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About Summer Academy

Summer academy student working on his final project

Contact Us

If you have any questions or to learn more, contact us at summer@the-bac.edu

Summer Academy has been part of the Boston Architectural College (BAC) curriculum since 1973. Our design exploration program is open to all high school students entering grades 10 and above. High school students attending Summer Academy during the month of July work in small studio teams building design skills in freehand sketching, perspective drawing and collage, model-making, mapping, and diagramming as they explore creative solutions to architectural problems at the scale of the body, the building, and the city.

Studio leaders and faculty are emerging design professionals and advanced graduate students from Boston-area design schools including Boston Architectural College, Harvard Graduate School of Design, MIT, Northeastern University, Rhode Island School of Design, and Wentworth Institute of Technology. We all love to make things and to observe and question the quirky and inspiring details that make Boston such a wonderful city. We encourage students to talk to each other, think, draw, experiment, and assemble a wide range of materials to create new and compelling visions for the future of our built environment.

Everyone is challenged to think critically and communicate their creative design ideas to others. By making physical models, ideas are tested and teamwork is encouraged. During the course of the month, Summer Academy students expand their understanding of the impact of design around them and learn about the ways design can change communities and improve lives. As a student in the program, you will leave Summer Academy with new skills in design thinking that are applicable to many problems and types of work you may encounter whether you choose to concentrate in a design field or another area of study.

2016 Summer Academy Program Information

Dates: Four-week program, July 2016 (Exact dates TBD)

Program Hours: 9 am–1 pm, Monday–Friday, with an extended-day option on Wednesdays until 4 pm.
(The BAC will be closed Monday, July 4.)

Students planning to stay for the optional Wednesday extended day will have a one hour lunch break and are welcome to bring lunch or buy lunch at one of the many Newbury and Boylston Street restaurants. Wednesday extended day projects include photography, digital modeling, and free-hand drawing workshops as well onsite installation projects and field trips. 

Admission and Registration: Current high-school students entering grades 10 and above are welcome to apply to Summer Academy (current 9th graders through current seniors). Summer Academy students are accepted through a rolling admission process; enrollment is first-come, first-served. To apply, you must submit the BAC Summer Academy Application Form (forms coming soon) and a letter of recommendation on school letterhead from a teacher or guidance counselor at your high school. For more information, please call 617.585.0101 or email summer@the-bac.edu.

Tuition: TBD. All materials and supplies included. 

Scholarship Opportunities: A limited number of full and partial scholarships are available based on financial need as well as through the Robert Houseman Fund, a gift to the BAC, established to promote diversity in the design professions. Students who qualify are encouraged to apply. Scholarship applicants must respond to the essay question on the application, include a letter of recommendation from a teacher or guidance counselor, and complete both the Application Form and a Scholarship Application (forms coming soon). Students applying for scholarships do not need to submit tuition payment with their registration. Once scholarships are awarded in late March, the tuition balance, if you receive a partial scholarship, will be due.

International Students and Residency for Students: BAC Summer Academy does not offer residency or meal plan options. Families of international students and other students from beyond the greater Boston area are responsible for student living arrangements. Please contact us via email at summer@the-bac.edu or by phone at +1.617.585.0101 with questions. International students should submit an International Application Form (form coming soon).

Information Sessions: The BAC hosts Summer Academy Information Sessions in November, February, March, and later in the spring. Students and their families are invited to join us at our upcoming Summer Academy Information Sessions to learn more about Summer Academy and also to take part in design workshops and informal discussions about paths to design school and pre-college planning. Dates for 2016 information sessions are TBD.

Local Transportation: Field trip transportation via the T during program hours is provided, but transportation to and from the BAC is the responsibility of the student. Student-rate T passes are available to students enrolled in Summer Academy. The BAC is easily accessible to the T subway, commuter rail, and bus lines. We are located in Boston's Back Bay on the corner of Hereford and Newbury, near the Hynes, Prudential, and Back Bay T stations. Public transportation information can be found by visiting the MBTA website.

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