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Northwestern University

Bio&ChemEXCEL Program

Bio&ChemEXCEL is an intensive, five-week summer program for incoming first-year students to the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences. Only those who have been admitted to Northwestern University as a Weinberg College student may participate in the program. Started in 2011, the program provides academic preparation, leadership training, and a community of students, staff, and faculty to support students throughout their time at Northwestern University. In particular, we are looking for students who:

  1. Are planning on taking coursework in biology, neuroscience, chemistry, or other biomedical sciences
  2. Are among the first in their family to attend college, or who didn't take many AP/IB courses in high school
  3. Have great potential for leadership on campus and in their career


The 2024 summer program will run on the Evanston campus from Saturday, June 22 to Saturday, July 27. Students must be able to commit to the full program dates - late arrivals and early departures cannot be accommodated because you will miss class time.

What will I do in Bio&ChemEXCEL?

You will take 4 courses (calculus, chemistry, biological research, and leadership) every day for four weeks and will receive 2 elective credits with letter grades on your transcript (Biol Sci 100-0 and Chem 100-0). While these courses do not replace the introductory courses taken in the first year, they are designed to prepare you for the typical course load of a pre-med or science major at Northwestern University. 

You will live on-campus along with your classmates and a team of undergraduate counselors. The counselors are former program participants who will offer academic support, lead community building events, and give you honest, meaningful advice on how to succeed at Northwestern University. In this program, you will get to know more about the true college experience, your classmates, and yourself.

Check out the profiles for this summer's counselor team!
Angie, Hanna, Kelsey, Sarah O, and Sarah S.

MORE Benefits

  1. There is no charge for tuition or housing - the program is free!
  2. We will arrange and pay for airfare/train tickets for students who live more than a 3-hour drive (about 150 miles) from campus. Sorry, we cannot make arrangements for international travel.
  3. Bio&ChemEXCEL students will get preferred admission into NU Bioscientist, our first-year research preparatory program, as well as the Arch Scholars Peer Mentoring program during their first year.

How do I apply?

We are no longer accepting applications for the summer of 2024. Please contact the Associate Director, Dr. Luke Flores, if you have any questions at


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