Pre-College Programs

Residential Institutes


photo of students in a classroom


Institutes are one week residential programs offered for students entering grades 10-12.

Institutes are offered in:

  • Advanced Web Design
  • Engineering
  • Food Science: STEM
  • Forensic Science
  • International English Institute
  • Law and Government
  • Performance Theatre
  • Take Action: Leadership

Deadline for applications is two (2) weeks prior to institute start date.

General Information

Pre-College Programs is proud to offer an incredible summer of unique educational enrichment programs for academically motivated students entering grades 6–12. Established in 1988, the Office of Pre-College Programs has served thousands of students through hands on, experiential academic enrichment programs held on the main campus of Wright State University.

Wright State University is an accredited state university located 12 miles northeast of Dayton, Ohio. Named after the world-famous Wright brothers, Wright State University continues their spirit of innovation. The university serves over 17,000 students, offering more than 100 undergraduate and 75 Ph.D., graduate, and professional degrees. The beautiful 557 acre wooded campus offers modern educational and recreational facilities.

Program participants will spend six hours per day in class or workshop sessions. Course offerings and activities are designed to guide and encourage the educational, personal, and social growth of each participant.

Evening activities allow participants to enjoy recreational activities and socialize with new friends. All participants are housed in The Woods residence complex. The residence hall rooms accommodate two or three individuals with an attached semi-private bathroom. Each room has an air-conditioner, microwave, and refrigerator. Meals are served in the university dining hall. A variety of entrees, side items, and beverages are available at each meal.

A well-trained team of residential assistants are on call 24 hours a day to provide orientation, guidance, and support to the Pre-College participants. All activities are fully supervised day and night to monitor the well-being of each participant.

Residential program fees cover tuition, daily curriculum materials and activities, evening activities, on-campus housing, and meals.

Please read the provided information carefully. If you have any questions or concerns, contact the office, and a member of the administrative staff will be glad to assist you.


  • Early registration is encouraged to secure your course selection(s). Each course has a limited enrollment.
  • Registrations are processed on a "first come, first served" basis.
  • Applicants will be notified of the status of their application within three weeks of receipt of a completed application.
  • Only completed applications will be processed.
  • To apply, submit the following online:
    • a completed participant application.
    • a participant nomination form, which is to be completed by a teacher, counselor, or school administrator of the participant’s choice.
  • All applications must be submitted with an application fee. This fee is 25% of the cost of the course and is nonrefundable once a student is accepted. The application fee will be credited toward the total cost of the course. The remaining balance is due 3 weeks prior to the course.
  • Each course has a minimum enrollment requirement. Courses not reaching the minimum enrollment requirement may be canceled.
  • Course listings are contingent upon the availability of campus facilities.

Refund Policy

  • Refunds will be issued only if:
    • a participant cannot be placed in a course selection.
    • a participant withdraws, in writing, before May 15. (Application fees are non-refundable)
    • a participant withdraws due to a serious illness. Written doctor's notification is required. (Application fees are non-refundable)
    • a course is canceled due to insufficient enrollment.
  • All requests for refunds must be submitted in writing before August 15.
  • Participants who cannot attend due to a change in family scheduling will not receive a refund.
  • No shows are considered cancelations without notice, and are nonrefundable.
  • A $30 processing fee, per course, will be deducted from all refund requests after May 15.
  • Refunds for participants withdrawing after May 15 will be reviewed and processed between September 15 and October 31.
  • Refunds will not be issued for participants who voluntarily leave the program early or are dismissed for disciplinary reasons.
  • Refunds will not be issued if a student's visitor visa is denied.


  • Residential fees cover tuition, curriculum materials and activities, on-campus housing, and meals.
  • The nonrefundable application fee is applied to the total camp fee.
  • The final balance payment, which varies by course, is due three weeks prior to course start date unless otherwise noted on your billing information.
  • All payments received after the payment deadline must include a $25 late fee.
  • Pre-College Programs reserves the right to cancel any registrations if payments are not made by the due date.
  • Fees are subject to change.

Living on Campus

The daily schedule for participants includes seminars/workshops, meals, and social/recreational events. While most of the day is devoted to activities focused on the program topic, social and recreational activities are also built into the curriculum. A typical daily schedule includes (times are approximate):

  • 8:15-8:45 a.m. | Breakfast
  • 9:00-12:00 p.m. | Seminars and workshops
  • 12:00-1:00 p.m. | Lunch
  • 1:00-4:00 p.m. | Seminars and workshops
  • 5:00-6:00 p.m. | Dinner
  • 6:30-8:00 p.m. | Learning Community Activities
  • 8:00-10:00 p.m. | Social/Recreation Activities
  • 11:00 p.m. | Lights out

All Pre-College residential participants will live in the Woods Housing Complex. Room assignments are made randomly, unless a specific roommate is requested. The rooms are designed to house two or three participants. Each residence hall room features bunk beds, student desks, wardrobes, a microwave oven, small refrigerator, and a sink. Each room has a semi-private attached bathroom.

Each floor has a lounge with cable television. Laundry facilities are available in each building. Telephone service is not provided in individual rooms, unless a medical condition warrants immediate phone access at all times.

A recreation area adjacent to the residence hall features sand volleyball, full-court basketball, and picnic areas. Participants will also be able to utilize the recreational facilities of the Student Union. Each program offers a variety of recreational options daily.

The weather in Ohio during the summer months is usually warm and humid. All residence hall rooms and academic buildings are air-conditioned. As you pack, remember to include casual comfortable clothes, at least two pairs of comfortable shoes, a swimsuit, personal toiletries, an alarm clock, umbrella, and bedding. All participants must bring bedding and linens (unless you are a part of the International English Institute). All beds are twin extra-long.

Participants in any of the science programs should bring a long-sleeve shirt, long pants, and closed toe shoes for lab work. Be advised that some activities and field trips may result in wet and/or stained clothes.

Residence hall rooms should be locked at all times. Participants are responsible for their own belongings, money, and room key. In addition, participants are responsible for any damages that occur to the residence hall room and other university property. Pre-College Programs will seek restitution for damages. A fee of $40 will be assessed for lost room keys.

Since participants are very busy, it is often difficult to contact them while they are on campus. Telephone messages can be left with the Pre-College Office at (937) 775-3135 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Messages will be delivered to participants at meals unless immediate contact is necessary. After-hours, emergency contact information will be provided at check-in.

Please mail letters and packages early. Mail that is received after a participant has left campus will be returned. Mail should be sent using the following format:

Name of Participant
Name of Program
Pre-College Programs
Wright State University
3640 Colonel Glenn Hwy.
Dayton, OH 45435-0001

Packing Checklist

  • Clothing: 
    • T-shirts and sweatshirts
    • Two pairs of shoes
    • Jeans or long pants
    • Shorts
    • Sweater or light jacket
    • Umbrella or raincoat
    • Underclothing
    • Swimsuit
  • Linens/Bedding:
    • Linens-Twin extra long two single bed sheets
    • Pillow and pillow case
    • Blankets and/or sleeping bag
    • Washcloth and Towel
  • Toiletries:
    • Toothbrush/toothpaste
    • Shaving supplies
    • Comb/brush
    • Soap and shampoo
    • Sanitary products
    • Deodorant
    • Tissues
    • Cosmetics
    • Prescriptions or medications
    • Sun block
    • Insect repellant 
  • Miscellaneous:
    • Watch and alarm clock
    • Portable radio or CD player
    • Sunglasses
    • Spending money
    • Snacks
    • Calculator (science/math programs)
    • Pens and pencils
    • Spiral notebook
    • Camera
    • Clothes hangers


In order to provide a quality pre-college experience for all, each participant is expected to adhere to the following rules of the program and of Wright State University:

Residential Participants

  1. Participants are expected to treat all other participants with respect and demonstrate an appreciation of diversity. Violent, abusive, or harassing behaviors are grounds for immediate dismissal.
  2. Participants will be prepared and on time for all scheduled activities.
  3. Absolutely no alcohol, smoking, or illegal drugs are permitted. Violation of this rule will result in immediate dismissal and possible criminal charges.
  4. Participants are not allowed to have automobiles on campus.
  5. Participants are prohibited from leaving the campus of Wright State University, except in the event of a curricular field trip or medical emergency.
  6. Participants are not permitted to have visitors during their stay.
  7. Members of the opposite sex are not permitted to occupy the same dorm room at any time of day.
  8. Participants are not to leave their rooms after "lights-out," except in the event of an emergency.
  9. Participants are responsible for the keys assigned to them. Participants will keep their rooms locked at all times and will carry their keys with them.
  10. Participants are responsible for their own personal belongings, clothes, and money.

Any infringement of these rules may result in participant's immediate dismissal from the program.

Additional program rules and university policies are discussed at participant orientation.  Residential orientation is held on Sunday evening, after the participants have checked-in to the dorm, completed campus tour, and finished dinner.

Required Form(s)

Additional form(s) will be completed at check-on.  Students who are not arriving to campus with his or her parents and or legal guardians should make arrangements ahead of arrival for completion of forms.  Authorization to Dispense Medication Form will be completed at check-in. Please note that the International English Institute has a separate medication form that is emailed to the participants.

Arrival Procedures

Check-in is from 3:30 p.m.-5:00 p.m. on Sunday. Due to staff schedules, we are not able to accommodate early arrivals, unless they are arranged at least two weeks in advance. (International English Institute please refer to your welcome packet for arrival and departure procedures as they are different.)

Once you arrive on campus, please follow these procedures:

  • Report to the Pre-College Dormitory with your parents/guardians and follow the signs posted on the doors to the lounge holding your camp’s registration. Do not bring luggage into the registration area. You will be given your room assignment and key at check-in.
  • If you bring any medications to camp, your parent/guardian must sign an authorization form when you check-in. All medications must be given to a staff member when you check-in.
  • A residential assistant will accompany you to your room to complete the check-in process.
  • After you have been officially checked-in, you may unpack. Your parents/guardians may leave after you are officially checked in. It is important to arrange a meeting location for check-out before parents/guardians leave campus.
  • Report to the designated lounge for your program at the posted time for orientation.

Departure Procedures

Check-out is immediately following the conclusion of scheduled activities on Friday at approximately 4 p.m. Parents/guardians who are not able to pick-up their child by 5:00 p.m. must notify the office and make arrangements for an Extended Stay.

Theatre participants will check-out at approximately 5:00 p.m. following their production. Parents/guardians who are not able to pick their child up by 5:00 p.m., must notify the office and make arrangements for an Extended Stay in advance. (International English Institute please refer to your welcome packet for arrival and departure procedures as they are different.)

Please follow these procedures:

  • Check your residence hall for forgotten personal items. Remove any leftover food or trash from the room and take it to the dumpster. Have a residential assistant check your room for damages.
  • When your parents/guardians arrive on campus, bring them to the lounge assigned to your program.
  • Once your parents/guardians have arrived, they must sign the Release of Participant form in the presence of a staff member. After the release has been signed and your personal belongings have been removed from the room, you are free to leave.
  • Have a safe trip home!


Well-trained, dedicated, and caring best describe the Pre-College staff. The administrative staff is responsible for all program logistics and supervision of residential staff.

The residential staff, that lives on-campus with the participants, is composed of a coordinator, assistant coordinator, and residential assistants (RAs). Members of the residential staff are graduate and undergraduate students who have experience working with young people. The main function of the residential staff is to provide orientation, guidance, and support to program participants.

Members of the residential staff are available 24 hours a day to assist participants in having a positive pre-college experience. Each RA will provide leadership to a small group of participants. RA groups will meet several times a day to review the daily schedule, address any interpersonal challenges, and assess the physical and emotional well-being of each participant.

Residential staff responsibilities include:

  • Supervising participants
  • Assisting with course projects
  • Being a positive role model
  • Providing leadership in emergency situations
  • Getting to know each participant
  • Creating a positive environment
  • Dealing with discipline issues
  • Completing CPR/First Aid/AED training and pass required background check

Parents will have the opportunity to meet the members of the residential and administrative staff during check-in. If you have any special concerns or questions, please speak with the residential assistant who assists you during check-in.


2017 Summer Enrichment Institutes (Grades 10 – 12)


The week will be filled with hands-on experiences in engineering disciplines, which will include mechanical, electrical, bio-medical and computer science. Each day new concepts and activities will be introduced to understand how and why things work. There will also be local industry tours where participants will see engineering at work.

Course Dates: July 9-14, 2017                                  Fee: $675

Food Science: STEM                                                

Are you curious? Do you enjoy science? Blend it with your love for food by becoming a Food Scientist for a week! This fun and educational summer class will teach you practical techniques to design and evaluate high quality foods. Join us on experiential field trips to meet other foods scientists and prepare for an awesome career in food technology. 

Course Dates: July 9-14, 2017                                  Fee: $675

Law and Government

Guilty or innocent? This class will examine the American Legal system. Explore the constitution, the Supreme Court, laws, legal and trial procedures. Students will investigate political and legal issues that may affect their lives as well as the lives of others. Students will study and research historical trials and how they have impacted our lives today. Have a better understanding of our government and what makes it different from other countries.

Course Dates: July 9-14, 2017                                  Fee: $675

Performance Theatre

Welcome to the typical day of a working theatre company. Students will attend professional workshops provided by Wright State faculty on voice, stage movement, monologue preparation, improvisation, character development, and acting styles. This challenging course ends in a culminating activity where students perform their own production for friends and family.

Course Dates: July 16-21, 2017                                Fee: $675

Take Action - Leadership

Use your high school years to set a course for the rest of your life! Skills you develop right now will set a firm foundation for developing a strong character, leading to future success in your academic and career endeavors. Students will develop new skills in conflict management, effective listening, and goal setting. Students will learn their strengths and in what areas they need to grow.

Course Dates: July 16-21, 2017                               Fee: $675

International English Institute (Tiếng Việt, Español, 한국어, 中文, and عربى translations)

(Pre-College Intensive English Program at Wright State University)

Join other international and English as a second language students for this intensive academic English program.  This course provides in-depth instruction on university level English and American classroom culture. The course focuses on academic writing, research, and vocabulary, and helps students understand class lectures and course readings. Students have daily opportunities to work with campus resources and technology, and interact with university staff, faculty, and students. This program is intended for intermediate users of English. This course will  include two weekend stays with excursions planned. 

Students will travel to Dayton, Ohio, where they will participate in this two week English and cultural program.  The fees for the program include all meals from Saturday dinner, July 15, through breakfast, Saturday, July 29.  It also includes airport transportation to and from Dayton International Airport on Saturday, July 15 (arrival) and Saturday, July 29 (departure). Weekend excursions may include: shopping, amusement park, local festivals, museums, and more. Students who are a part of Wright State's International Institutional partnership are eligible for a $200 discount.

Course Dates: July 15-29, 2017                               Fee: $2,200

Forensic Science                              BACK  BY POPULAR DEMAND!

Explore the fundamental processes of forensic investigation and crime scene analysis, just as crime scene investigators do. Using biology, chemistry, and geology, students will test the strengths and weaknesses of regularly used forensic techniques – response and evidence collection guidelines, fingerprinting, and DNA profiling, as they complete hands-on crime scene analysis. Students will also see how these forensic techniques are applied to numerous high-profile real world cases.

Course Dates:  July 23-28, 2017                            Fee: $675


Advanced Web Design

Want to learn how to build a website from the ground up, the same way the professionals do? This course will cover user experience and user interface theory as well as give student hands-on training with Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) and basic to intermediate JavaScript. Students should already have a familiarity with HTML prior to this course. 

Course Dates: July 23-28, 2017                             Fee: $675