Why attend?

At the University of Rochester, students pursue only what they’re interested in. With Rochester’s Pre-College Programs, high school students get that same freedom. For over twenty-five years, these programs have welcomed students from around the globe. This means students make significant contributions to campus, foster respect for other cultures, and bring unique perspectives to the classroom. If you’re an international student, never fear—Pre-College Counselors will help you adjust to a new culture, environment, and educational system.

University faculty, graduate students, and esteemed local educators teach classes and are committed to cultivating the minds of young students. With small class sizes, instructors mentor each student and give valuable insights into the theories, technologies, and principles of their field.

Explore the University, broaden your educational experience, sharpen academic skills, and learn more about who—not just what—you want to be.

Students who participate in Pre-College Programs…

  • Get a true sense of college life.
  • Gain new perspectives on academic abilities and potential.
  • Explore career possibilities.
  • Increase appreciation of cultural diversity.
  • Build lasting relationships with peers.
  • Learn in a rigorous and enjoyable environment.

Intensive Studies

Intensive Studies

With these featured programs, rising 11th and 12th-grade students get a deeper look into non-credit college-level material and focus on a specific area of interest for three full weeks. All of the Intensive Studies programs require students to live on campus with the exception of The Art of a Short Film program. 

RR | 11–12 | 3-wk (The Art of a Short Film: RO | 11–12 | 3-wk)

Explorations in Pathology

What is pathology? In partnership with the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, this program offers a unique experience exploring the multifaceted discipline of pathology, a cornerstone of modern medicine. Students will get firsthand experience with laboratory processes, organ dissection sessions, independent coursework, and mentoring by a department physician.

Mini Medical School

Interested in a career in medicine? This unique and selective program offers research labs, rotations, and service learning. Students will get firsthand experience with the clinical, community service, and public health aspects of medicine, gaining a real taste of the medical school experience.

Hajim Engineering

Students can develop their independence, eye for invention, and advanced research and problem-solving skills in the Hajim Engineering program. This hands-on engineering program allows students to investigate topics like biomedical engineering, data science, and audio and music, using the vast resources of the Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

Learn more by viewing the videos: Audio and Music Engineering and Biomedical Engineering

Business Bootcamp

In this program, students can explore creative ideas, entrepreneurship, and collaboration. This intensive program with the Simon Business School will have students work in teams to create their own business plan while visiting some of the top local businesses for inspiration. Courses in marketing, career prep, and teamwork allow students to explore the world of business, from practicing their pitch to developing a business strategy.

Learn more by viewing the video: Business Bootcamp


View the Intensive Studies course listings and descriptions.

Non-Credit Courses

Non-Credit Courses

With Rochester Scholars, students will use Rochester’s flexible curriculum as a model by selecting classes they’re most passionate about. The non-credit course offerings reflect Rochester’s areas of study and are structured like college seminars. Students can choose up to two courses per session, from fields like the arts, engineering, English, history, mathematics, medicine, modern languages, music, and science. Partners include the Eastman School of Music, the Medical Center, the School of Nursing, the Warner School of Education, and the Hajim School of Engineering. Students will participate in class discussions, field trips, group projects, experiments, and labs, putting new found knowledge to use in creative ways.

Students looking for a residential experience will take two classes: one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Commuter students may choose whether they would like to take a morning class, afternoon class, or both.

RO | 9–12 | 1-wk | 2-wk | 3-wk

Rochester Scholars Course Descriptions

Learn more by viewing the video: Rochester Scholars

Sample non-credit courses:

  • Biomedical Technology: Engineer, Doctor, or Both?
  • Careers in Engineering
  • Computer Networking
  • GirlsGetMath@Rochester
  • Introduction to Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Introduction to Optics and Lasers
  • Introduction to Pharmacology
  • May It Please The Court: A Mock Trial
  • Medical Mysteries
  • Nursing: A Career that Never Gets Boring!

  • Rochester CSI
  • Stem Cell Biology: The New Frontier
  • Strangeness in Quantum Physics
  • Summer Connection at Eastman School of Music
  • The Art of Animation
  • The Basics of Investments and Careers in Finance
  • The Language of Cinema: How Moviemakers Tell Stories
  • What’s Up Doc? Exploring the Pre-Med Experience
  • Web Developer Bootcamp

View Rochester Scholars course listings and descriptions.

Credit Courses

Credit Courses

With Taste of College, students get a jump-start on their college career. This program allows students to earn college credit and study among Rochester undergraduates. The classes motivate students to explore subjects typically reserved for study on a collegiate level. Courses are offered during the University’s fall, spring, and summer academic semesters, and credits are transferable to most colleges and universities. Learn more by viewing the video: Taste of College

RO | 11–12 | UR

Taste of College Course Descriptions

Sample credit courses:

  • Abnormal Psychology
  • Adolescent Development
  • Beginning American Sign Language
  • Chemistry Concepts, Systems, and Practice
  • Global Modern Architecture
  • Hamilton’s Atlantic World
  • Intensive Elementary Chinese
  • Introduction to Comparative Politics

  • Introduction to International Relations
  • Linear Algebra with Differential Equations*
  • Marco Polo and Medeival Times
  • Moral Problems
  • Prep for College Chemistry
  • Psychology of Gender
  • The Contemporary Novel
  • The Other Histories of Photography

*Ideal fit for students who have exhausted high school-level math classes.

Semester Schedule

Session Dates
Summer Session A1 May 21–June 15, 2018 (4 weeks)
Summer Session A2 May 21–June 29, 2018 (6 weeks)
Summer Session B1 July 2–July 27, 2018* (4 weeks)
Summer Session B2 July 2–August 10, 2018* (6 weeks)

*Residential housing is available for the B1 and B2 summer sessions only.

View Taste of College course listings and descriptions.

Community Programs

Community Programs

These commuter-only programs are available to students living in Monroe County.

MTH 165 – Linear Algebra with Differential Equations

Math 165 is a credit-bearing course available to high school students who have exhausted all of their high school math classes. Student living in Monroe Country are eligible to take this class at a 50% discount. The course is offered during the spring, summer, and fall semesters. Students must apply to take Math 165 through the Taste of College program.

CO | 11–12 | UR

Taste of College Application Process
  • Submit the completed TOC application at least 30 days before the start of class.
  • Schedule an interview with the Pre-College Programs office. (Pre-College Programs Skype: UR_precollege)
  • Allow up to 14 days for the application to be reviewed. Decisions will be sent via mail or email.
  • Admitted students will submit payment in the form of a credit card, check, or tuition waiver.
  • Attend orientation.

MTH 165 Course Description

Matrix algebra and inverses, Gaussian elimination, determinants, vector spaces, eigenvalue problems. First order differential equations, linear second order differential equations with constant coefficients, undetermined coefficients, linear systems of differential equations. Applications to physical, engineering, and life sciences.

*Prerequisites: Students who have exhausted all high school math classes are eligible to take this course.

View Taste of College course listing and description.

International Students

For International Students

The University welcomes international students to apply to the Pre-College Programs. International students make significant contributions to campus learning by fostering awareness of and respect for other cultures and by bringing unique perspectives into the classroom. Our Pre-College Counselors are prepared to help them adjust to a new culture, environment, and educational system. 

Application Deadlines: For Taste of College (credit courses), international applicants must submit their completed application and show proof of TOEFL scores by April 1, 2018 in order to allow for enought time for accepted students to apply for an F-1 visa. All other international applicants must adhere to posted deadlines and if accepted to the program, apply for a B-2 visitor/tourist visa. If you do not currently attend an English-speaking high school, a Skype interview will be required.

Pre-College Programs Skype: UR_precollege

Programs for International Students

International students may apply to any of our Pre-College Programs, including the Intensive Studies, Non-Credit Courses, and Credit Courses.

Application Requirements

International students are encouraged to apply early. Your application will be reviewed and considered once all the required admission materials are received.

To be considered for admission, international students must complete and submit the following:

  • Online application
  • $50 nonrefundable application fee (will be applied to final tuition)
  • 2 short essays
  • Official high school transcript (provided by your school counselor)
  • 1 letter of recommendation from a school official
  • Permissions form (part of the application)
  • Financial assistance form (If applicable; part of the application)
  • Photo of your current passport that shows your name and picture
  • Admissions interview via Skype (If applicable)

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores are only required for international students applying for the Taste of College (credit) program or the Intensive Studies programs. For international students who do not currently attend an English-speaking high school, we will determine a student’s English proficiency during a required Skype interview.

Students who are dual citizens (and will enter the US on their US passport) or are US permanent residents (Green Card holders) do not need to apply for a visa. All international students admitted to the Pre-College Program and traveling to the United States must ensure they have a valid passport (valid for at least six months from date of entry) for travel to and from the program and for the duration of the program.

Health insurance 
International and non-US citizens participating in the Pre-College Program are required to have health insurance. Short-term health insurance may be available through Seven Corners, Inbound Guest: www.sevencorners.com.


RR: Residential required

RO: Residential optional

UR: Semester options

1-wk/2-wk/3-wk: Week length options

912: For rising 9th through 12th-grade students

1112: For rising 11th through 12th-grade students