Summerfuel 2021 >> Coming Soon

Let our Oxford summer program inspire you, with history and tradition that goes back a millennium.

June 30*- July 25, 2020
*Escorted flight departs NY on June 29
Program Fee:
$8,895 + airfare
Lady Margaret Hall College, Dormitory
14 - 17
Program Fee includes:
Tuition, room, 2 meals per day, use of select campus facilities, included excursions and daily activities, bed linens, pillow and towels, 24-hour residential care and support, staff accompanied airport transfer during specified windows.
Not Included:
Airfare/transportation to and from home city, courses and activities shown to have an extra fee, laundry, spending money, souvenirs, meals eaten away from program, airport transfers outside of specified windows, trip cancellation insurance, medical insurance, medical and dental expenses.

The Oxford University summer program has been opening the doors to the world’s most celebrated university since 1984. We allow students to experience Oxford’s traditions and history first hand. Housed at Lady Margaret Hall College, students live in the same rooms as undergraduates during the year, and have access to leading academics, university resources and facilities to truly experience life as an Oxford student. Students also receive support from a dedicated residential staff.

Students choose two seminars and enjoy a variety of activities, field-trips and visits to London and beyond. They get an authentic taste of England’s history as well as exposure to the dynamism of the present day. Our students come from all over the US and around the world to form a summer community of learning and discovery. Students also get an inside look at applying to UK universities and receive a certificate of attendance from Lady Margaret Hall.

Want more information on Oxford ?




  • JULY 18 • LONDON


Sample Daily Schedule

08.00am • BREAKFAST
04.00pm • WORKSHOPS



An Oxford Education

Select two morning seminars and an afternoon workshop. Explore a subject of interest in depth, improve critical academic skills and discover new passions. Learn from experienced Oxford professors and local experts who are the best and brightest in their fields, and harness all that Oxford has to offer to enrich the summer learning experience.

Discover Oxford

Summerfuel in Oxford offers the freedom to choose options from our jam-packed activities calendar, or spend time in town independently with your friends. No other program offers as much outside of class. Learn how to punt on the River Cherwell, attend high tea, go on a private museum visit and watch a Shakespeare performance - all in the same day.

Exploring England

Saturdays and Sundays are reserved for excursions that allow students to experience the best that England has to offer, from the beautiful countryside to exciting cities. Go beyond Oxford and visit London, Blenheim Palace, Bath, Broughton Castle…and then London again!


At Summerfuel Oxford, students live and learn at Lady Margaret Hall (LMH), one of the 39 constituent colleges that make up Oxford University. Named after Lady Margaret Beaufort, mother of Henry VII and founded in 1878, LMH has educated some of England's outstanding writers, educators and thinkers.

LMH is located alongside the University Parks and River Cherwell, which allows students to enjoy larger grounds than most Oxford colleges and escape some of the city center traffic and congestion. LMH is a short walk from the Bodleian Library, the Ashmolean and Pitt Rivers Museums and is within easy reach of the sights of central Oxford.


Watch the 2017 Student Produced Video


Living In College

You will have a single room - the same rooms used by Oxford undergraduates during the academic year. All floors are single-gender and are assigned based on age and geographic diversity. LMH "Scouts" will tidy your bedroom every other day and supply/replace provided linens and towels once a fortnight. WiFi is available throughout the dormitory, common spaces and the college grounds and is included as part of the program fee.


A Resident Advisor (RA) will live on each hall to create a community, provide support, plan activities and help students get the most out of their stay in Oxford. Summerfuel Senior Staff also live in residence and are available to help address student concerns and emergencies, day or night.

Each year, LMH and Summerfuel program staff work together to provide the best and most comprehensive residential experience available to high school students where safety, security and community come first.

Facilities & Gardens

You'll have full access to LMH's 12-acre grounds with gardens, fields for soccer, Frisbee and volleyball, tennis courts and our very own boathouse on the River Cherwell, which borders the college.

LMH also has common rooms with a foosball table, pool table, and a jukebox, as well as a computer lab for assignments and keeping in touch with friends and family. The Summerfuel Oxford program office is located on site and serves as the hub of student activity.


Breakfast and dinner are served in LMH's traditional oak-paneled dining room. The dining hall serves a wide variety of meal options to suit most dietary preferences and requirements.

Lunch is not provided on campus to encourage you to explore Oxford's many restaurants, sandwich shops, and coffeehouses or pick up a take-away meal to enjoy a picnic by the river.


A team of amiable porters staff the lodge at the gated entrance to LMH 24-hours a day to monitor the entrance, sign in visitors, assist with lost keys, answer questions, and provide first-aid response. The dormitories have secured entrances that require an electronic key pass for access to the building and a physical key for individual bedroom entry.

Students are overseen by our dedicated residential staff during the entirety of their stay, whether on campus or in the town of Oxford, and are required to use the buddy system during free time.


Oxford is a magical place, loved not just for its longstanding traditions, venerable buildings and academic reputation. It is also where the mile was first run in under four minutes, where Alice in Wonderland was first told, and where Tolkein wrote The Lord of the Rings. All the entertainment and adventure of Oxford's city center is just a short walk away, and students are free to explore. Be sure not to miss some of the city's most coveted spots.

"This Oxford I have no doubt is the finest City in the world."  - John Keats

Christ Church

Visit the beautiful cathedral and grounds of the famous college conceived in the 1520s.

Bodleian Library

This architectural gem holds a copy of every book published in the United Kingdom.

Covered Market

Explore this arcade of farmers’ stalls, small boutiques, flower shops and sandwich cafes.

Pitt-Rivers Museum

This must-see anthropology museum contains everything from shrunken heads to musical instruments.

University Parks

The perfect place to lounge, play, or watch a cricket match, the parks are just steps from the our college front door.

Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology

Britain’s oldest public museum is home to an impressive collection of art, historical objects and oddities.

The Eagle and Child

Have lunch at this famous public house owned by St. John's College, where Tolkien first discussedThe Lord of the Rings.

Radcliffe Camera

With one of the largest domes in England, this is unquestionably the most magnificent building in Oxford.


We believe learning should be experiential, engaging, inspiring and fun. Students pursue their passions and choose two morning seminars and one workshop for the duration of the Oxford summer program allowing them to go deep into the subject matter chosen. Seminars, workshops, field trips and guest lectures are designed to provide 'only in Oxford' experiences. We offer each high school student the freedom to customize a program to match interests and craft their own summer experience.

Small Classes
Summerfuel courses are modeled on the Oxford tutorial format, with an emphasis on seminar-style discussion, for a true Oxford experience. Coursework is engaging but homework is limited to ensure that students are able to make the most of their time abroad. Most seminars have no more than twelve students enrolled to ensure that each student receives individualized attention.
Whenever possible, seminar content is enhanced by the plentiful resources Oxford and London have to offer, so that England becomes your classroom. Visit Parliament while it is in session with your political science class, tour the medieval colleges in Oxford Art & Architecture, or visit a start-up business for Entrepreneurship.


Our Oxford summer workshops are designed to be a more formal version of the extracurricular programming Summerfuel staff offer daily.  Workshops meet three afternoons a week and allow for specific skill building such as Writing the College Essay or unearthing you inner thespian in The Actor's Workshop. Workshops are led by Summerfuel faculty members with expertise in and a passion for the subject.

Suggested Academic Tracks

While we encourage our Oxford summer students to explore different academic disciplines, our courses are also designed to pair into recommended tracks:

AM I Medical Science | AM II Genetics

AM I International Business | AM II Entrepreneurship

AM I Law | AM II Law and Society

AM I Developmental Psychology | AM II Psychology of the Criminal Mind

AM I Shakespeare | AM II Oxford Authors

Academic London Trip

Each year, students head into London with their faculty and classmates to enrich their Oxford-based studies. Students will participate in activities which relate to their chosen seminars and are designed to best leverage London’s assets. Past activities have included:

• Visit to Houses of Parliament
(PPE, International Relations)

• A Shakespeare production at The Globe Theatre

• Lecture at the Museum of The Bank of England
(International Business, Finance)

• A Tour of St. Paul’s Cathedral
(Oxford Art & Architecture)

The Oxford Lecture Series

Since its inception in 2002, the Summerfuel Lecture Series has provided an opportunity for students to explore and discuss a stimulating range of issues and ideas, and for our senior faculty members to showcase their research. The series takes place once a week throughout the program. The following are examples of past lectures, and possible topics for this summer:

• A History of Oxford and Britain in 25 Objects
• Philosophy: Why Bother?
• Oxford in the Movies: from Laurel & Hardy to Harry Potter
• What is Knowledge and how do we have it?


Courses at the Summerfuel Oxford summer program are taught by an accomplished and passionate teaching faculty, including Oxford University professors, practicing professionals and artists. They open many doors to our students and provide unique access. Our faculty are exclusively hired to design and teach our seminars and do not have residential responsibilities. We are delighted that many of our faculty returning year after year to continue to inspire new generations of students and introduce them to the world of Oxford.

Our returning faculty will include:

Dr. Edward Clarke
Shakespeare, Shakespeare’s England
PhD in English Literature, Trinity College, Dublin
MA in English Literature, St. Catherine’s College, Oxford
Read Dr. Clarke’s Interview

Dr. Ana Castriota

International Business, Finance
MA in Economics, Trinity College, Oxford
MBA The University of Chicago, Booth School of Business

John Rolfe
Oxford Art & Architecture
MA and PGCE in Art History, University of London
See John Rolfe talk about the course

Dr. Meg Dharod
Medical Science, Genetics
PhD in Medical Microbiology, Balliol College, Oxford
Biochemistry Researcher, John Radcliffe Hospitals, Oxford

Luke Douglas-Home
MA in Politics, Magdalen College, Oxford
Director, Clear Space

Charlie Hawkins
Law and Society
PPE, Brasenose College, Oxford
Former Partner, White and Case

Paul Sinclair
Oxford Authors
MA in Medieval History, Brasenose College, Oxford
Assistant Director, Liberal Arts, St. Clare's, Oxford

Kay Alty
Business Management, Marketing & Advertising
CESEM in European Management, Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Reims
Founder & Director, Data Print Ltd.
Read Kay's Interview

Alumni Testimonial

My summer in Oxford was truly life-changing. The classes and professors really opened my eys not just to new material but a new way of thinking in a critical way. The freedom to enjopy Oxford, its history and energy made for a perfect summer and i had tons of fun with new friends. Thank you Oxford. I will be back
-- Grace C., New York, NY

With the transition to college, my life has changed quite a bit since being at Summerfuel Oxford, but I think I can say from the perspective of two years later that the program has impacted and continues to impact my life every day. I still keep in touch with a core group of friends from that summer and see them as often as possible.

-- William A., Los Angeles, CA

Living in an academic setting away from home and being responsible for my own well-being and academic success primed me better for college than any AP class could have. Plus, Ed Clarke awakened the Shakespeare nut in me, and my giant, heavy, Complete Works of William Shakespeare is still the first book I pack to go anywhere. In brief, my summer in Oxford was one of the most profoundly influential and positively fun experiences of my life. 
-- Sienna C., Wellesley, MA

Summer PreCollege Seminars

Students choose two Morning Seminars and one Afternoon Workshop for the duration of the program. Each Morning Seminar meets for 1 1/2 hours Monday to Friday, while Afternoon Workshops meet three times per week for 2 hours. Seminars are designed to be experiential with field-trips and project-work. Click on the seminar titles below for more details.

Morning Seminar


International Business

What is global capitalism and how does it work? Examine the dynamic world of international business - supply and demand, market structure, trading, and investment - and some of the institutions that keep it in check, such as national governments, the WTO, and the IMF. With your classmates, you'll solve interesting business problems and form your own strategies for some of the world's top organizations.


Oxford Art & Architecture

Use Oxford as your classroom to discover its thousand years of architectural beauty and history. On daily trips to sites around the city, you will explore the civic, ecclesiastical, and collegiate architecture of Oxford and engage directly with some of the finest art collections in England. You'll fill a journal with sketches and photographs of all that you see to create a living memory of your summer experience.


Shakespeare can change your life. Find out how this summer by exploring The Complete Works with an expert guide. Whether you are new to the Bard or already an enthusiast this course will enliven your mind. We will read several plays, acting out scenes, and discovering Renaissance England along the way. Imagine attending performances at the Globe Theater and in the exquisite grounds of Oxford colleges. Rain or shine you will be mesmerized and finish the course a genuine Shakespearean.


Medical Science

This interdisciplinary course will introduce you to many of the fundamental concepts of medical science. Learn how the immune system functions, and sometimes malfunctions, with respect to disease, and how health care professionals and organizations work to prevent, treat, and cure illness. In addition to the scientific aspects of medicine, you will also research and discuss the social, political and cultural dimensions of the experience of health and wellness.

Biology of Disease

Disease doesn't just affect an individual. This discussion based course will cover the basic characteristics of disease and how some have dramatically affected the development of society. In addition to historic case studies, students will learn how Epidemiologists build their case through evidence-based research.

Social Sciences

Developmental Psychology

Investigate the psychological concepts that have revolutionized our understanding of others and ourselves. Examine the roots of personality and behavior as seen through the theories of Freud, Maslow, Erikson, and Piaget and evaluate the validity of these theories in light of your own experiences. You will focus on the major areas of human experience: physical maturation, intellectual and moral development, sensuality and sexuality, family and peer relationships, and coping with stress and problems in everyday life.


In this dynamic course students examine the British and American legal systems and learn how they reflect the values and institutions of their respective societies. Discussion is based on legal history and approach, landmark cases, current controversies, and the kind of first-hand courtroom observation that brings them to life. The course incorporates visits to a court and sessions with lawyers as well as a visit to the Old Bailey. (London's central criminal court)

Morning Seminar 2


Marketing & Advertising

Marketing and advertising can make or break the success of any product. Learn how the right packaging, pricing and advertising can set an idea apart from the rest. Dive into the complexities of consumer behavior to develop a winning marketing strategy to promote and sell a new product of your choosing. From advertising on the internet, to magazines, the radio and TV, there's no limit to where your creativity can take you!


Are you a self-starter who is always looking for the next big idea? Do you want to develop your leadership skills and learn how to run your own company? This practically-based course will show you how to create your own business from start to finish. Learn how to identify a market, attract investors and manage growth and expansion. Study models of both successful and unsuccessful businesses and look at the developing impact of technology. Visit local businesses to gain a greater understanding of the complexities involved in running a successful entrepreneurial venture. Then, work with a team of your peers to develop your own original business plan to promote your innovative idea.

Banking and Markets

Banking industry experts help students discover how the economy really works. From the evolution of commerce and banking from its ancient origins to the present, including the principals of investment banking and venture capital, the global economy to high speed and algorithmic trading. Explore how money itself is evolving with the emergence of cryptographic currencies like Bitcoin. Through visits to financial institutions ranging from local bank branches to the Bank of England and the trading floors in London’s Square Mile, get an inside look at how money moves and markets operate and what it takes to make a career in finance.


Oxford Authors

Experience Oxford through the writings of three famous Oxford scholars: Lewis Carroll, C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien. By enjoying a variety of excursions, you will explore the physical and intellectual landscape of Oxford and the influence it has had on these author's imaginative works. Consider the function of myth, allegory, symbolism and other literary forms and compare your own experiences and adventures in Oxford to those that take place in Alice's Wonderland, Narnia and the magic of the Hobbit's Middle-earth.

Creative Writing

Imagine. Compose. Inspire. Develop your unique voice as you focus on the main elements of writing short fiction. With works by well known writers as your model, learn to develop narrative point of view, effective description, characterization and dialogue. Make use of the rich resources of Oxford to turn your own experiences and impressions into finished works to share with others. Return home with a variety of revised pieces for a portfolio you can be proud of.



Discover recent developments on the nature and role of DNA. Learn how genetic research and advances in molecular biology are re-shaping medicine and enabling new treatments for diseases such as cancer and AIDS. You will also discuss current ethical issues in medicine such as gene therapy, genetic engineering and cloning. Prerequisite: Completion of high school biology course.

Social Sciences

Psychology of the Criminal Mind

What drives people to commit crimes? Do offenders have a failed sense of morality, or, is it a biologically hard wired, unstoppable urge? Investigate psychological phenomena such as "group think" and "de-individuation" as they relate to environmental factors like poverty, drug use and social upbringing. Explore how mental illnesses like psychopathy and antisocial personality disorder can be a source of criminal behavior and study fascinating examples of how seemingly normal individuals commit serious and violent felonies.



Actor's Workshop

Become a member of a working theatre company, led by a professional director. Stretch your imagination and develop the skills needed by all actors: movement, improvisation, characterization, voice and speech, storytelling, text interpretation, and ensemble work. Through games and exercises, you'll also learn about story telling, text interpretation and timing. At the conclusion of the course, perform for your friends and the entire Summerfuel community.

Digital Photography

Pursue your passion for photography and apply your own artistic touch in the digital darkroom. Master the fundamentals of composition through discussion of the work of well-known photographers and explore your own style taking pictures around Oxford. Learn how to use the manual features of your digital camera and Adobe Photoshop to conceive and create images with beauty, purpose, intent and meaning. Perfect your best work for display in the final ASA Art Show. You must supply your own DSLR digital camera and laptop with Adobe Photoshop. (Supplemental Fee: $75; DSLR camera and laptop required)


Sports and Fitness

Do you love to play? Enjoy a workshop with varied athletic challenges and competitions. We'll survey student interest and include various sporting activities to engage in. Likely to include punting, tennis, soccer, cricket, running and use of the nearby Oxford Parks.

Preparing for College

Essay Writing

Effective writing is perhaps the most important skill for success in high school and college. This workshop will further develop key writing and critical thinking skills that are applicable to any area of study. Together we will work through the steps common to all successful college writing: defining an audience, developing a substantive thesis statement, argumentation, organization, style, drafting, and revision. Structured writing exercises and reading assignments are followed by group workshops and student-teacher conferences as students work to complete final essay(s).

Public Speaking

This active workshop will provide a dynamic introduction to successful public speaking. Learn the principles of oration from political speakers ranging from Cicero to Martin Luther King, as well as the techniques and structures of competitive debate. Explore many applications of public speaking, including business and motivational speaking, entertainment, and speeches for weddings and funerals. Develop the stylistic and performance aspects of speaking, with attention given to elocution, inflection, stance and gesture.

Social Sciences

Voyages in Afternoon Tea

"Each cup of tea represents an imaginary voyage" - Catherine Douzel - Britain consumes around 165 million cups of tea each day. Afternoon tea is an English institution, accompanied by sandwiches, scones or cake. Explore the culture and history of this English activity through the tea rooms, collections, shops and houses in Oxford. This will be a voyage of discovery leading from a variety of taste sensations to an exploration of English customs, rituals, trade and wars.



Once classes are over, you will have a full and varied schedule of extra-curricular opportunities to choose from. The below trips and activities are included in the program fee, so you will never be at a loss for something to do.


The Summerfuel Oxford team will work closely with students to determine their interests and fill the afternoons and evenings with varied options around Lady Margaret Hall and Oxford. Each day the Activities Director plans several activities in the afternoon, from cricket on the lawn to Harry Potter tours, and one or two larger community events in the afternoon. Past favorites have included outdoor movies, Oxford ghost tours, Casino night and the annual visit from our guest hypnotist. Suggestions are always welcome!

Past favorites include:

High tea, Croquet, Cricket, Formal dinner, Harry Potter Tour, Soccer, Tennis (courts on-site), Shakespeare performances, Basketball, Punting, Spa night, Casino night, Ice skating, Trivia night, College admissions workshops, British food tours.

For more information about program activities, check out last summer's program blog:

Read the Summerfuel Oxford blog



Every weekend, you will travel to historic sites to make sure you see the best that England has to offer.

Best of London: Part I

We'll enjoy the ultimate British show, The Changing of the Guard, and explore Central London via The Jubilee Walk. You'll take in amazing views of the River Thames, Parliament Square and Westminster Abbey. Stop in at musums and places of interest before finishing up with great food and shopping in Covent Garden.

Best of London: Part II

This time we'll get away from the hustle and bustle of the tourist track and head to North West London starting at Abbey Road. A relaxing day in Regents Park will finsh up in trendy Camden Town with ample time for shopping and eating at Camden Market and the high street.

Blenheim Palace

Explore the 18th century palace and its extensive grounds, home to the 11th Duke and Duchess of Marlborough and birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill. Tour the palace and then take a turn in the classic hedge maze in the garden.

Broughton Castle

Discover one of England’s most beautiful castles, where the films The Scarlet Pimpernel and Shakespeare in Love were filmed. The property has a beautiful garden tea shop and the Lord of the manor, Lord Saye & Sele, is often seen pruning the hedges and taking tea among the flowers.


Summerfuel provides the following optional trips at an extra cost to a limited number of students. Alternate activities are always provided for students who chose not to participate in these “optional extras.” Further details and registration instructions are sent in the late winter.

London Bike Tour, $75

Visit Buckingham Palace, the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, the Royal Parks, Kensington Palace, Big Ben and Trafalgar Square – and learn about their history. This leisurely and comfortable tour is open to bike riders of all levels.

London West End Theatre, (price will vary by show)

Join us for an evening in London and one of the world's most memorable theatre experiences.  Price includes transportation, supervision and ticket cost.  Past shows have included 42nd Street, Wicked, Bend it Like Beckham and more.  2019 options will be announced in early June


Our summer staff members are at the heart of all that we do. Supported by our New York headquarters, our program directors and resident advisors create an exciting and balanced residential, academic and extracurricular experience each summer.


RAs are an essential part of the Summerfuel experience and are hired solely 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 to eleven students. RAs are always available to organize activities, provide tours around Oxford, answer questions and make sure our students get the most out of their summer.


At Summerfuel, we are particularly proud of our exceptional program directors. We believe that strong, nurturing and experienced leadership sets the tone for a successful program.
The senior staff at Summerfuel Oxford is composed of a Director, a Residence Life Director, an Academic Director, an Activities Director, and a Student Services Director. The Director, Emily Osborne, has been with Summerfuel in Oxford for 9 years and this will be her 5th summer as the Director. During the academic year, Emily works as an AP/Honors high school teacher. Additionally, our Director Emeritus, Paul Saville, oversees much of the program administration. Paul has led the Oxford Experience program for over 30 years. He is an Oxford professor and artist and resides in the city year-round.


The safety, security, and overall well-being of our students is our utmost priority. We implement the following measures to ensure our students are well cared for and safe at all times. You can read more about student safety here.
  • 1 to 8 student to residential staff ratio
  • 24-hour security with a team of porters on staff at Lady Margaret Hall
  • Electronic key pass required for entry into residence hall buildings
  • Designated zone in which students can travel within Oxford
  • Buddy system to ensure students never travel alone
  • 11pm daily curfew and face-to-face check-in
  • Zero tolerance for drug / alcohol use or bullying
  • Read our full code of conduct here




Escorted Flight from New York

Summerfuel offers escorted transatlantic flights from New York City on regularly scheduled airlines for all of our Pre-College Oxford program. All students traveling on Summerfuel escorted flights will be accompanied on their international flight and transferred to and from the airport on their arrival and departure free of charge. Upon return to the US, students are released from the program at the point of entry once they have cleared customs. Full information about escorted flights will be sent to enrolled students when available. Please note that students are responsible for booking and paying for their own seats on escorted and group flights.

Indidviual Air Travel

Summerfuel staff will meet students at the designated program airports, within the specified arrival time windows, at no additional cost. Students will be met at the baggage claim arrivals area or outside customs, and Summerfuel will transport students between the airport and the program campus. Students traveling outside of the specified time windows or to/from a different airport are responsible for their own transportation costs. Summerfuel is happy to assist with these arrangements. More details will be sent to enrolled students closer to the program start date.

Alternate Travel / Family Drop-Off

If you are not planning to meet our staff at Heathrow, it is still important for us to know how you will be getting to and from Lady Margaret Hall. Oxford is easily accessible from London via car or train and families often incorporate family travel before or after the program to explore England further.

International Students / Travel Visas

All students are responsible for making travel arrangements, ensuring that they meet the entry and exit requirements of their host country and obtaining all travel documents (including visas) necessary to attend a Summerfuel program. Students are responsible for applying for the appropriate tourist/visitor visa with enough time to meet these deadline.

Read International Student Details