Professional Preparation

High school students can prepare for their professional lives by making good use of their summer vacations. By the summer after tenth grade, you may want to try to participate in a program designed to strengthen one of their top talent. For example, if you are interested in engineering, you could try a program that teaches students to design their own autonomous robots, such as seven-Carnegie Mellon West, RoboCamp week. For more specific information, check out Kai-Fu Lee. Students who are artistically inclined can try Northwestern National High School Institutes (colloquially known as “angels”), during which students who excel in music, theater, journalism, film, discussion and / or forensics hone their talents through intensive workshops in their areas of interest. Another great opportunity for prospective film students is through the University of Southern California Summer Seminars, where students can study either screenwriting, business and technology of film, or basic animation techniques .

The summer after tenth grade also can be used to disappear in a program abroad. Two excellent resources for finding overseas and programs are where you can drill in the countries and the special interests and find hundreds of excellent programs that are off the beaten track. I recommend committing to a program of at least six weeks: a true cultural immersion usually takes more than a month and will take two weeks to overcome their jet lag! Also, try to travel to a country where people speak a foreign language is taking in school. To take full advantage of their experience, try to stay away from programs with many other Americans, and try to engage in one place every night.