High School Program


Student U students have the opportunity to participate in diverse programs that align with their academic needs and interests during the summer. 

SUMMER ACADEMY Grades 9, 10 

Students participate in a six-week academic enrichment program designed to pique our students’ intellectual curiosity while giving them the skills they need to succeed in high school. In addition to taking humanities, science and math classes, students also take art, wellness and college prep electives. Students also attend advisory and club times to build relationships amongst their peer group. All classes are taught by experienced teachers from the Durham community. 

INTERNSHIPS Grades 11, 12 

Students have the opportunity to intern in various local non-profits and businesses that align with their career interest. Internship placements include Girls Rock!, El Centro Hispano, The Animal Protection Society, Museum of Life and Science and Student U. All interns participate in professional development workshops on Fridays and second-year interns are paid for their service. 


Student U students tour in-state and out-of-state colleges as a part of their Student U experience to inform their college application and enrollment decisions. By their senior year, students will have visited at least 20 colleges and universities outside of North Carolina and 15 within the state. 


During the academic school year, students return to their local high schools and Student U continues to provide personal and academic support. 

ADVOCATES Grades 9-12 

Advocates are high school teachers, guidance counselors, community members and other school personnel hired to support Student U students throughout the year by holding weekly check-in meetings with students. Advocates help students and families navigate the high school experience.


Out-of-school tutoring is provided by Student U to students throughout the year. Volunteer tutors support students in homework completion, reinforcing academic content and developing organization and study skills. All students with a B or lower are required to participate in tutoring at their school and/or at Student U. 

The College Advisor leads sessions for students during their ninth and tenth grade years to focus on the upcoming college application process. The earlier curricula focuses on preparation (e.g. building community service experience/leadership, preparing for standardized tests such as the ACT/SAT), while curricula for eleventh and twelfth graders focuses on the college application process – college essays, choosing the “best fit” college, applying early to a wide range of schools, applying for scholarships/grants, and financing higher education. 

The whole Student U community will join together each May for our Decision Day as we celebrate the choices our students have made for their college experience.


Students have the opportunity to discover new passions and deepen their interest in art through a partnership with the Durham Art Guild. This program empowers students to develop their creative voices and artistic skills through 20 weeks of dedicated work with a local artist, involvement in the local arts community, and a month-long exhibition of their projects.


Students have access to relationships and opportunities outside of school to explore, learn and master skills necessary to succeed in school and beyond.


We encourage students to participate in at least one experiential learning opportunity each summer. Funds are available to all students to take advantage of local, national, or International summer opportunities. These range from pre-college programs and athletic camps to art and subject-specific camps. In recent years, students have participated in marine biology camp at UNC-Wilmington, forensics camps at Auburn University, Journalism camp at UNC-Chapel Hill, engineering and design camps at NCSU and travels abroad with their high school. 

U-PREP DAYS Grades 9-12 

U-Prep Days are held twice a year and bring the entire high school community together. Students, parents and staff participate in college prep workshops, community building and personal development. 

For more information about High School Opportunities, contact Michelle Norwood at michelle.bridgers@studentudurham.org.