Experimentation. Exploration. Innovation. The building blocks of science.

The Bioscience Institute at the Wake Forest Summer Immersion Program is an unforgettable summer experience for high school students. Students will learn the fundamentals of scientific inquiry and experimentation, gaining experience with data collection and analysis while deepening their understanding of biological theory. This hands-on, interactive course will cover how human activities impact the natural world, focusing on ecology, and environmental biology.  

At a Glance

2024 Dates: Week of June 9 – 14 and week of June 23 – 28

Waitlists have been implemented for both sessions of the 2024 Bioscience Institute. Students may still apply, register for different institute sessions, or apply to the Online Immersion Program – study online with Wake Forest anywhere, anytime, at your own pace.

Program Length: Overnight, Sunday – Friday

Tuition: $3,000

Location:  Winston-Salem, NC – Wake Forest University Campus

Who Can Apply?: Current 9th – 12th grade students

*Courses carry no secondary school or college credit. Upon completion of the program, an official Wake Forest University Certificate of Completion will be awarded to all Bioscience Institute participants.

What You’ll Experience

Topics Covered:

  • Ecology 
  • Environmental biology and conservation
  • Evolution and natural selection
  • Human disturbance and urban biology
  • Scientific inquiry and experimentation

Hands-On Experiences:

  • Experimental design and implementation
  • Data collection and analysis
  • Explore gardens and nature preserves 
  • Field trip to Wake Downtown facility
  • Microscopy techniques

A Day in the Life

Typical Daily Schedule
  • 8:00 am – Morning Meeting and Breakfast
  • 9:00 am – Welcome and Introduction
  • 9:30 am – Topic: Trophic webs and community ecology
  • 10:00 am – Collection: Organisms of Lake Katherine
  • 11:15 am – Activity: Creating a trophic web 
  • 12:45 pm – Lunch
  • 1:45 pm – Topic: Introduction to microscopy
  • 2:15 pm – Activity: Lake Katherine organisms under the microscope
  • 3:30 pm – Activity: Data analysis and presentation work time
  • 4:30 pm – Debrief and Reflections
  • 5:30 pm – Dinner
  • 6:30 pm – Evening Activities
  • 7:30 pm – Free Time
  • 9:30 pm – Prepare for Bed
  • 10:30 pm – Lights Out

*The “A Day in the Life” sample schedule is subject to change. 

Meet the Academic Leader

Dr. Anna Parker

Academic Leader, Bioscience Institute

Dr. Parker is an Assistant Teaching Professor in the Biology Department at Wake Forest University, where she teaches Field Biology and Evolution. Dr. Parker received her PhD in Biology from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2023, her MS in Zoology from the University of Wyoming in 2019, and her BS in Biology and BA in Chemistry from the University of Rochester in 2016. Dr. Parker researches the effects of global change on plant-insect interactions, and her teaching centers evidenced-based practices that improve equity, inclusion, and access.