Activities & Events

Outside of class, students can choose to participate in a variety of extracurricular and co-curricular activities, including college preparedness programming, a community outreach activity, and a special lecture from a visiting scholar.

College Preparedness Programming

During the midday break and after class, students are invited to attend college success events in the form of seminars, workshops, tours, and lectures to prepare for the academic rigors of university life.

Columbia Undergraduate Admissions Presentation

Presented by Columbia University's Undergraduate Admissions Office, students hear first-hand how to prepare for and what to expect from the undergraduate admissions experience.

Writing the College Application Essay

Presented by Columbia University's Writing Center, students learn strategies for writing strong and effective essays. Seminars include:

  • Writing the Personal Essay
  • Writing the Supplemental Essay

Campus Tour

Tour Columbia's beautiful campus with an Admissions Office tour guide and learn about being a student in the vibrant city of New York.

Special Lecture

The Neuroscience of Learning

How do humans and animals learn, and how do we study this in the laboratory? What is the neurobiological basis of memory formation? How can we apply this knowledge to our own studies? This lecture gives a brief overview of modern neuroscience and psychology research on learning and memory and illustrates how cognitive science can be used to develop strategies for effective learning.

Presented by Anamaria Alexandrescu

Anamaria Alexandrescu received her B.S. in neuroscience summa cum laude from Florida Atlantic University. In her undergraduate career she was involved in research on the molecular mechanisms of strokes, as well as on the neurobiology of schizophrenia at the University of Pennsylvania. She holds an M.S. from New York University and is currently completing her Ph.D. in neuroscience and physiology at New York University School of Medicine. In her doctoral research Anamaria studies the neurobiology of learning and memory; in particular, she focuses on the molecular mechanisms that contribute to the synaptic plasticity underlying long-term memory formation. She has taught several undergraduate neuroscience courses at New York University and has extensive experience in teaching and mentoring middle school and high school students.

Community Outreach & Awareness

Students are invited to participate in a program-led community outreach event. They will have the opportunity to make a difference in the local Morningside Heights community by volunteering their time after class at a local establishment. Past outreach activities have included:

  • Volunteering in local soup kitchens
  • Teaching computer skills to the elderly
  • Visiting local sustainability and urban gardening projects

Student Life Events

After class, participants can choose to attend seminars on college life, led by Columbia University and Barnard students. Sample topics are as follows:

  • Wellness & Self-Care in the College Setting
  • Roommates, Clubs, and Classes: What to Expect from Campus Life
  • Choosing the Right College

Program Celebrations

First Day Event

To kick-off the first day of classes, program participants are invited to an on-campus luncheon to get to know their fellow students and learn about upcoming events over the next five weeks.

Last Day Event

Students are invited to join together for an end of program celebration.