Summer Academy Celebrates Success – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Summer Academy Celebrates Success

A closing ceremony on July 5 capped off the 2013 HWS Summer Academy’s ninth consecutive year and gave participants the chance to share their experiences with friends and family. The Summer Academy welcomed some of Geneva High School’s brightest students to campus for a two-week intensive learning program.

“We all came to the conclusion that this was one of the most successful years of the program,” says Megan Soule ’14, who is volunteering for the program and helped put the new and improved curriculum into effect. “We added a lot of new and exciting elements to this year and we have even bigger plans for next year.”

The program immerses students of color in elements of life at the Colleges, including college-level courses on a variety of subjects taught by members of the HWS faculty. Students studied topics including dance, art and art history, fables and many more. In a course taught by Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science John Vaughn, students took part in the process of creating robots while exploring the science behind robotics.

This year, a new job-shadowing element was introduced to the Summer Academy that provided students an opportunity to work side-by-side with professionals. In addition to six offices within the Colleges, the following Geneva community organizations and individuals participated in this experience:

  • Ted Baker, program director at Finger Lakes News Radio
  • Richard Austin, general manager at Michael Barnard Chevrolet
  • Neil Sjoblom ’75, professional photographer
  • Michael Rusinko, manager at Five-Star Bank
  • Marc Fuchs, associate professor, Department of Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology, Cornell’s New York State Agricultural Experiment Station
  • Heather Swanson, communications director for Geneva City School District

“It was really great,” says Soule. “The shadowing aspect allowed the students to take what they have learned in the classroom and get a glimpse of how it relates to the professional workplace. It was evident that the students enjoyed it and the professionals were enthusiastic in their support of the students.”

The Summer Academy also featured a portion dedicated to educating the students on the intensive admissions and college application process. Members of the HWS community offered various workshops encompassing topics such resume building, interview skills and college-level writing.

Since its founding, each of the program’s 50 graduates have gained college acceptance.

Watch the HWS Summer Academy video online.

Related Links