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Summer 2017 Human++

NuVu is a place where young students grow their spirit of innovation. They use their curiosity and creativity to explore new ideas, and make their concepts come to life through our design process. Our model is based on the architecture studio model, and every Summer we use imaginative themes to frame two-week long Studios in which students dive into hands-on design, engineering, science, technology, art and more!



Summer 2017 Residential Program

The Summer 2017 Residential Program at NuVu offers a unique summer opportunity for a selective group of motivated and talented high school students. Experience innovative and challenging college-level studios at NuVu Studio in the heart of Cambridge! Whether students are from the US or hail from halfway around the world, we welcome them to explore what the Summer Residential Program at NuVu has to offer. Our program is designed to provide exceptional students the opportunity to explore our creative process before applying to college. Located between two world-renowned elite universities, Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, NuVu provides high school students the opportunity to take advantage of the vast array of activities and resources available to the Boston community.

The Summer Residential Program is only available in Session 1 of the Summer Program (July 9-22, 2017) to students between the ages of 14-18 who are also participating in NuVu’s Summer Day Program. Tuition for the Summer Residential Program covers the cost of room and board at a conveniently located and 4-star hotel in Cambridge. The hotel will be within walking or shuttle distance to NuVu and most of the Cambridge and Boston area. Tuition also covers the cost of well-curated and designed activities that will expose the students to a variety of college campuses, cutting-edge start-ups and tech centers, and other resources in the design and technology space that can only be found in and around the Cambridge/Boston area. As part of the Summer Residential Program, students will have the support of a full administrative and residential staff that are available and on hand throughout the program.

As part of the Summer Residential Program, students will be exposed to the rich academic, historic, professional, and entrepreneurial culture that makes the Cambridge/Boston area so innovative and unique. The greater Boston area includes more than 100 colleges and universities. These include technical schools, art schools, liberal arts schools, major research institutions and many more. For students preparing for college or even thinking about possible options, this will be a great opportunity to explore the many educational institutes in the area. This year’s Summer Residential Program includes tours of the MIT and Harvard campuses, visits to emerging startup companies, lectures with thought-leaders and makers, excursions to the historic sites of Boston, visits to some of the top museums in Boston (Museum of Science, MFA, MIT Museum), hikes along the Boston waterfront and Innovation District, and dinner excursions!

Theme & Topics

In Summer 2017, we’ll be traveling a few years into the future and exploring a world in which humans and machines have combined forces to solve humanity’s biggest problems! And we aren’t just talking about everyday drones and self driving cars. This Summer, we’ll be exploring complex and exciting new interfaces between humans and machines in which machines are used in creative ways in every aspect of our life, i.e. graffiti drones, brain-controlled toys, bio-fashion, even VR therapy devices for patients in hospitals.

For the last few decades, the rise of machines and machine intelligence has changed the role of humans, enhanced how we connect with one another, and grown our ability to predict the future. Computer systems and applications, designed by humans, are now able to process and analyze large amounts of data, learn new behaviors, adapt to changing conditions, and improve their decision making process with each instance.

In this age of advanced machine intelligence, how can we harness this power to our advantage? What does a future look like where humans and machines are working together to optimize outcomes? How will we shape our cities, our lives, and our learning based on artificial intelligence? How will humans and robots work hand-in-hand to enable new capacities? Whether it’s aerial drones working with ground drones to monitor and project crop harvests for farmers, or automating medical images for radiation therapy, or using human brainwaves to control robotic prosthetics, there’s a lot to explore in this human-machine world. This Summer 2017, our theme is “Human++” and we’ll be exploring how to harness the combined intelligence of humans and machines to solve big problems!

Sessions & Studio Offerings

The Summer 2017 Residential Program at NuVu will only take place during Session 1. This Session will have six unique studios (e.g., Cyborg Athletes, Biofashion, Machine Art) offered to students. Students can only register for one Studio per Session. Two Studios in this Session are marked “ADVANCED”; these Studios are intended for high school students, post-high school gap year students, and/or returning NuVu students.  ADVANCED studios will take place at MIT.  Learn more about our Advanced studios at this link.  Non-ADVANCED studios are appropriate for all levels of ability, and high school/experienced students are also encouraged to attend.

Session 1: July 9-22, 2017

The Residential Program is open to students ages 14-18 or grades 9-12. Two Studios in each Session are marked “ADVANCED”; these Studios are intended for high school students, post-high school gap year students, and/or returning NuVu students. ADVANCED studios will take place at MIT.   Learn more about our Advanced studios at this link.  Non-ADVANCED studios are appropriate for all levels of ability, and high school/experienced students are also encouraged to attend.



NuVu was formed in March 2010 in partnership with PhD and graduate students from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The NuVu Team is a group of creative-minded people who believe in the power of innovative education for the future. More information about the core team can be found on the NuVu Team Page.

The Summer 2017 Residential Program staff includes a Summer Coordinator and Residential Director as well as a team of Resident Assistants (RAs). Throughout the Residential Program, students will have the support of a full administrative team and assigned residential staff as well as around-the-clock supervision. The ratio of RAs to students is 1:10.

Residential Tuition

Cost of 1 Session (2 Weeks)

The table below provides the tuition and rates for the Summer 2017 Residential Program for a 2-week Session.

Group Discounts

If you are an overseas organization interested in our Summer Residential Program, we do offer discounts for groups larger than 5+ students. Please email us at summer@nuvustudio.org with your inquiries.




A deposit of $200 per Session must accompany each registration, and can be paid online through NuVu’s website. Deposits are credited to the student’s final balance. Deposits are refundable only until March 1st, 2017, after which they become non-refundable. Credit cards are accepted for online deposits only.  

Information on NuVu’s refund policy is below. If you have any questions, please contact us at summer@nuvustudio.org.

Additional Required Charges

Health Insurance

All participants are required to have coverage from a U.S. based accident and health insurance provider. Short term health insurance is offered by many U.S. companies such as USI Affinity Travel Services. Short term health insurance is necessary to pay for any medical attention you might need. Please remember that, while “Travel Insurance” may assist a student with travel costs in the event of an emergency, many policies do not cover medical bills. International participants and others without this coverage will be billed for a short term accident/health policy.

Payment Information

Credit cards are accepted for online deposits only, not for final payment. Final payments must be made by check, domestic wire, or international cable. Checks must be drawn on U.S. Banks in U.S. funds. We will not accept checks drawn on a foreign bank. Please contact our Admission Office (summer@nuvustudio.org.) for information about making a payment via wire transfer.

Please make checks payable to NuVu. Include the name of the student and studio they are participating in on the check (e.g. Jane Smith, Biofashion). Mail the check to:

NuVu Studio
450 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139

Payment Deadlines

Final payments must be received in full by May 15, 2017 for all students. Students applying after the final balance due date of May 15, 2017 must pay the entire bill immediately after acceptance via bank transfer.  In the event that space is not available in the program, families will be notified in writing that the student has been placed on a waitlist and NuVu will hold the deposit. If space does not become available for the student, or if the family wishes to be removed from the waitlist, NuVu will return the deposit in full. Any returned checks will result in a charge of $20.

Payment Plan

Families interested in setting up a payment plan for their final balance should contact Karen Sutton, Director of Operations for details at 617-945-7716. Payment plans must be set up by March 15, 2017. Please be aware that final payment under any payment plan must be received by May 15, 2017.

Financial Aid

We provide limited financial aid for our Summer Residential Program on a need basis. If you are interested in receiving more information about financial aid for our Summer Residential Program, please contact us at summer@nuvustudio.org with “Summer Residential Program Financial Aid” in the main subject line.

Refund Policy

Deposits are refundable until March 1, 2017. After that date, deposits are non-refundable. Between May 15, 2017 and the program's start date, a full or partial refund of tuition (minus the deposit) will be considered only if the student can be replaced.

Housing & Meals

Participants in NuVu’s Summer Residential Program will live in a 4-star and conveniently located hotel in Cambridge located near MIT’s campus along the scenic Charles River. Students will share a double occupancy room with another high school student enrolled in the Summer Residential Program. Students will have the support of a full administrative and residential staff with Residential Assistants (RAs) assigned to groups of approximately 8 to 10 students, with 24 hour supervision.

Program Locations:
Non-Advanced Studios will take place at:
NuVu The Innovation School
450 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA

Advanced Studios will take place at:
NuVu @MIT Design Studios
MIT's Campus, in Building 7, 77 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge.

Location of Residential Housing:
Residence Inn Boston - Cambridge
120 Broadway
Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA


Breakfast, lunch and dinner meals, included in the Day + Residential Program fee, will be served buffet-style or will take place in the city as part of organized trips and dinner excursions. If there are any specific dietary restrictions for any student taking part in the program, please include these details on the Health Form provided to registered students.


The following forms are required to secure program enrollment:

  • NuVu Student Application Form
  • NuVu Studio Health Form
  • NuVu Studio Release & Policy Form
  • NuVu Studio Waiver of Liability Form

Weekday & Weekend Schedules

Below are outlines of typical weekday and weekend schedules during the Summer Residential Program.

Weekday Schedule: Residential Program

07:00am-08:30am       Wake-Up and Breakfast
08:30am-09:00am       Check-in and Commute to NuVu (shuttle service provided)
09:00am-11:45am       Day Program Studio Curriculum (see below)
11:45am-12:45pm       Lunch
12:45pm-03:00pm       Day Program Studio Curriculum (see below)
03:00pm-04:00pm       Optional Work Time / Return to Hotel
04:00pm-06:00pm       Relaxation & Personal Time
06:00pm-06:15pm       Early Evening Check-in
06:00pm-09:00pm       Dinner / Evening Activity / Excursion
09:00pm-09:30pm       Final Check-in
09:30pm-07:00am       Room Curfew

Weekday Schedule: Day Program

NuVu’s pedagogy is informed by the architectural design Studio where a coach guides students in hands-on problem-solving to solve complex, comprehensive problems. The Studio model uses exercises to build skills and integrates students’ knowledge in a final project. Within each multidisciplinary Studio, students explore problems rigorously by focusing on one project for two weeks. A Studio Coach mentors students to develop their project through an iterative process over the course of the Studio. Students confront the small and large contexts within problems as they are exposed to complex, ‘messy’ situations. The NuVu Team continuously evaluates students through desk crits and final reviews.

To learn more about NuVu’s Studio model, please visit our About Page at https://cambridge.nuvustudio.com/studios/about#tab-studio-model.

Sample of Daily Weekday Studio Curriculum

Day 1 - Monday

  • Welcome with NuVu Team/Coach Introductions and Studio Schedule
  • Safety Tour of Machine Shop
  • Inspirational Projects
  • Problem Brief Introduced
  • Begin Introductory Design Exercise

Day 2 - Tuesday

  • Finish Introductory Design Exercise
  • Brainstorming Project Ideas
  • Team Building

Day 3 - Wednesday

  • Research & Develop Project Ideas
  • Team Design Phase
  • Begin Prototyping
  • Software/Technology Introduction

Day 4 - Thursday

  • Team Design Phase
  • Prototyping & Iterating
  • Advanced Software/Technology Tutorial
  • Desk-crits with Coaches & Experts

Day 5 - Friday

  • Team Design Phase
  • Prototyping & Iterating
  • Desk-Crits with Coaches & Experts
  • Mid-Review with Coaches & Experts

Day 6 - Monday

  • Team Design Phase
  • Prototyping & Iterating (students rebuild, redesign, refine their projects)
  • Desk-Crits with Coaches & Experts

Day 7 - Tuesday

  • Team Design Phase
  • Prototyping & Iterating (students rebuild, redesign, refine their projects)
  • Desk-Crits with Coaches & Experts

Day 8 - Wednesday

  • Team Design Phase
  • Prototyping & Iterating (students rebuild, redesign, refine their projects)
  • Finalize Design Solution
  • Desk-Crits with Coaches & Experts

Day 9 - Thursday

  • Team Design Phase
  • Final Prototyping
  • Desk-Crits with Coaches & Experts
  • Presentation Preparation

Day 10 - Friday

  • Final Presentation
  • Review/Critique
  • Wrap-up & Reflection

Note: Students will be at NuVu Studio every weekday no later than 8:55am.

Weekend Schedule: Residential Program

Each weekend, students will go on various trips throughout the Cambridge-Boston area. Trip departure and return times vary, but generally leave after breakfast and return by evening time.

09:00am-11:00am       Breakfast (Optional)
11:00am-11:15am       Check-in
11:15am-06:00pm       Trip
06:00pm-06:15pm       Early Evening Check-in
06:15pm-09:30pm       Dinner / Evening Activity / Excursion
09:30pm-10:00pm       Final Check-in
10:00pm-09:00am       Room Curfew

Note: Students will also be back in the hotel by 9:30pm every evening unless a structured residential activity has been organized and is supervised by staff.

Extracurricular Activities

Each weekend and on occasional weeknights, students will go on various exciting and intellectually stimulating trips throughout the Cambridge-Boston area. Activities will be tailored to the best interests of these students. Trip departure and return times vary but generally on the weekend, students and RA’s leave after breakfast and return before dinner. Weekend/weekday activities* include:

  • Tours of the MIT and Harvard campuses
  • Tours of emerging startup companies in the Boston/Cambridge area
  • Lectures with thought-leaders and makers leading significant changes in diverse fields
  • Excursions to the historic sites in Boston (Freedom Trail, Boston Public Library, Faneuil Hall & Quincy Market)
  • Visit to the MIT Museum, Museum of Science & other museums in the area
  • Movie nights
  • Game nights
  • Walks along the Boston waterfront & Innovation District
  • Dinner excursions (Lobster dinner, possibly a New England-style lobster boil)

*These are examples of activities that may be available to Summer 2017 Residential Students and are subject to change based on availability and timing.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some frequently asked questions regarding our Residential Program. If you have any additional questions, please email us at summer@nuvustudio.org.

1. What is the cost of NuVu’s Summer 2017 Residential Program? Are there other fees?
The Summer 2017 Residential Program fee is $5,475 for one 2-week Session. The Residential Program fee includes the Summer 2017 Day Program tuition, lodging in a 4-star and conveniently located hotel, full board (3 meals a day), all evening trips, entertainment, activities, linens and bedding, transportation to/from airport, and general transportation for organized evening and weekend activities. Airfare, meals purchased outside the program, and personal shopping are not included in this cost. Families have the option to pay an additional health insurance fee if they do NOT have their own health insurance plan.

2. How do I register?
We begin accepting registrants on January 1, 2017. Students can enroll directly online and we will follow up with an application. Once completed, students can send the application with all supporting documentation to summer@nuvustudio.org and NuVu will confirm their enrollment and along details for the final payment.

3. Who is eligible to apply?
Current 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th grade students and postgraduate students.

4. If I require assistance with the application, who should I contact?
You can email summer@nuvustudio.org or you can call 617-945-7716, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm EST.

5. Is financial aid available?
There is very limited financial aid available for the Summer 2017 Residential Program. You can email summer@nuvustudio.org for more information.

6. When can I expect to hear about my admission status?
Admissions decisions will be made on a “rolling” basis. Our team will review the application and respond to your request with the admission decision within three (2) weeks of the receipt of submitting a completed application.

7. How many studios can I take?
The Summer Residential Program is limited to Session 1 (July 9-22, 2017) Studios; however, students are welcome to enroll in Session 2 and/or Session 3 Studios in the Summer 2017 Day Program on a first-come, first-serve basis.

8. Where will the Summer 2017 Day Program be taking place?
NuVu’s Summer 2017 Day Program will be taking place at our home studio located at 450 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139.

9. Where will I live?
Students will be staying at a 4-star hotel in Cambridge located near MIT’s campus along the scenic Charles River. Each student will share a double occupancy room with another high school student enrolled in the Summer Residential Program, and will be matched appropriately. Students will have the support of a full administrative and residential staff with Residential Assistants (RAs) assigned to groups of approximately 8 to 10 students.

10. Will attending NuVu’s Summer 2017 Residential Program increase my chances of being admitted to MIT and other universities?
Participating in NuVu and mentioning that you did so on your college application is likely to be viewed by admissions counselors as one indicator of academic seriousness and hands-on learning. However, it is just one indicator among many factors that are assessed in a comprehensive application review and does not guarantee an offer of admission.

11. What type of universities and colleges do NuVu Alumni attend?
Our NuVu Alumni attend a wide range of universities and colleges in the US and abroad. Below is a partial list of some of the schools that our Alumni are currently attending.

Harvard University
Stanford University
George Washington University
Carnegie Mellon
Syracuse University
University of Michigan
University of San Diego
Emory University
Wentworth Institute of Technology
New York University
Skidmore College
Loyola Marymount University
Washington University in St. Louis
Rhode Island School of Design
Boston University
Mount Holyoke College
Emerson College
Tufts University
Brandeis University
University of Rochester
Oberlin College
University of Southern California
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
University of Pennsylvania