Pre-Collegiate Summer Scholars Program

The Pre-Collegiate Summer Scholars Program offers approximately 190 selected students the opportunity to spend seven weeks experiencing Cornell University’s rich academic life. Students live in a small and diverse residential community where they meet faculty, staff, and other students. They learn about the campus and the variety of resources that support academic achievement and are introduced to the wide range of extracurricular activities available at Cornell. The program is coordinated by the Learning Strategies Center in conjunction with the Office of Academic Diversity Initiatives, the New York State Opportunities Programs, the Office of Financial Aid and Student Employment, and the University’s undergraduate colleges.

Welcome to our future class of 2028 & 2029!

students walking in front of PSB in the summer
Pre-Collegiate Summer Scholars Program students catch up after class near the Physical Science Building.

We are very excited to welcome you to Cornell! The Pre-Collegiate Summer Scholars Program (PSSP) is designed to help first-year students from across Cornell’s colleges and schools prepare for the challenges of their first year as college students, and the best place to begin this preparation is on our beautiful campus. Please see below for additional information.

When is PSSP 2024?

The Pre-Collegiate Summer Scholars Program 2024 will begin Wednesday, June 19 and end Wednesday, August 7. These dates coincide with the regular six-week summer session at Cornell. Special arrangements are possible for students whose high school graduation date is after June 19.

How are students selected?

Each of the colleges at Cornell selects students based on their high school experiences, intended courses of study, and personal backgrounds. Participation in the program is limited to those students selected by the admissions committees. In addition, students admitted into the Higher Education Opportunity Program or Educational Opportunity Program are required to attend.

What do students in the program do?

Students participating in the program are enrolled into summer session courses (such as English, math, biology, quantitative skills preparation, college achievement seminar, computer science, economics, psychology, or architecture) to enhance first-semester performance. Students take two or three courses, and all summer courses will be part of the student’s permanent record at Cornell. Specific courses for each student will be determined in advance by the student’s college advisor. During the program students meet with their college advisors to discuss progress and to plan future course schedules. In addition, students are involved in workshops, field trips, guest lectures, and a variety of social and cultural activities.

What are the costs?

Pre-Collegiate Summer Scholars Program costs, including tuition, lodging, meals, and required academic supplies, are covered for all participants.

How will the program help me?

Over 6,500 students have participated in the Pre-Collegiate Summer Scholars Program (formerly the Prefreshman Summer Program) since its inception. Previous participants have reported overwhelmingly that their participation in the program was extremely valuable in helping them become familiar with the Cornell campus, the Ithaca community, and the various resources available to them as students. Additionally, friendships begun during the summer have proven to be enduring ones, often providing the social support network useful for long term success at Cornell. Students have also reported that this summer academic experience has made the difference between merely surviving academically at Cornell and achieving academic excellence.

Additional information for PSSP 2024 scholars

We are excited to have you join our Cornell community! Below are links to some additional information for students who will be joining us this summer.

Contact us

For further information please call the Learning Strategies Center at (607) 255-6310 or email us at