Summer Scholars Academy

Summer Scholars Academy

Contact Us

Summer Scholars Academy 
c/o Beth Barry
Texas Lutheran University
1000 W. Court St.
Seguin, TX 78155

Phone: 830-708-4231

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July 6-17, 2015

Apply Now!

2015 Courses   |   About SSA   |   Ways to Pay for SSA

2015 Courses

In the morning from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., students will attend a three credit-hour course in the subject of their choice. An optional workshop in math or writing may be taken in the afternoon for one credit-hour. Students have an opportunity for civic engagement by participating in a service project earning them 12 service hours. A special guest speakers series is also offered to inspire and entertain students.

Three Credit-Hour Courses (students choose one)

BIOL 131 Issues in Biology: Plagues Then and Now Learn about the impact of infectious diseases on humanity. What threat do we face from Ebola, West Nile, or the flu? We’ll touch on a number of outbreaks and you’ll investigate one pathogen in depth. Professor Bob Jonas - Ph.D. in Microbiology from The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Dr. Jonas also was a visiting professor at Harlaxton College in England through the TLU Study Abroad program.

COMM 332 Leadership for Social Change Take an experiential approach to analyzing how people become and act as agents of change. Citizenship, communication, conflict, ethics, motivation, power and team building are all emphasized. Professor Robin Bisha - Ph.D. from Indiana University and M.A. in journalism and mass communication from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is a blogger and active participant in animal rescue groups and causes.

COMM 374 Professional Speaking Develop a practical approach to public speaking and learn to adapt to diverse audiences in a variety of professional settings. Persuasive and informative speaking, research-based argument construction and collaborative projects are also emphasized. Professor Steve Vrooman - Ph.D. in Rhetoric from Arizona State University and chair of TLU’s English and Communications Studies department. Prof. Vrooman is the author of “The Zombie Guide to Public Speaking,” and recently presented “Our Brains are a Twitter” at TEDx San Antonio.

GEOG 379 More Than Chocolate: Geography of Food Discover how geography relates to food studies with an emphasis on globalization. Examine the origins of foods native to the Americas and how the Columbian exchange impacted American agriculture, as well as modern issues within the rise of industrial agriculture. Professor Judy Hoffmann - Ph.D. from The University of Texas at Austin and director of TLU’s social entrepreneurship program. She also leads TLU’s adult education partnerships program.

ISYS 133 Applications Software Examine digital media as a tool for seeing, exploring, expressing, and social critique by exploring the interactivity and narrative of digital media through the creation of audio and video projects. Students will understand how applications like Windows Movie, Photo Story, PowerPoint and WordPress are used for current business environments, classroom application and personal use. Professor Rodrick Shao - Ed.D. in Instructional Technology & Distance Education from Nova Southeastern University in Florida. He also leads the Watoto Project, a project benefiting orphans in Tanzania.

PRWB 130 Personal Well-Being Develop an appreciation and understanding of the dimensions of personal well-being. Learn about healthy decision-making, lifelong fitness and nutrition, personal management, and habits conducive to optimal well-being and quality of life. Professor Tiffiny Sia - Ph.D. and M.S. in Experimental Psychology with Social Emphasis from Texas Christian University. She works with TLU psychology students on faculty-student research projects and also leads a study abroad class in the summer.

Optional Afternoon Workshops (One Credit-Hour; students choose one)

MATH 119A Problem-Solving The ability to reason and problem solve prepares students for success, not just in the mathematics classroom, but in everyday situations and events as well. You will develop critical thinking and analytical problem solving skills for mathematics-based endeavors while exploring challenging problems in a workshop-style setting that prepares you for college-level math courses. 

ENGL 119F Do the Write Thing: Intro to College Composition Critical thinking and the development of reading and writing skills are essential to success in college. Primary learning activities include reading, writing papers, learning revision techniques, and maintaining blogs. You will gain a solid start on a college writing portfolio, complete with a photo essay, as a web-based project that incorporates principles of both written and visual rhetoric.

Special Guest Speaker Series – Be Informed, Inspired and Entertained

Attend our guest speaker series, Bulldogs Lead, and hear from alumni, current student leaders, and community leaders as they share their insights on leadership that inspires and the characteristics young leaders will want to develop to be successful.

Opportunity for Civic Engagement – Animal Rescue

Earn 12 service hours working with animal rescue and adoption volunteers to improve the quality of life for our local furry friends. Learn the basics of socialization, humane training, and advocacy.

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About SSA

What is SSA?

The Summer Scholars Academy is a two-week summer academy for high school students who have completed their freshman year. Students enroll in a three credit-hour course chosen from a list of courses submitted by faculty members and approved by TLU departments and colleges. A one credit-hour workshop in either writing or math is also offered for students interested in improving skills in those areas. SSA features a Civic Engagement component where students earn 12 service hours and a Speaker Series designed to help students develop leadership skills.

When is it?

SSA 2015 will run July 6-17. Scholars will arrive on campus on Sunday, July 5, move into their residence halls, and attend an opening convocation and reception, at which time they will meet the academy faculty and staff. Classes will begin Monday, July 6 and end on Friday, July 17. Closing activities will be held on Friday, following the last class period.

Who can attend?

YOU, that’s who! All students who have completed at least their freshman year in high school and have not yet graduated high school and meet the following criteria:

  • Have successfully taken the PSAT and/or rank in the top half of their class
  • Receive a strong recommendation from a teacher or guidance counselor


Deposit, tuition, room, board, books, and all associated activity fees and materials costs are included in the price of $1,400 for the two-week academy. A $100 deposit must accompany your application. The remaining balance is due by June 15. Need-based financial aid is available. To apply for financial aid please submit the Financial Aid Request Form.

Admission Process

  1. Apply for admission by submitting the Online Application and insert your credit card information to pay your $100 deposit. You can use the Online Application with a credit card or e-check.
  2. Submit your Recommendation Letter and current high school transcript.
  3. Upon acceptance, you will receive notification from SSA staff and further directions on how to complete your registration.

Purpose of SSA

When you go to college, you enter a whole new world: new room, new roommate, new classes, and new expectations. It can be a tough transition. The college search is about finding more than just the right major, but the right fit and the right experience. SSA gives you a taste of the future, and lets you "try on" the college experience, so that when the future arrives, you’ll be ready for it.


Texas Lutheran University is a private university located in Seguin (population 25,000), approximately 35 miles east of San Antonio and 50 miles south of Austin. Enrollment at TLU is approximately 1400 undergraduate students. TLU has been repeatedly recognized by national publications such as U.S. News and World Report and The Princeton Review.

While attending SSA, students will have access to university facilities, including: library, computer labs, bookstore, snack bar and lounge, swimming pool, racquetball and tennis courts and the fitness center.

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Ways to pay for SSA

Here are some tips to get you started on raising funds to attend SSA!

  • Ask a local business to sponsor you. Sometimes restaurants will agree to donate a percentage of their sales for one evening to a good cause. That’s you — you are an investment in the future!
  • Ask your church community for financial help. Some churches have ministries dedicated to helping young members realize their dreams.
  • Have a good old-fashioned car wash.
  • Save babysitting or pet-sitting money. Ask relatives to match your earnings. (Hey, it can’t hurt to ask!)
  • Begin a small lawn-mowing business.
  • Ask local civic groups for support. Lions, Kiwanis, Knights of Columbus… these groups have a vested interest in your future, too. Write a persuasive letter stating what you hope to accomplish.
  • Ask neighbors to donate gently used items for a garage sale.
  • Inquire with school clubs and organizations about scholarships for summer academic programs. Many Gifted and Talented Programs offer such help.
  • Inquire with the TLU admissions office using the Financial Aid Request Form. You may qualify for need-based financial assistance.
  • All of the above... or, get creative and send us an email about how you found a way to pay for SSA!

Dream Big. You can do it!

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Upcoming Events

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February 13, 2016 9:00 am - 12:00 pm

Guest Cello Recital: Christopher Adkins

February 16, 2016 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

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