During Hollinsummer, middle school and high school girls learn about digital video production in the morning and then can take a trek around the world’s cuisines in the afternoon. Or spend the morning dancing and the afternoon throwing pots. Or combine the exploration of forensic chemistry with the art of photography.

Hollinsummer students—some 100 middle and high school girls from around the country—choose two classes to create their ideal morning and afternoon schedule. The two-week program is fleshed out with sports clinics, trips to local attractions, and on-campus activities at Hollins University.

The program was launched in 1983 with a simple but important premise: Why not give high school students a taste of campus life both academically and socially before they enroll in college so they know what to expect? Today, the core attributes of the program remain the same and Hollinsummer further expanded its educational programming. Theatre arts, computer science, painting, video/filmmaking, psychology, mathematics, media and politics, and French were all offered, and the response was enthusiastic.

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