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Pre-College at SUNY Geneseo

Want to give your future a test-drive? SUNY Geneseo provides junior and senior high school students the opportunity to take college-level courses taught by distinguished faculty. Earn college credits by immersing yourself in a course that engages and prepares you for post-secondary education. Check out the current course offerings and FAQ below!

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With Geneseo’s rigorous curriculum available to you now, you too can participate in the college’s tradition of transformational learning.

Course Offerings


Summer Institute in Justice and Ethics in Modern America

It’s never too early to shape a more enlightened world view. Our brand new Summer Institute in Justice and Ethics in Modern America can help you do that. It’s a four-week, remote study program that examines the ethical and political challenges that currently face American society.

High school seniors and recent high school graduates will earn college credit while previewing the expectations of the modern college classroom. You’ll read college-level material, engage in respectful discussion, explore different interests, and learn about college life from outstanding Geneseo faculty members and current student mentors.

Apply online by April 30th to enroll

Application Timeline

  • Decision and scholarship notification for first-round applicants: April 15th
  • Commitment to the program due for first-round applicants: April 30th
  • Extended deadline for new applicants: April 30th
  • Commitment to the program due for second-round applicants: May 15th
  • Tuition due: May 24th

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible to participate?

The institute is designed for high school students who are either rising seniors (in the summer after their junior year, regardless of what college they plan to attend) or new high school graduates (in the summer after their senior year). 

Where and when is the program held?

For Summer 2021, the institute is fully remote, so students can participate from anywhere. The program runs July 12-August 5. Classes meet each week, Monday-Thursday, 3-5p.m. A closing research symposium will be held August 17-18.

How does the program help prepare me for college and future careers?

Students will gain research experience and hone their skills in critical thinking, reading, and oral communication. They will collaborate with multiple faculty members and fellow participants and benefit from the mentorship of current Geneseo undergraduates.

Will I receive college credit? 

Yes! Successful completion of the Summer Institute will yield three credits—the same as most courses at SUNY Geneseo. In addition, students who elect to go to Geneseo after successfully completing the program will receive a Scholarly Activity Grant to use for expenses such as books, research collaboration with faculty, presentations at academic conferences, and more.

What is the cost of the program and are scholarships or financial aid available?

The cost of the program is $989.70. Full and partial scholarship for the cost of the Summer Institute are available. Please see the application page link for instructions, and feel free to contact the instructors at either Carly Herold at heroldc@geneseo.edu or David Levy at levy@geneseo.edu for more information. In addition, students who successfully complete the program and matriculate at Geneseo will also receive a Scholarly Activity Grant to use for expenses such as books, research collaboration with faculty, presentations at academic conferences, and more. The cost of the program is $989.70.

Are there any prerequisites? Should I have previous experience in the subject from high school?

No prerequisites or previous experience are required. All you need is an interest in the broad subject matter and enthusiasm for discussing it with other students like you. 

Who teaches in the institute?

The institute will be taught collaboratively among six faculty members from the Departments of Philosophy and Political Science in addition to current Geneseo students, who will serve as mentors to those enrolled in the program. This way, participants get a broad exposure to Geneseo’s talented faculty and a wide range of perspectives on the issues.

Meet the Faculty and Student Mentors

How much reading will there be?

Students can expect to do approximately 20 pages of reading in advance of each session. Readings will be drawn from a variety of perspectives, eras, topics, and sources.

What topics will be covered?

The program will focus on six questions with contemporary relevance to our theme of Justice and Ethics in Modern America, emphasizing the connections between theory and practice:

  1. A More Perfect Union: What Are the Foundations of a Just Society?  
  2. What’s the Connection Between Morality and the Law? 
  3. What Obligations Do We Have as a Result of the Legacy of Slavery? 
  4. What Makes a Good Leader? 
  5. Should There Be a Limit to Free Speech? 
  6. How Should We Respond to Injustice, Both as Individuals and Communities? 
Will there be research opportunities?

Absolutely. The Summer Institute culminates with work on a research project linking current events to the institute themes. Students will present their projects in a research symposium open to members of the Geneseo campus community.

Will I get the chance to meet any current Geneseo students?

Yes! Students in the program will be grouped with current Geneseo students as mentors. They’ll meet in small groups with their mentors every week to talk about college life as well as to work on their research projects.

Meet the Student Mentors

How will the institute course show up on my transcript if I matriculate at Geneseo?

The institute course is coded as PHIL 188: Justice and Ethics in Modern America.

Do I have to know what I want to major in?

Not at all! We expect some students will know what they want to major in, but we know many students are still figuring that out. Participating in the Summer Institute may also help you as you determine your academic interests.

How do I apply?

Fill out our online application. The application deadline is April 6, 2021. Decisions will be sent to students on April 15, 2021.

I have more questions. Who should I talk to?

We’d love to hear from you! Feel free to email us Carly Herold at heroldc@geneseo.edu and/or David Levy at levy@geneseo.edu.

Learn More About Geneseo & Apply