Summer Field Institute for High School Students


Earn College Credit in the Most Beautiful Places on Earth

College of the Atlantic's Summer Field Institute includes three distinctive programs for rising high school juniors and seniors: Islands Through Time, Rivers: A Wilderness Odyssey, and Farm to Fork: Understanding Our Food. Our classrooms include canoes on the river, farm fields, rocky island shores and the woods and waters of Maine and Acadia National Park. Here students explore the connections between science, art, and the humanities while they engage in an intensive program combining academic work with field experiences. These programs will provide you with opportunities to reflect on your place in the world and develop skills you will use in college and beyond.

College of the Atlantic focuses on human ecology - the relationship between humans and our environments. Each Summer Field Institute program explores its central theme using an interdisciplinary approach: for instance, you may spend the morning discussing a novel about life on a remote island, and spend the afternoon exploring the shore of that same island, spotting whales and identifying seabirds and their nesting grounds.

All programs have a component that takes place on the COA campus and Mount Desert Island, which includes Acadia National Park. In addition, students spend time on extended trips to the college’s island research stations, our organic farms, or the Allagash Wilderness Waterway in northern Maine.

Our programs are designed for rising juniors and seniors who:

  • Are curious about the world and ready to engage
  • Have strong academic backgrounds and are excited about learning
  • Want to be challenged
  • Think outside of the box
  • Value learning both inside and outside the classroom
  • Want to change the world and help create a more sustainable future 

Are you ready for the challenge?

Watch the video below and explore the individual course pages for a better sense of these unique programs.

COA's Summer Field Institute from College of the Atlantic on Vimeo.

Want more details?

Interested in learning about dates, details, and costs for the COA Summer Field Institute? You can find out more at the course websites below:


Application Form (PDF)

Applications are due by May 4, 2015.

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