Information for starting and completing your application

Although we are not accepting applications for Summer Immersion: Hong Kong in 2019, please consider our Summer Immersion Programs in New York City and Barcelona.

We do not accept applications submitted on the applicant's behalf by parents, guardians, or third parties; the application should be submitted directly by the student. Communications from our Office of Enrollment Management will be sent primarily to the applicant.

Past participants in the Summer Programs for High School Students should submit all of the application materials but are not required to pay the application fee.

Admission Requirements

The admissions committee looks for highly motivated students entering grades 11 or 12 or freshman year of college who are interested in studying in Hong Kong because they want to learn about the economics, politics, and culture of the area.

Class size is limited to ensure participation in discussions and field trips; students are encouraged to apply early.

International students who are proficient in English are welcome to apply. While applicants are not required to submit TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or IELTS (International English Language Testing System) scores, students' English proficiency should be equivalent to 90 or above on the Internet-Based TOEFL or at least 6.5 on the IELTS.

Students should be aware that participation in this program does not constitute the basis for securing a student visa.

Application Materials

Applications and supporting materials (application fees, the personal essay, unofficial transcripts, letters of recommendation, and writing samples) can be submitted through the online application. Official transcripts must be submitted in sealed envelopes.

All materials submitted by mail should clearly bear the program name, applicant's name, applicant's date of birth and, if available, Columbia University ID number.

Applications are not considered complete until all required materials have been received. Only complete applications are reviewed.

  • Completed Online Application form.

  • Nonrefundable application fee. Applicants must include credit card information through the online application.

  • Transcript of applicant's secondary school academic record. We require grades for all secondary school work completed, including current coursework. We strongly recommend submitting unofficial documents through the online application system at the time of application as this will expedite the admissions process. Candidates offered admission will later be required to supply official documents prior to enrollment.

    If you are unable to obtain an unofficial copy of your transcript, please request to have an official copy sent from your school to our office at the address listed at the bottom of this page.

    If the transcript does not include the most recently completed term, the applicant or school should also submit a copy of the most recent report card.

    Transcripts must be in English or come with an official translation. International students not graded according to the U.S. grading system should provide a grading key with the transcript.

  • Personal Essay submitted through the online application.

    Personal Essay instructions

    Participants in the Summer Programs for High School Students come from approximately 75 different countries and 45 U.S. states. Imagine one of the new friends you will make and tell us about him or her in an essay of no more than 600 words. You might want to address some of the following:

    • Where is she/he from?
    • What is her/his life back home like?
    • What class is she/he taking?
    • What do the two of you have in common?
    • What do you learn from her/him?
    • What does she/he learn from you?
  • Behavioral Standards Consent Form. Behavioral standards are strictly enforced. Failure to abide by the Behavioral Standards Consent Form will result in dismissal from the program.

  • Two letters of recommendation. Recommendations must be submitted through the online application. During the application process you will add your recommender's information (name, title and email). Once you add and save their information an email is sent to your recommender with a link to our recommendation form. Applicants may submit their online applications in advance of the recommendations

    Letter #1

    Applicants must submit a letter written by a guidance counselor, principal, or headmaster commenting on the student's intellectual ability, level of maturity, and motivation for participating in the program.


    Letter #2

    Applicants must submit a letter written by an instructor who knows the student's level of maturity and ability to study both independently and in a group setting. The recommendation must come from a teacher who works at the school the applicant is currently attending.

Send all supporting materials not submitted online to:

Mailing Address

Summer Immersion: Hong Kong
Office of Enrollment Management
School of Professional Studies
203 Lewisohn Hall
2970 Broadway, Mail Code 4119
New York, NY 10027-6902

Contact Information

Office hours
9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.