UT PREP FAQ's

UT PREP FAQ's: 

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I’ve completed all registration components by November 25th but I need more time to make the full payment. How can I keep my seat?

Complete all the registration components well before the November 25th date. November 15th would be a good deadline. Then send us an email stating that you will be unable to pay the full price by the due date. We must receive this email before November 25th. Our extension policy is: you will need to pay at least $500 of your camp fees by November 25th to hold the seat and avoid the $100 late fee. Then, you can pay the remaining balance by December 15th. All payments of application and camp fees are non-refundable.

 

I have applied for a scholarship. When will I hear if I qualified?

Scholarships are approved in the order of applications received. Scholarships are only given to students who provide a letter stating that they qualify for federal free and reduced lunch. Scholarships are awarded as funding allows.

Students who cannot provide a letter may apply for a scholarship. Only applicants with high financial need and who provide documentation are considered for scholarships. Scholarships of this type are rarely granted. We will begin awarding scholarships as soon as we receive payment from your district and other grant funding.  

 

I have forgotten my confirmation number to access my student’s registration. How do I get it?

Send us an email from the email address you’d like us to use that includes your student’s name and 2019 PREP level. We will send the confirmation number to that email address.

 

Why choose UT PREP?

Families choose UT PREP for a number of reasons. Our camps are rigorous and rewarding. Students take classes that are challenging with their academic peers from all across Central Texas. Our curriculum has been approved by the Texas Education Agency and is taught by content experts. And it’s fun! Students benefit from the resources of the world-famous Tier 1 research University of Texas.

Our engaging classes encourage students to take risks in a supportive environment that meets and grows their intellectual capabilities. Who wouldn’t want that?


How is the program structured?

UT PREP is designed to be a five-week camp that students take for four consecutive summers beginning in middle school. Each summer, the academics build on the previous year’s camp. The camp day runs from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday.


Who is eligible?

Students who are currently in sixth or seventh grade are eligible to enroll in PREP 1. In order to qualify, students must demonstrate achievement in their math and science courses. Once students qualify and enroll, they take a math placement test that helps us tailor our instruction to their needs.


I have an eighth-grader who would love this camp. Can she enroll even though she is older? OR I have a fifth-grader who is extremely smart. Can he enroll even though he's younger?

Sorry, no. UT PREP is most effective when students are a part of their cohort for four years. UTeach Outreach does offer other camps for which your student might qualify. You can visit our summer camps website to learn more.  


How is the day structured?

Students arrive on the UT campus by 8 a.m. Once here, students take four courses on any given day. Those courses depend on the student’s level, but in PREP 1 all students take Logic, Problem Solving, Engineering and College and Career Exploration. Each week, the students also play sports at UT’s Gregory Gym and other UT venues.

 

Is transportation provided?

Transportation is only provided for students who are attending UT PREP from participating districts. For 2019, the districts participating in UT PREP are Austin ISD, Del Valle ISD, and Austin Achieve. Specific bus pick-up and drop-off locations and times for participating districts will be posted on the Camp Logistics Page. If your student isn't riding the bus, you may drop them off between 7:45 and 8:00 am each day. You may pick them up between 3:45 and 4:00 pm each day. If you pick your student up after 4:00 pm, there will be a $70 after-care fee each day.


The coursework looks challenging. Who teaches the classes?

We’re glad that you asked. We think a couple of things set our camp apart from others.

First, all students who complete the four-year program are eligible to receive the STEM endorsement from the TEA. Each year of camp, students earn one component of the STEM endorsement.

Second, our courses are taught by professional teachers who are content masters rather than relying on student interns. Instructors are selected for their expertise in their field of study. We also use student interns, most of whom have classroom experience thanks to our nationally recognized UTeach Teacher Preparation Program. Additionally, our camp is overseen by experienced staff members who are committed to creating a positive, memorable experience, including a full-time site director and on-site social worker.

Rest assured that all staff have undergone a highly competitive application process, passed an annual background check, and received training in the protection of minors before beginning work.


How much work is expected of my student?

UT PREP students work hard. The students enjoy the challenge and rigor, and we attempt to structure our coursework so that most of it can be done during the day. However, there may be times when students have homework. This is especially true if a student doesn’t use his or her classroom time wisely.

 

Does my student need a computer for class?

No. We will provide all necessary academic supplies.

 

Do we need to pay for textbooks and other supplies?

No. All materials are covered by the camp tuition.

 

Do the students receive grades?

Yes. As mentioned earlier, our curriculum is TEA-approved. In order for our students to receive high-school credit and the STEM endorsement, we are required to evaluate students (as well as ensure attendance; more on that later). But know that we ensure that students do well in their coursework. The hands-on, experiential classrooms make learning fun, and we offer tutoring if students need help.

During PREP 4, we will talk to families about how and whether to pursue the STEM endorsement as each case is individual. We want to make sure our coursework strengthens a student’s college admissions portfolio.


Tell me more about the other activities at camp outside the classroom?

One advantage of being on the UT campus is the ability to extend the camp outside of the classroom. We build time for recreational activities, such as racquetball, swimming, bowling and ultimate Frisbee. As part of our College and Career Exploration lessons, we tour UT dormitories and the Student Union so that they become familiar with college life. The UT PREP 4 students tour local college campuses so that they can learn about the array of higher-education options available to them. For instance, we’ve taken students to Southwestern University in Georgetown, a small liberal arts college, as well as St. Edward’s University, a small, private university. We’ve also visited Huston-Tillotson University, a historically black college.

All of these activities and field trips are part of our philosophy to teach the whole child and to reinforce a college-going culture.
 

You mentioned attendance requirements. Can you tell me more about those?

Students are required to have regular attendance and are allowed no more than three absences during the five-week period. Classes cover advanced material in a short amount of time. Much of the learning is project-based and completed through group work or collaborative activities. In addition, our staff strongly believes in cultivating a co-curricular environment that develops the whole student, enriching their cultural, interpersonal, emotional and moral growth. When a student misses components of the program or fails to align with behavioral expectations or policies, this disrupts the learning and program experience for all students.

We understand that students have many opportunities and commitments in the summer. This is one reason that we don’t have camp the week of July Fourth; we know that families like to vacation then. Program fees will not be refunded for students who are dismissed from the program for failure to meet the Participation Policies.

Students also should arrive promptly. Tardies count toward accumulated absences.


My child has a disability. Can he attend?

If your child has a disability and would like to receive consideration for reasonable accommodation, contact our office at summercamps@uteach.utexas.edu 


Is there a dress code?

UT PREP expects its participants to dress in a manner that is appropriate for a learning environment. Students will do a lot of walking on site and should wear comfortable, closed-toe shoes. Students should bring adequate clothing to participate in recreational and athletic activities on the days those are scheduled (shorts, t-shirts, bathing suits and towels if needed). Students are prohibited from wearing clothing that displays offensive slogans or graphics, exposes undergarments, or is otherwise revealing. Students should refrain from wearing clothing that is unsafe for program activities, and clothing that advertises products or services that are illegal or illegal for minors. If staff determine that a student is not meeting these expectations, the student will be asked to change their attire. Swimwear will be required if a student wishes to enter the pool during swim time.
 

Can my student have his phone while at camp?

We allow students to bring their phones to camp in case there are transportation issues, but once on campus we collect the phones from PREP 1 and 2 students to minimize distractions. We have special camp phone numbers if there is an emergency and you need to reach your student.


What do students do about lunch? Can I send money for them to buy meals at the food court?

We provide every camper with lunch and morning and afternoon snacks. If your student would prefer to bring his own lunch, that’s fine. If you student has special dietary needs, feel free to contact us at summercamps@uteach.utexas.edu.

We do not allow students to purchase food from on-campus vendors such as the Student Union, or from vending machines. Also, we have a policy of no soft drinks at camp.

 

How do I claim credit for UT PREP 1, UT PREP 2, UT PREP 3, and/or UT PREP 4?

We recommend that students wait until their junior year of high school to claim credit for UT PREP. In order to claim credit, you will need to bring the paper transcript you received on the last day of camp at graduation to your school's counselor. 

 

What if I still have questions after reading the FAQs?

If you still have a question please email us at summercamps@uteach.utexas.edu and we will get back to you within 48 hours during office hours. Hours of operation are 7:30-4, Monday-Thursday. The office is closed for all holidays, Thanksgiving Break (November 19th-23rd, 2018), Winter Break (December 24th, 2018 - January 7th, 2019), and Spring Break (March 18th-22nd., 2019). 

 

Is transportation provided?

No transportation is provided for Research in Life Science Camp, Chemistry Camp, Physics & Math Camp, Research & Statistics Camp, or Engineering & Computer Science Camp. Partnering school districts may choose to provide bus transportations to students in UT PREP 1-4. Past partnering districts have included Austin ISD and Del Valle ISD. You can read more updated transportation information on our logistics page

 

Can I submit my application without payment? Or payment without application?

You must submit your application and application fee at the same time. Your camper's application will not be reviewed until we have received their application fee or you have contacted us regarding the application fee. Seats will fill in the order that we receive payment, completed applications, and all attachments from qualified applicants. If you pay by credit card, the application fee will be charged once your application is reviewed. Once you are accepted, you will be notified of any scholarships you have been awarded. You will have one week to accept/decline the scholarship award, following which any pending amounts will be charged to your credit card. 

 

How do I pay the $25 application fee?

Please pay the fee in the online application using a credit card or mail a check to: UTeach Outreach Attn: Kate Waldman, 103 W 24th St. - Stop G2550, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, 78712 . You can make the check out to The University of Texas at Austin. Please include your student's full name in the memo line. Please note: your application will not be considered complete if we have not received your application fee. 

 

My child is very advanced or my child sometimes has difficulty with a particular subject. How do you make sure they are challenged/not left behind during the camps?

In each of our camps, our instructors spend time with each camper and make sure the lessons are tailored to your child's specific skill level. All campers will be challenged and grow during their time with UTeach Outreach. During the application process, it's important that you provide all information about your student's learning needs or about prior knowledge they may be bringing to camp to ensure that they are placed in the correct program. 

Where do the camps take place? 

All 2019 camps will take place at The University of Texas at Austin. Off-campus field trips take place for some UT PREP camps.

 

How long are the camps?

You may drop off your camper between 7:45 and 8am each day. You may pick up your camper between 3:45pm and 4:00pm each day. If your child is picked up after 4:00pm, there will be a $70 after-care fee each day.

 

What should my child bring? Do they need to pack a lunch? 

We provide all camp materials for all camps. Closed-toe shoes are required every day and a conservative summer dress code must be followed. Swimwear will be required if the camp includes swimming. We recommend that students bring a water bottle, a cap for walking outside, and sunscreen if desired. Note: UTeach Outreach staff will not apply sunscreen for campers. 

If your student chooses to bring their own lunch or snacks, do not pack nuts or products with nuts for your child since it is very likely that at least one student with nut allergies will attend each camp. Lunch and a snack will be provided by UT PREP every day. 

 

Where do I drop my camper off and will there be parking on campus?

UT PREP 3 & 4:

Pick-up and drop-off will be at the intersection of 24th & Guadalupe Street between 7:45 and 8am. When heading North on Guadalupe, you can turn right onto 24th street and there will be UTeach staff members on the south side of 24th street to meet your camper and walk them down to Painter Hall. If you prefer to walk with your camper to the pick-up zone, there are parking meters on Guadalupe, 24th, and Dean Keeton Streets (please be aware that those areas fill up quickly in the mornings). If you arrive after 8:00, you will need to park and pay at a meter and walk your camper up to their classroom.  

UT PREP 1 & 2:  

Pick-up and drop-off will be at Winship Circle between 7:45 and 8am. Winship Circle is a round-about at the intersection of 23rd Street and San Jacinto Blvd. Only one lane of traffic is allowed inside Winship Circle at a time. When pulling over to the right (outer edge) of the circle, please do not block any crosswalks. Follow the instructions of the UTeach staff to facilitate a smooth pick-up and drop-off process. If you prefer to walk with your camper to the pick-up zone, there are parking meters on Dean Keeton Street (please be aware that these meters fill up quickly in the mornings). If you arrive after 8:00, you will need to park and pay at a meter and walk your camper up to their classroom. 

Bus dropoff is at San Jacinto and 24th street. If your student normally rides a bus, but you need to drive him to camp one day, please use his camp's designated pick-up/drop-off zone (either Winship Circle or 24th & Guadalupe). Cars may not drop off campers at San Jacinto and 24th Street. 

Can I make partial payments or pay installments?

We do not accept partial payments or installments. Registration will be closed when seats are filled.

 

What is your refund policy?

There are no refunds available for any camp fees paid. Exceptions are not made for students who need to drop the program or who do not pass the program. Application fees are also non-refundable.

 

Are there scholarships available?

Some scholarships are available for UT PREP 1, 2, 3, and 4 based on documented need and available funding. We expect the camps to fill quickly.

 

Do you accept students from Austin surrounding communities or only Austin?

Any student is welcome to any of our camps. We do not provide housing for students attending our camps. Texas Education Agency (TEA) HS credit for coursework completed in UT PREP 1-4 is accepted in most  districts but not all are aware or have been contacted to add the courses to their lists. If your student's school is not aware of the courses, email us and we will send you the TEA documents they need.

 

We live outside of the United States. Can my child attend a UTeach Outreach Summer STEM program? 

If your child has an appropriate visa status to enter the United States to attend the program, your child is welcome to any of our camps. UTeach Outreach is unable to issue immigration documents for participation in any of the UTeach Outreach Summer STEM programs. We do not provide housing for students attending our camps. 

 

What is the EIN for UTeach Outreach?

Our Federal Employer Identification Number is 74-6000203.

 

Do you recommend any other camps?  

If our 2019 camps are not the right fit for your kids, we recommend:

The Austin Science and Nature Center

Girlstart

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center

Texas Advanced Computing Center