Summer Institute for the Gifted Day Programs reaches third year mark at Fairfield University

Summer Institute for the Gifted Day Programs reaches third year mark at Fairfield University

The Summer Institute for the Gifted (SIG) and University College at Fairfield University are once again offering challenging and enriching courses for children in grades one through six. This three-week day program is designed to give children a place to meet new friends while being challenged academically in math, science, and the humanities.

An open house for the SIG program will take place on April 9, 2005 on Fairfield University's campus. The Open House is designed to inform families about the program details, academic curriculum, student activities information, and support services. The Open House begins at 9:30 a.m. in the Oak Room of the Fairfield University Barone Campus Center for walk-in registration, and 10 a.m. for reserved registration, coffee, and snacks. The schedule includes a presentation, question-and answer sessions, and escorted tours of the campus.

Instead of learning facts and figures, the courses focus on problem solving and practical application. Working together in groups, the children are encouraged to come up with creative solutions to the situations presented to them. The students get to choose three courses which meet five times a week for 90 minutes.

Each class contains 10-12 students per teacher. The teachers who work for this program are both certified and experienced, and most have worked with gifted children.

SIG requires evidence of high academic ability and/or achievement. At least one of SIG's criteria must be met for consideration in the program.

The program accepts academically talented students currently in grades one through six who have scored in the 95th percentile or above in at least one of the major content areas or ability sections of a nationally normed standardized test administered by their schools. Also accepted are students who have been identified as gifted and/or who have participated successfully in a local or school gifted program, or if no local or school gifted program exists, or if no test scores are available, two letters of recommendation can be submitted. For students in grades K-3, one of the letters may come from a parent, the other from the school.

Not only does the SIG provide an academic challenge, but children grow socially from the friendships they build with others who share their interests, said Rich Taubald, SIG site coordinator. "These children are part of a homogenous group," said Taubald. "This gives them the opportunity of finding somebody who shares the same interests in a subject, but also presents a challenge offered by the student's peers in the class who already have knowledge in that area."

The Summer Institute for the Gifted Program began in 1983 as a residential program. In recent years the program branched out to include day programs for younger children who are eager for the enrichment and challenge. The first two sites of the day camps were the Fairfield University Campus and Moorestown, Cherry Hill, NJ.

In the summer of 2004 the SIG program enrolled 92 students at Fairfield University, and this summer more than 100 are expected. In fact, around 50% of children who have attended the program return for another summer of challenging enrichment.

The total cost of the SIG Day Program at Fairfield University is $1,650 per student. That fee includes application fee, tuition, all laboratory fees and course materials, recreational program costs, special programs, lunch and snacks. The deadline for applications is May 1, 2005 and should be submitted as soon as possible. Applications are taken on a first come, first serve basis. Classes start July 18 and end on August 5, 2005.

For additional information about the SIG Day Program or other Summer Institute for the Gifted programs, call toll free (866) 303-4744 or visit

University College at Fairfield University is the gateway for individuals seeking undergraduate and graduate degrees as well as professional certificate programs, study abroad and personal enrichment opportunities. With an emphasis on quality, convenience and flexibility, University College offers a wide variety of evening, day, online and weekend programs taught by a distinguished faculty. University College offers an enriching personal and powerful educational experience that is backed by the resources and reputation of a great Jesuit university. For program information e-mail or visit or call (203) 254-4184.

Posted On: 03-31-2005 10:03 AM

Volume: 37 Number: 224