Summerfuel Summer Programs: Study Abroad Programs for High School Students


Embrace the language, culture and cuisine in the heart of the French Riviera.

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July 1* - July 26, 2015
*Escorted flight departs NY on June 30
Program Fee:
$8,295 + airfare
Completing grades 9-12
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Summerfuel in Nice?

Since 1996, Summerfuel has offered high school students the unique opportunity to go beyond the classroom to experience France in its real-life context. The city of Nice—situated in the center of France’s fabulous Mediterranean coastline, the Côte d’Azur—is the site of Summerfuel’s French language program. Famous the world over as a cosmopolitan center of art, culture, cuisine and exclusive summer resorts, Nice is the perfect setting for this unique learning experience.

The program stresses experiential learning, classroom instruction, and cultural enlightenment. During your time in Nice, you will discover many unique opportunities to combine classroom study of the French language with experiences of day-to-day life in France, and enriching cultural immersion. Summerfuel in Nice is a rewarding program for teenagers that encourages exploration, develops independence, and provides a foundation for academic success and personal discovery.

Program Schedule

  • June 30 • Group Flight Departs NY
  • July 01 • Welcome to Nice!
  • July 02 • First Day of Classes
  • July 05 • St. Paul
  • July 06 • Rafting on the Var River
  • July 12 • Antibes & Cannes
  • July 13 • Porquerolles Island
  • July 19 • St. Tropez
  • July 20 • Monaco & Eze
  • July 25 • Final Dinner & Dance
  • July 26 • Depart Nice

French Language Study

Perfect your French language skills under the guidance of professors from the University of Nice in a dynamic learning environment. Enhance your knowledge of grammar, syntax, and vocabulary, and improve your listening and speaking skills.

Cultural Electives

Immerse yourself in French culture with one of our six afternoon elective courses: Art History, Digital Photography, Fashion Design, French Cinema, International Relations and Studio Art.

Nice Adventures

Summerfuel’s daily activities are designed to ensure you make the most of your time in Nice. Outdoor activities such as swimming, parasailing, paddle-boarding and beach volleyball are complemented by cultural trips, including the Chagall Museum, Matisse Museum and the Nice Jazz Festival.

Exploring the Riviera

Each Saturday and Sunday, Summerfuel offers unforgettable excursions that allow students to experience the Côte d’Azur in all its diversity, from quaint medieval villages like Eze and St. Paul, to bustling resort towns, such as Cannes, Monaco and St. Tropez.


This experience has changed me for the better. I have learned to be more independent, and how to not be afraid to speak up."

Nikki K., Greenwich, CT

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Student Life

Every day in Nice is a combination of learning, exploration and fun

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Professors from the University of Nice instruct French language courses

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So many choices, such little time!

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Students master the art of French cooking with the help of chef Jean Montagard

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Elective courses expand students’ knowledge of French arts and culture

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From Niçois dinners to barbeques, Summerfuel offers a range of dining options

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The evenings are reserved for outdoor concerts, food tastings, French films and more

Your Summer Home

Your summer home is the prestigious Lycée Masséna, located just steps from Nice’s lovely Vieille Ville, the imposing Place Masséna, and of course, beautiful beaches.


Every student will have a private bedroom at Lycée Masséna. Students’ rooms are cleaned daily, and sheets and towels are changed on a regular basis. Your Resident Advisor (RA) will live on your hall to create a community, provide support, plan activities and help you get the most out of your stay in Nice.


A dedicated team of porters staff the gated entrance to the Lycée to monitor the entrance, sign in visitors, assist with lost keys and answer questions. Masséna is a gated community that is solely occupied by Summerfuel staff and students for the duration of the program.


The Lycée Masséna is renowned for its historic and imposing campus, its stunning architecture with many mosaics, and the clock tower, a school symbol inscribed with the motto “Horas ne numerem nisi serenas” (I want to count only the happy hours). Students have full and exclusive access to the school and its facilities for the duration of the program.


All meals are served in the Lycée’s on-site dining hall during the week, and on weekends the group dines out together on excursions. Students are provided with three meals a day.


Nice offers students endless opportunities for cultural engagement and entertainment, just a short walk from our residence.

Promenade des Anglais

Nice’s famous seaside boulevard is the perfect place for a scenic stroll and first-class people-watching.

Vieille Ville

Complete with winding cobblestone streets, charming cafés and bustling squares, the old town is the center of activity for Summerfuel in Nice.

Place Masséna

The heart of Nice’s new town, this recently renovated square boasts a stunning 19th century fountain and cutting-edge art installations.

Rue de France

This pedestrian zone is lined with countless boutiques and restaurants, and is home to an impressive array of street performers during the summer months.

Cours Saleya

The Vieille Ville’s open-air market features fruits, vegetables and flowers on a daily basis, and antiques and ephemera once a week.

Opera Plage

This beach is the perfect place to bask in the Mediterranean sun and engage in a range of sports, including volleyball, parasailing, sea-kayaking and snorkeling.

Nice Jazz Festival

This world-famous music festival attracts top talent, from jazz greats like B.B. King and Herbie Hancock, to rap and hip-hop stars like Kanye West and John Legend.

Matisse Museum

Situated amidst the Roman ruins of Cimiez, this museum boasts an excellent collection of Matisse’s drawings, paintings, collages and sculptures.

Chagall Museum

The artist himself was integral to the planning and design of this unique museum, including a scenic garden, stained glass windows, and a classic Chagall mosaic.


The centerpiece of Nice’s Promenade des Arts, this museum features seminal works by Niki de Saint Phalle, Ellsworth Kelly, Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein.

Le Chateau

The ruins of this 12th century chateau sit high on a hill overlooking the Mediterranean, making it an ideal spot for an afternoon hike.

The Negresco

This hotel is a stunning example of Belle époque architecture and is the perfect location for attending a formal afternoon tea.


Students heading off to morning class at the Lycée Masséna

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A lively class discussion about the latest news

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Fashion Design students perfect their figure drawing

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Students in French Cooking prepare a tarte aux fruits

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Students enjoying studio art out on the town

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The city of Nice is a wonderful classroom!

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Looking for deals at the local market

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Practicing negotiating skills in French

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Academic Director Michel Remy shares his enthusiasm for Surrealism

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Relaxing during a break from class

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Students in the scuba diving workshop take a breather

The academic program is composed of a three-hour French language course each weekday morning and a ninety-minute cultural elective course four afternoons a week. Upon arrival in Nice, students complete a comprehensive French language placement test and are placed into several levels. No previous knowledge of French is required to attend Summerfuel in Nice.

French language classes are taught by native professors from the University of Nice Faculté des Lettres, and the curriculum combines classroom instruction, experiential learning and daily practice to develop proficiency for all levels of French. Afternoon cultural electives complement the morning language classes to offer a deeper insight into French culture. All students receive a Summerfuel transcript upon completing the program.

In addition to the morning and afternoon courses, Summerfuel offers optional workshops, which meet once or twice a week in the late afternoon. These workshops are available on a first-come, first-served basis, and carry a supplemental fee.


Academically, my French has improved tremendously. My success in French this year reflects that so much. Also after one month in France, my accent has improved more than from years of French in America."

David N., Beverly Hills, CA


French Language Study

This class is taught at various levels of ability, ranging from absolute beginner to advanced French. The class integrates classroom lectures, audio materials, video presentations, workbook exercises, and a variety of texts from the French press to develop fluency in all aspects of the French language. Classes meet three hours each day, five days a week, for a total of eighteen days (fifty-one classroom hours plus three hours of placement testing). Classroom time is divided into the following areas: practical grammar, written comprehension and expression, vocabulary and conversation.


Art History

The objective of this course is to provide students with the tools to understand and evaluate art across a variety of mediums. In this largely field-based course, Professor Michel Remy offers guided visits to local art institutions, including the Chagall Museum, the Matisse Museum, and the MAMAC, to illustrate the history of art from Impressionism through Surrealism.

Digital Photography

Nice provides an ideal setting for students to pursue their passion for photography and apply their own artistic touch in the digital darkroom. This course covers the fundamentals of compositions, use of manual features on a DLSR camera, and use of photo editing software to conceive and create images with beauty, purpose, intent and meaning.

Fashion Design

France and fashion make for a formidable pairing. In this course, students learn the essentials of sketching, figure drawing, creating an inspiration board, conceiving a collection and assembling a fashion portfolio. Students also visit local fashion boutiques and learn about the business side of the fashion industry from local professionals working in the field.

International Relations

In this course, students study current events relating to war and terrorism, diplomacy, refugee status, human rights, and aid for the developing world in order to think critically about the arguments made in international politics. Readings and class discussions are augmented by guest speakers who share their knowledge of global affairs and international politics.

Studio Art

Designed for students of every level, this course focuses on the essential techniques of sketching and painting and takes advantage of the many picturesque neighborhoods in Nice and the natural beauty of the French Riviera. Under the guidance of artist Christophe Girard, students strive to master the art of figure drawing, still life, portraits and abstractions.

French Cinema

France is home to a rich and complex cinematic tradition. In this course, students study the history of this celebrated art form, from the first half of the 20th century until today. Students develop an appreciation for French film not only as a form of entertainment, but also as a platform for social commentary, political dissent and aesthetic invention. For students with at least 2 years of high school French.


French Cooking

For centuries chefs have flocked to France to master the art of French cooking. In this weekly workshop, students will gain hands-on experience in a professional kitchen under the guidance of internationally recognized chef Jean Montegard. From croissants to crèmes brûlées, this course will introduce students to the delicious and daring world of French cooking. ($100 supplement)

Scuba Diving

Nice’s Baie des Anges is the perfect place to learn the basics of scuba diving under the guidance of professional instructors at the Poseidon Dive Center. This workshop will include three diving sessions. ($200 supplement)

Activities 01

Up, up, up and away!

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Basking in the sun during a visit to Monaco

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A bit of healthy competition is good for the soul

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Exploring the magical mountains overlooking the Mediterranean

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Escargots...not for everyone!

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Taking a swim on the magical Porquerolles Island

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Enjoying a boat tour of celebrity homes near St. Tropez

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Enjoying some downtime with new friends.

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Rafting down the mighty Var river

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Cooling off during a visit to St. Paul de Vence

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Students perfect their jumps in Villefranche

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Ice-cream is an integral part of the French diet.

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Going for gold in the Summerfuel Olympics

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Loving life on la Cote d’Azur with new friends

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Getting ready for another plunge from atop the rocks!

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The chicken got to the Mediterranean by crossing la Promenade des Anglais

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Hats off to our favorite Venezuelans!

Included Trips

Each weekend you will travel to fantastic, historic sites to make sure you see the best the Riviera has to offer.

St. Paul

Enjoy a private viewing of Matisse’s final work, La Chapelle du Rosaire, and explore the cobblestone streets and countless galleries in the medieval town of St. Paul de Vence.

White Water Rafting

Get back to nature with a day spent rafting on the scenic Var River in the foothills of the Alps.

Antibes & Cannes

Tour the lovely Musée Picasso and search for treasures at Antibes’s outdoor market, then experience the glamour of Cannes, including the famous Palais des Festivals.


Hike and bike your way around this ruggedly beautiful island off the coast of the French Riviera, and enjoy pristine white sand beaches.

St. Tropez

Take a boat tour of the stunning coastline off St. Tropez, and prepare for celebrity sightings in this beloved town.

Eze & Monaco

Visit the famous Fraggonard perfume factory or the lush botanic garden in Eze, then cross the border for a day in the glitzy principality of Monaco.

Daily Activities

Summerfuel offers a wide range of activities each and every day on campus and around Nice.

Past favorites include

  • Parasailing
  • Volleyball
  • Sea Kayaking
  • Tubing
  • Paddle Boarding
  • Food Tastings
  • Films
  • Concerts
  • Bastille Day Celebration
  • Soccer
  • Basketball
  • Biking
  • Rollerblading
  • Summerfuel Olympics
  • Karaoke
  • Bowling
  • Billiards
  • Fashion Show

Senior Staff

Senior staff

At Summerfuel we are particularly proud of our superlative program directors, staff and faculty. We believe that strong, nurturing and experienced leadership sets the tone for a successful program.

The senior staff consists of a Program Director, Residential Director, Activities Director and Academic Director. The Academic Director, Michel Remy, has been with Summerfuel in Nice since its inception in 1996.

Resident Advisors


RAs are an essential part of the Summerfuel experience and are hired to support and act as role models to our students.

RAs are college upperclassmen or recent graduates with experience in residential life. They live on each floor, with one RA for every ten students. RAs will always be available to organize activities, provide tours around Nice, answer questions and make sure our students get the most out of their summer.

Safety and Supervision

Safety & Supervision

The safety, security, and overall well-being of our students is paramount. We implement the following measures to ensure our students are well cared for and safe at all times.

  • No more than 1:10 residential staff to student ratio
  • Team of porters on staff at Lycée Massena
  • Gated campus, only open to Summerfuel students and staff
  • Designated zone in which students can travel
  • Buddy system to ensure students never travel alone
  • 11pm daily curfew
  • Zero tolerance for drug or alcohol use