Summer@IMSA Program Information - Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

Summer@IMSA Program Information


All of IMSA’s programs are directed by IMSA staff. IMSA teachers, program coordinators, and curriculum specialists have bachelors, masters, and even doctorate degrees in education, biology, museum education, chemistry, mathematics, and engineering,  just to name a few— and these diverse backgrounds help us create outstanding experiences for our campers. Many of our day programs in Aurora are taught by members of IMSA’s Allies or SITE programs. IMSA Allies are IMSA students who have gone through our year-long leadership development program that includes skill development. SITE (Summer Internships for Tomorrow’s Educators) are exemplary college or graduate students interested in pursuing a career in STEM education, who go through three weeks of training prior to the start of summer programs. IMSA Allies also serve as group leaders (counselors) in each of our programs. All adult summer staff are CPR and Red Cross First Aid certified.

Requests to Pair Students

For Aurora programs, there is typically more than 1 section for each program. IMSA will do its best to honor one friend-request to pair two students in the same program section. PLEASE NOTE ONLY ONE MUTUAL FRIEND REQUEST TO BE PLACED IN THE SAME SECTION — THE FIRST ONE WE RECEIVE–WILL BE HONORED. NO EXCEPTIONS. WE WILL NOT HONOR REQUESTS TO PUT GROUPS OF 3 OR MORE STUDENTS TOGETHER. Participants must request each other for the request to be fulfilled. Requested parties must be registered for the same program (i.e. a participant in the 3-4 program cannot be grouped with a participant in the 5-6 program).  The form must be completed again for multiple events/registrations. The form is due 2 weeks before the program starts. We cannot accommodate requests made after this date. Please note we reserve the right to separate friends if their pairing results in disruptive behavior. This form can be filled out online by logging in to your account after completing registration. This information will also be communicated in the confirmation email you will receive right after you register.


Participants must bring their lunch for all program locations. Refrigerated facilities are not provided. An insulated lunch box with an ice pack is recommended.


Students must wear closed-toed shoes that fully enclose the foot (sneakers, boots, etc.) for safety in a lab environment. Students should be able to tie back long hair.  Please wear comfortable clothes that are appropriate for the weather – we do go outside! You may also want to bring a sweater or light jacket as the AC is stronger in some areas of the building.


All materials and equipment are all provided. You will receive a pre-program email with more specifics.

Phone and Device Policy

Phones are not allowed out during the program day except at lunch (for all students). Camp staff may confiscate phones if they are being used inappropriately.

Lost & Found

If you think an item of yours was left behind at camp, ask your camper’s group leader or check the lost & found box. Please do not wait until the last day to start your search as all unclaimed items will be donated or disposed of promptly after the final day of camp. We are not responsible for personal items left or lost at camp!

Late Pick-up Fee

We understand that unforeseen challenges may cause you to be late for the designated pick-up. Please realize this causes complications in the smooth running of camp. Camp ends at 3:00 p.m. every day. IMSA provides a 15-minute grace period after which our mandatory late pick up fee begins. Any parent/guardian picking up a child late will be assessed a mandatory fee of $15 for any pickup 15 minutes late and $5 per 5-minute increment thereafter (i.e. 15-19 min late = $15, 20-24 min late = $20, etc.) Late fees are due on the child’s next day of camp, and can be paid by check made out to IMSA, or cash.


State government policy prohibits discrimination based on race, sex, color, creed, religion, national origin, age and ancestry, sexual orientation, political affiliation or disability. We will make reasonable accommodations for disabilities in accordance with law. Summer@IMSA programs are designed for independent learners who work well with others. IMSA will provide reasonable accommodations so activities can be adapted to individual needs and abilities. Please call us to discuss your child’s needs.

Camper Expectations

Summer@IMSA encourages the highest standards of conduct, civility, and a sense of fair play as is consistent with the student standards of behavior at IMSA. Students enrolled in Summer@IMSA are expected to be polite to their fellow campers, counselors, and other camp or school personnel, to follow all safety rules, and to respect the property of others and the school. Campers are not to leave the building on their own, and they are expected to be with their assigned camp groups at all times. Summer@IMSA reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to deny any camper the opportunity to participate in camp if the student’s conduct or behavior is deemed unsatisfactory by the camp administration.

Pre-Program Email

Approximately a week before the start of each program we will send you an email with detailed information specific to your program. Please read this email carefully as it will contain information about pick-up and drop-off procedures, and other important details that may change from week to week.

Registration and Payment Policies

Early registration is advised. Because each program has limited capacity, registration is on a first-come, first-served basis. Program registrants who register by February 28, 2019, will receive an early registration discount of 12%. This discount will be applied automatically when you check out.

50% of the program tuition is due at the time of registration, and includes your non-refundable $50 registration fee.

Registration remains open until two weeks before a program begins, or when it fills. If programs fill, there will be a waiting list that you will be placed on in chronological order when you attempt to register. If spots open we will contact whomever is next on the list.


  • No camper/student will be allowed to participate in Summer@IMSA who has any tuition outstanding.
  • No refunds will be made to a camper/student who, for disciplinary reasons, are asked to leave Summer@IMSA
  • In case of a camper’s/student’s withdrawal from a program, the Summer@IMSA office must be notified in writing via email before May 1 or full payment will still be due.
  • Refunds and credits will not be issued for any partial or missed days
  • IMSA reserves the right to cancel a program if unforeseen circumstances occur. Notification of cancellation of a program will be done as early as possible and a refund (or pro-rated refunds if a program has started) will be issued.

Registration Tips

IMSA uses the online ACTIVE platform for its program registrations, program applications, and scholarship applications. We suggest you check your ACTIVE login credentials in advance of registration opening.

Scholarship Information

IMSA provides a limited amount of financial-need–based scholarships for its summer programs. Applicants must demonstrate financial need by submitting proof of eligibility in the SNAP program or the Free or Reduced Lunch Program or by submitting the first page (showing your family’s gross income and dependents) of your 2018 or 2019 state or federal income tax return.

Scholarships for all programs will be offered on a rolling basis, so it is to your benefit to complete your scholarship application (and documents showing your financial need) as early as possible. All scholarship recipients will be responsible for a $30 administrative fee, no matter what amount of aid they receive. No scholarship applications or supporting documents will be accepted after April 1 for Aurora programs, or May 1 for regional programs. If you are offered a scholarship, you will need to accept by the date contained in your scholarship offer email (typically one week after email date). Please check your SPAM filter settings to ensure emails from “” are not being routed to Junk, Spam or Trash folders, as the scholarship “acceptance by” date is firm.

Applying for a financial-need-based scholarship does not guarantee an award or registration into the summer program. Priority will be given to qualified applicants who have not received a summer scholarship before. You may choose to either pay for program registration OR apply for a scholarship and await award notification.  If you register your child and apply for a scholarship for the same program, your scholarship application will not be reviewed.

Metro East Scholarships

Scholarship support for our Metro East summer programs has been generously provided by the Scott Air Force Base STEM Advisory Group. In addition to their essay and teacher recommendation, scholarship applicants are rated on the following criteria, listed in order of importance: 1) immediate family military affiliation, 2) financial need, 3) county of residence.

Refund Policy

Due to the current public health crisis, we are amending our summer program refund policy to provide a full refund (less the $50 non-refundable registration fee) to anyone who requests a cancellation through April 15. Refund requests must be made in writing  by sending an email to Please include the name and dates of the program and the participant’s name.

.Any cancellations after April 15 and through May 1 will receive a refund of 50% of the tuition. No refunds whatsoever will be granted after May 1. Requests for tuition refunds (less the $50 non-refundable registration fee) must be made in writing by sending an email to Please include the name and dates of the program and the participant’s name.