Explo Summer Program

<p>Has anyone done this? I've been getting their brochures for years, and have always wanted to do it. I'd be in the Senior Program, which is at Yale. It'd be nice to spend some time at Yale. But the thing is, it's more of a fun program. You learn, but it's kind of, frivolous. It's more summer camp than program. I kind of still want to go, but I'm leaning against it in favor of Columbia (where I could seriously pursue my writing) or Oxbridge (don't know much about it, but I've heard it's good.) I might apply for TASP next summer, so I really do need to get my writing in check.</p>

<p>Does anyone want to prove that Explo is something besides fun?</p>

<p>Go to Columbia!!! I took advanced creative writing and it was beyond amazing! I posted what it's like on "How hard is it to get into Columbia summer school" (summer programs)</p>

<p>Explo is definitely more of a fun program. If you're interested in getting an inside view on college life then that is one thing, but the teachers are not from yale and the program has no association with the school so the classes are not particularly prestigious and the teachers not particularly challenging. Definitely go to Columbia, that program is very highly regarded and the professors are better. Oxbridge is also good although not run directly from the university so I would stick with Columbia.</p>

<p>VERY NON-SELECTIVE!!! no joke, my friend has a 66 average and got in...so it's probably not prestigious. But it's your life...why not?</p>

<p>Thanks guys! I'm still deciding, but I've definetely written Explo out of the equation.</p>

<p>wait! don't make your final decision!
I went to explo for six years, my final year was after my freshman year. I love explo, and I had a great experience.
It really depends what your looking for. True, Explo is not exactly rigorous. But explo allows you to learn through experience and in a fun way without having to worry about competition or grades. For example, I took an anthropology class and we did an ethnographic study of coffee shops. Or in my music theory class we brought in our favorite song and broke it down by chord progressions and certain instruments and connected them to early influences.
If you're at the beginning of high school, I would definitely recommend explo. It's a good summer program experience that sort of introduces you to the idea, and it's not looked down upon by colleges at all.<br>
I did a very intense summer program at Georgetown this summer and wished every day that I was back at explo. one of the nice things about explo is it gives you a lot of independence. You can go into town whenever you want, alone. There aren't a lot of rules, they just let you explore (pardon the pun). I would recommend explo if you are a freshman or a sophomore, and that you do Columbia next year. Otherwise, go for Columbia if you're approaching college.</p>

<p>Explo is a program for people who want to do nothing. Anyways, Explo and JSA Yale were there at the same time, and we didn't stop making fun of them for about one second. Even the JSA staff made fun of them. If you're considering TASP, explo is a waste of your time. It is really, really expensive too.</p>

<p>Could not agree more with lsun. Explo is a cash cow and nothing more than that. It is overpriced, overprotective of its students, and characterized by very superficial classes. I do not dispute that I had a wonderful time at Explo. But whenever you have that many people from so many different places come together you are bound to have fun. My concern is that Explo is nothing but a brand name, and that other places can do what they do better, for less money, and without their crazy policies. Classes were superficial and boring. In environmental chemistry, all we did was dip paper into soil and see what color it turned. In epidemiology, the instructor did not understand the first thing about the field: it's not about the individuals but the population. In my cultural journalism class, we were just told to write articles and received no instruction on how to write. Why does this happen? When Explo staff are hired they are given a list of courses that explo offers. They rank the courses in order of their ability to teach them. That's right. No one really contributes their own course. All explo's courses must be filled by someone, and explo just hopes that person will be somewhat qualified, even if that course is their 6th choice. Explo is designed primarily to please the parents: the people who pay the bills. This means that they are overprotective to an almost orweillian extent. Students are locked in the quad after 7 pm, and are required to check in 4 times a day. Students have nothing to do between 7 and 11 except just hang out in the quad and get bitten by mosquitos. During this time, counselors patrol the courtyards, checking behind the dumpsters every 5 minutes to make sure no one is making out. Even during the day, "walking the streets" means being confined to a .5 mile radius. Step even fifty feet out of bounds and you risk being kicked out of the program. Jaywalk and expect to have a long lecture with a counselor. RAs keep detailed log books about their students, trying to analyze their personality and to place them in "groups" for when they do sensitivity training. One night, a friend peeked at the RA's logbook. The RA wrote the following about one of the kids in the living group: "[Name Redacted] is a loner. He sometimes is seen following [Name Redacted], but I'm not sure if they are friends or if [Name Redacted] is just stalking him". The kid, in fact, was not a loner, and was best friends with the kid he was supposedly "stalking". These valuable insights by RAs into our personalities play a vital role in assigning us "groups" for sensitivity training, in which people are classified so that others can recognize the inherent diversity present in their friends. In reality, this training does nothing but polarize the explo community. Students are insulted by being classified as "introverted". Other students are forced to "step out of the closet" in the wrong place, at the wrong time. One kid used to sleep in boxers. After he found out through sensitivity training that his roommate was gay , he started sleeping in sweatpants and a sweatshirt. Last, and most frustrating, is the disciplinary system. If they even suspect you of drinking, they will haul you into the office and question you late into the night until you are forced to confess. My friend was suspected of drinking, and questioned without a break from midnight to two am. His parents were called BEFORE he was even brought into the office. He was guilty before he even had a chance to explain himself. He was kicked out, confined to the nurse's office, and not allowed to say goodbye to his friends. When we said goodbye to him against their wishes, we were all put on probation. This is an account of what I disliked about Explo. It was a great experience because of the people. But I have attended other summer programs, such as Summer@Brown , and the difference in management really lends itself to a much more positive atmosphere and real, challenging classes, not to mention much cheaper prices. If you are looking at Explo, look elsewhere. So many other programs do a much better job for less.</p>

<p>Wow, floatingriver, I never seriously considered this program, but I have received mailings and it actually looked kind of fun... but the sensitivity training part is so odd. The fact that they study everyone and write down their assessment kind of creeps me out.</p>

<p>Sorry for reviving this thread. I did a search for the program on google and found this page. I attended Explo last summer, and some of their crazy policies just made my blood boil, so I wanted to let CCers know about it. They don't officially call those activities "sensitivity training", but that's what in effect it is. The main issue is that it just feels oppressive when you must wear identification 24/7 and have to constantly check in, or have to dress strangely so you won't be recognized when you go to your favorite restaurant because it is 20 ft out of bounds. </p>

<p>Check out <a href="mailto:Summer@Brown">Summer@Brown</a>. I'm not saying this just because I am a Brown '14. Summer@Brown was the best time of my life and it's what made me love Brown. The classes are interesting and challenging, the people awesome, and the policies liberal - just like Brown. As long as you don't drink, do drugs, or commit a crime you can do whatever you want. An even if you get kicked out for drinking, they acknowledge you made a mistake but tell your friends what a wonderful person you are. My friends and I took the train to Boston one weekend without telling anyone. One night, I even went alone to the local projects to interview someone. I would not recommend doing what I did, but it shows how much freedom we had.</p>

<p>Wow, some people are really critical! I went to Explo last summer, and it was so much fun, and I really DID learn! In my fan fiction class, we learned all about how to write it while avoiding cliches and had tons of fun (my teacher sang "Avenue Q" and "Rent" songs with me almost every day. Where else would that happen?) In my screenwriting class, I learned the proper format of a screenplay, and ended up writing the first part of a major script. My only complaint is the size, and the fact that I had to go up ten flights of stairs to get to my dorm. But seriously, summer is supposed to be fun, but that doesn't mean you have to stop learning. If that's what you're aiming for, go to Explo. You'll learn a lot without the pressure of grades, homework, and deadlines. That's what school if for. Not to mention how awesome most of the people are. Some of my favorite memories are of me and two of my friends (one from DC and one from Greece) eating Chinese takeout in her room. Seriously, it's worth the money. Explo is awesome.</p>

Wow. Floatingriver sounds like one of the most privileged kids ever. You went to a local projects!? Heavens!? How did the peons you met live up to your expectations? My God. If you really did go to Brown I’m sure mummy and daddy did all the work to get you in. Gross.