Engineering Summer Program
Engineering Summer Program (ESP) is a fully funded, six-week residential program for students who will be high school juniors or seniors in the upcoming school year. The ESP course curriculum includes math, physics, chemistry, engineering, and technical communications. Other structured programming such as industry site visits, fieldtrips, guest lectures, workshops, and faculty mentoring will help you gain a better understanding of the field of engineering and its applications. Learn more about the Engineering Summer Program (ESP).
JOIN US IN SUMMER 2015.
Camp Dates: Saturday, June 20th - Friday, July 31st 2015
The ESP Application is now closed.
Participation Requirements and Benefits
The ESP Program is targeted to high school students from groups traditionally under-represented in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) field. African-American, Native American, Latino/a, Laotian, Vietnamese, Hmong, and Cambodian students are especially encouraged to apply. Students from rural regions, as well as women from all backgrounds are also strongly encouraged to apply.
To take part in ESP you must have a strong interest in math and engineering; be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident; be entering your junior or senior year for the upcoming school year; have completed at least one year of algebra, geometry, and chemistry by June of the program year; and have a minimum grade-point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
The program challenges students to think creatively, work in teams and draw on previous knowledge and experiences to solve problems both inside and outside the classroom. The program consist of rigorous preparation in engineering foundation courses consistent with our engineering degree programs.
ESP provides participants with a hands-on experience in design; group study and problem solving that will be transferable to the students' future high school and collegiate coursework. Students will also participate in faculty-led discussions, team building, professional development programming, as well as workshops that will help students navigate the college admission and financial-aid process.
Admission and Application Checklist
The Engineering Summer Program (ESP) is highly selective and admission decisions are not made on any one metric including race, gender, ethnicity, disability, socioeconomic status, grade trends, letters of recommendation, and available resources. Each year the applicant pool is unique and reviewed independently of previous application cycles.
Although admission to the University of Wisconsin-Madison is not the focus of ESP, for its graduates, there is a strong record of successful admission to UW-Madison and other engineering programs. The admission decision to the Engineering Summer Program is in no way associated with that of the Office of Admission at UW-Madison. ESP applicants are encouraged to apply to the University of Wisconsin-Madison regardless of the decision to be admitted to ESP. Qualified students may be denied admission to the program. The final admission decisions are the discretion of the ESP review committee.
- - Completed application form
- - Personal essay
- - Official transcript
- - Two letters of recommendation: one from a math teacher and one from a science teacher
- - Non-refundable $40 application fee. Please make the check out to "Engineering Summer Program" and write "Application Fee" in the memo section. PLEASE NOTE: The application fee may be waived if your family is eligible for free or reduced price lunch and other special circumstances. Any participant requesting a fee waiver must complete the Application Waiver Request Form. Please note that application materials must contain all the items on the application checklist and be post-marked by April 1st in order to receive consideration for admission
ESP is designed to focus on academic enrichment related to math, science, and engineering; provide an orientation to the UW-Madison environment and collegiate experience; and demonstrate the importance of early preparation for the college-bound student. Participants will interact with UW faculty/staff, students, program alumni, practicing engineers and other talented peers who share the same interest in mathematics, science and engineering.
- Mathematics: Take a placement test to determine the right math course for you.
- Pre-Calculus: Increase your proficiency in algebra to prepare for college-level calculus.
- Calculus: Focus on both the conceptual and computational aspects of calculus.
- Chemistry: Gain an introduction to college-level chemistry, including the use of math as an integral tool.
- Physics: Learn the basic principles of physics as they apply to engineering.
- Technical Communications: Improve your skills in writing, public speaking, and visually presenting technical information.
- Industrial Site Visits: Engage with professional engineers in action at Rockwell Automation, Abbott, GE Healthcare, EPIC Systems, Designs Concepts and other area businesses.
Weekends are full of fun activities and exploration on campus and beyond.
Housing and Meals
Housing and meals are included as part of the program. While attending ESP, participants will reside in University Housing. Lodging will be in Dejope Hall — a University Housing residence hall conveniently located on the Lakeshore campus. To foster a real sense of community, you will share a room with another program participant. Each air-conditioned room includes twin beds with bed linens and pillows, minifridges, desks, and internet. Floor lounges include televisions, comfortable seating, and an attached kitchenette. There will be no telephones in individual rooms; therefore, students are encouraged to bring a cell phone. Laundry and vending machines are located on the main floor of Dejope Hall. Meals will be served three times per day, seven days a week in the Four Lakes Market, located in Dejope Hall. Dining services will provide a variety of youth-friendly and healthy selections, including vegetarian and gluten-free options.
Participants will be supervised by program staff. Current undergraduate students are hired and trained to provide supervision and daily programming — including weekends. The counselors live in University Housing on the same floor as participants.
Spotlight: ESP 2014
Past Intro to Engineering Final Presentations
Intro to Engineering Final Presentations
Each group was given a task to either design a mechanism to change a light bulb for someone restricted to a wheelchair, to design a product for someone with arthritis to use while in the kitchen, while opening a pill bottle, or while using any common tool or writing utensil.
We have selected clips from each group to take you through their Design Process and Final Products. Enjoy!
Make a Gift to ESP
Make a Gift to ESP
We’re looking for corporate sponsors for future programs. Please ask us about our information packet.