Summer Program for Academically Talented Youth

 More information and Applications will be available January 13, 2017.


Summer Program for Academically Talented Youth in cooperation with Duke TIP

June 25-July 14, 2017

The University of Southern Mississippi, through a cooperative effort with the Duke University Talent Identification Program, is pleased to offer the three week residential Summer Program for Academically Talented Youth, designed for very bright students who are currently enrolled in grades 7, 8, 9 and 10. The University of Southern Mississippi assumes full responsibility for the instruction, administration and outcome of this program. The Summer Program is designed to provide a balance of educational, cultural and recreational experiences. Upon completion of the program parents will be sent a detailed grade report to forward to the student’s school. At the discretion of school administrators, the student may receive school credit and/or appropriate placement for course work completed during the three-week program.

The program will be held on the beautiful campus of Southern Miss in Hattiesburg, located in south central Mississippi, approximately 100 miles from Jackson, Mississippi; Mobile, Alabama; and New Orleans, Louisiana. It is important that students select classes in which they are interested and to which their best efforts will be given for three weeks. If the first choice is not available, placement will be in the next available choice.

Academic Courses

Classes, taught by outstanding teachers, meet six hours each weekday and three hours on Saturday. Students participate in quality learning experiences that allow them to progress at a rate and a level appropriate for high ability students. Each class is limited in enrollment. Students select one of the following courses, each of which is offered in a fast paced, challenging format. SAT or ACT (taken in 7th grade) eligibility requirements are noted after each course description. 

Residential Accommodations

The residential component is planned to be an integral part of the learning experience. The residential hall provides an equally comfortable environment for academic activities and leisure time. Students live in an air conditioned dormitory a short walking distance from the dining hall, campus resources (such as the library) and campus recreational facilities. Residential counselors supervise students when they are not in class. Approximately six hours each weekday and three hours on Saturday mornings will be devoted toward group classroom studies, with one hour per evening provided for individual study. Cultural and recreational activities will be planned as well. There are many opportunities for students to enjoy getting acquainted with other young people of similar abilities and interests.



Unboxing the Literary Writing Artist

This course is designed to be a writer’s workshop with emphasis on turning the experiences of real life into lively, creative prose. Students will become aware of their own habits as writers through writing essays, poetry, and other forms of creative writing. They will discuss and practice the process of writing from brainstorming creative ideas to organization, analysis and revision.

The Master Contenders of Debate

This course provides instruction in how to  acquire, analyze and evaluate information in  order to  organize effective  arguments, and it provides practice in making those arguments. Skill in debate helps the individual think logically, clearly and quickly; it enables a student to identify flawed       reasoning and argue  persuasively. It also contributes to the student’s understanding of self and confidence in the  student’s own ability to analyze issues.

Forensic Sleuthing: What’s the Investigative Verdict?

Forensic science is the application of science to those criminal and civil laws that are enforced by police agencies in a criminal justice system. Students will be introduced to such topics as crime scene  Investigation, photography, fingerprinting analysis, trace evidence, packaging and       presentation of  evidence, fiber and hair comparison, and glass reconstruction. Students will acquire knowledge in forensic science through professional readings, textbooks, hands-on activities,      lectures, group discussions, seminars with practitioners, and videotapes.

Human Anatomy, Physiology, and Body Smarts

This course involves the study of the structure and functioning of the human body. Each body     system will be studied and seen as an integrated part of an entire organism. The systems to be studied are  Integumentary,  skeletal, muscular, nervous, endocrine, circulatory, urinary, digestive, respiratory and reproductive. Clinical applications (using disorders of the systems) will integrate the knowledge of the course into  practical application.

Math—The Everyday Calculator

This series of subjects includes Algebra I and II, Geometry, Trigonometry, Pre-calculus, Calculus and Modern Analysis. The goal of this course is for each student to learn as much mathematics as proves feasible. Most students will complete at least one mathematics subject during the course. Diagnostic  testing and individualized instruction allow students to work at their own pace and focus on material they have not previously mastered. Students must enjoy mathematics and be able to work independently to gain the most from this class. Students are required to have a graphing calculator.

A Polymer Primer for the STEM Investigator

Students will explore the world of polymers, the materials that surround us in our daily lives, by  participating in inquiry-based laboratory experiments and hands-on research projects. The history, recent developments, applications, and the processing of glass, ceramics, metals and polymers will be examined. The properties of major commercial polymers, raw material sources, and the organization of the polymer  industry will also be studied. Since the interdisciplinary nature of polymer science encompasses several fields, including chemistry and physical science, students gain exposure to science’s multifaceted realm.

Brain Power: The Ingenuity of the Mind

Emphasis will be on the scientific and theoretical aspects of psychology, including biological bases of   behavior, development, learning and adaptive behavior, sensation and perception, measurement and  statistical methods. Material is presented through textbook reading, lecture, discussion and  demonstration.


Program Costs:

1. A NON-REFUNDABLE application fee of $20.00 must be paid at the time of application.  If selected for enrollment, this fee will be applied to the cost of the program.

2. The total cost of the program is $2100.00 and includes room and board, meals, and limited accident insurance.

 Scholarship Opportunities:

A limited number of scholarships is available for this program. Scholarships will be awarded based on demonstrated financial need, student acheivement and promise, and the availability of funds.  We will award scholarships until available funds are depleted, therefore early application is advisable.  We cannot guarantee that all eligible applicants will receive aid.  Please be courteous to your school administration and recommenders by allowing adequate time for mail delivery. NO SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATIONS WILL BE REVIEWED AFTER THE APPLICATION DEADLINE.

Students interested in receiving scholarships for this program must provide the following:

  • evidence of financial need
  • evidence of good standing in their school or learning community,
  • two letters of recommendation from teachers, community leaders, or other non-family members who are aware of the student’s abilities
  • both of the following

a.  One essay: 500 words maximum on the topic, “The impact of advanced course work on my personal goals.”

b.  A portfolio showcasing the academic or creative abilities of the student. Each entry must be accompanied by an explanation, written by the student, relating how the entry evidences his or her ability or need for extra opportunities.


 Students experiments in the Summer Program for Academically Talented Youth HA&P