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ADVANCE Promotional (4 minutes)

Program dates: July 10 - 30, 2016        The web site has been updated for 2016!

The ADVANCE Program for Young Scholars at Northwestern State in Natchitoches, Louisiana is privileged to offer the only residential program for gifted or talented youth in the state of Louisiana that is affiliated with the Duke University Talent Identification Program (Duke TIP). Northwestern State, a member of the University of Louisiana System, offers the ADVANCE Program and assumes full responsibility for the instruction, administration, and outcomes of the program.

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ADVANCE is celebrating its 28th year as a three-week residential program that offers a challenging and rewarding curriculum for gifted or talented students entering grades 8 through 12 next fall. By bringing together academically talented students, ADVANCE is able to offer a unique educational experience, one geared to both the student's high abilities and to their need for peers who share their academic abilities and their love for learning.

Students enroll in one course for three weeks of intense and demanding study. Classes are conducted for 6 hours Monday through Friday, 3.5 hours on Saturday, and the courses require attendance at a one-hour guided study Monday through Friday evenings. Students receive 106 contact hours to cover an entire year's worth of high school material or a semester of college level material.

Courses have approximately 15 students and are taught by a diverse and talented group of highly qualified Instructor-Teaching Assistant (TA) teams. These teaching teams are committed to challenging their students and to providing an exceptional educational experience. The classrooms and laboratories utilized are located on the Northwestern State campus or on the campus of the Louisiana School for Math, Science, and the Arts (LSMSA).

The residential life portion of ADVANCE is vital to the program, offering balanced recreational and social activities to complement the intensive academic curriculum. ADVANCE has built up a host of traditions and a strong community of staff and students that keep ADVANCErs returning year after year. In short, the ADVANCE Program provides everything gifted or talented students could want in a summer experience: an intellectually challenging curriculum that stretches their academic capabilities; the chance to live and interact with peers of similar abilities and interests; and the opportunity to just have fun with other kids during summer break.

ADVANCErs consistently state that program participation changes their lives in many positive ways and that friendships made while at ADVANCE are long-lasting and important. Additionally, students refer to ADVANCE as their second home and their peers as extended family. In order to achieve the complete ADVANCE experience, students should plan to engage fully in both academic and residential activities.

While participation in ADVANCE fosters intellectual, social, and emotional growth, it is important to recognize that genuine academic motivation is the true heart of the program. Students unable to make academics their first priority or those primarily interested in a "summer camp experience" should refrain from applying to ADVANCE. However, truly motivated students will enjoy a community of peers unlike any they have ever experienced.