CUA Light the World Summer Institute

Light the World! summer institute at Catholic University

A Catholic college experience for high school students. Be challenged intellectually and spiritually

Light the World! summer institute hosts high school students from around the country each summer at The Catholic University of America.

Summer institute participants spend a week living the life of a college student. In the mornings, they hear from engaging speakers and professors who address what the Catholic theological tradition has to say about the topic for that day (science, art, business, politics, or sports). In the afternoons, students visit exciting sights in Washington, D.C. where they meet people who have achieved excellence in their field and who can speak about the impact of their faith on their work. In the evenings, students participate in prayerful reflections and hear witnesses from the undergraduate counselors about the variety of ways God has worked in their lives.

The program looks for young men and women who fit the following categories:

  • Age: Light the World! is a summer institute for high school students who are rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors.
  • Student Leaders: We are looking for students who want to be leaders and achieve excellence in whatever they do.
  • Spiritual Maturity: We are looking for teenagers whose faith is important to them, and who want to know how it impacts their everyday lives beyond Mass and moments of prayer. Light the World! is housed within The School of Theology and Religious Studies which is based in the Roman Catholic tradition but it is open to all people of faith.
  • Young People Discerning College Choices: We seek students who want a college experience where they will be challenged intellectually and spiritually.

Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic in-person weeks are limited to 25 participants per week. The virtual week is capped at 50 participants.


In-Person Week 1 - - June 13–19, 2021 Capacity: 25 participants

In-Person Week 2 - - June 27–July 3, 2021 Capacity: 25 participants

Virtual Week 3 - - July 12–16, 2021 Capacity: 50 participants

In-Person Program Fee: $475

Virtual Program Fee: $125

Application Fee: $25 Scholarships Available

Application Deadline - May 15, 2021