The New York College Seminar

Grades 9-12
July 31-August 6, 2018
Tuition: $2550

The New York College Seminar is housed in Barnard College, Columbia University. Students live in the same rooms as undergraduates during the year, and work with leading academics, business practitioners, and creative professionals. They choose one Major course and rotate through a selection of Workshops. Outside class, students take part in college application seminars, local college tours, and of course immerse themselves in everything New York has to offer, from a Broadway show to a baseball game via some of the world’s most iconic sites. Scroll down to read course descriptions, faculty bios, and apply now!


Students on The New York College Seminar select their Major from the following academic courses.


Working from case studies, and making the most of New York’s unrivaled business resources, students decipher the codes to successful business leadership, and discover what makes one entrepreneur succeed where another fails. By trying their hand at game theory and various negotiation tactics, they get to grips with managerial organization in all its forms.

Human Rights Law

Following an historical introduction to the idea of Human Rights, students are introduced to contrasting national legislations, to the treaties and customary laws that structure Human Rights internationally, and to the instruments devised to promote and protect them, such as the UN Declaration of Human Rights and the European Convention on Human Rights. Working through current crises, case recreation, as well as legal theory, and taking rapid social change into account, students devise a Charter for the 21st century. 

International Relations

This course introduces students to the various academic disciplines and theoretical tools that define International Relations. In addition to studying the history of nations and their interactions with one another, they tackle a range of contemporary case studies. These include the rise of ISIS and the war against them; the Syrian refugee crisis and the issues surrounding mass immigration; and the "Brexit" vote and its aftermath. Can the origins of these issues be unraveled in such a way as to find new ways forward with them? This question is posed in the city that hosts the United Nations, and whose financial sector continues to have a massive influence on world affairs.


This hands-on course introduces students to key aspects of medicine and modern medical practice. Combining specialist lectures with experiments and class discussions, students learn the main principles of human anatomy and physiology, the pathology and significance of certain diseases, the main challenges that medical science faces today, and the variety and changing nature of careers in medicine.


Led by researchers engaged in cutting-edge work in experimental psychology, students address a different topic each morning. These include introductions to mental processes and problem solving, Evolutionary Psychology, Clinical Psychology, Behaviorism, and Psychoanalysis. In addition to surveying various fields, students learn how research projects are developed and experiments undertaken.

Public Speaking  (Workshop only)

In 21st-century working life, everyone will at some point be asked to deliver a presentation, regardless of their occupation. Being an effective and persuasive speaker requires flawless communication skills – verbal, nonverbal, and written. Students learn how to prepare and deliver compelling speeches to a large and critical audience. The syllabus covers the core principles of communication, the history and theory of rhetoric, and techniques for overcoming speech anxiety. Students gain a sense of how to structure and organize information, and acquire decision-making skills and knowledge of how to present their ideas effectively.

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Our teachers are academics and researchers drawn from local leading universities (Columbia, NYU, Yale, among others) as well as established professionals. A few members of our Faculty are featured here - visit our Faculty page to view the full list. 

Jillian Minahan

BS, MA Fordham University 

Jillian’s research focuses on the interrelationships between physical health, psychological well-being, and health behaviors, such as exercise, among older adults. She is a decorated scholar and has received several prestigious prizes for her work. Among them are the Centennial Scholarship and the Graduate Student Association Professional Development Grant, both awarded by Fordham University.

Michael Edward McGuire

BS Babson College, BA Columbia University, MIA Columbia University, School of International and Public Affairs

Michael has worked for over twenty years in international business. His career began with a banking position at Manufacturers Hanover Trust Company. He left this to begin building companies independently. His early projects included a commodity trading and structured finance company, an offshore software development company, and an asset management company. Michael was recognized as a finalist for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2004, and went on to serve on the boards of two publicly-traded enterprises: Stillwater Mining Company and Plug Power. Today he spends much of his time negotiating and making transactions for businesses based in Russia, China, India, and Europe.

Dr. Hemant Sabharwal

MB Ain Shams University, BCh Ain Shams University, PhD Lunds Universitet

Dr. Sabharwal is an Assistant Professor of Microbiology and Hematology at Hunter College, and a member of the department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology at Rockefeller University. His clinical research focuses on pediatric nutrition and infectious diseases. He has particular expertise in carbohydrate and protein purification in the field of cancer prevention. Dr. Sabharwal is also an experienced businessman, having been the Executive Vice President of Laktobiotics LLC for over a decade.

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Our Residence

Barnard College is an independent liberal arts college established in 1889 and has been affiliated with Columbia University since 1900. Columbia University, an Ivy League institution, was founded by Royal Charter as King’s College in 1754 and is the oldest university in New York. Barnard was named after Frederick Augustus Porter Barnard, the President of Columbia University, in 1889.

Barnard College sits in Morningside Heights, a neighborhood just north of the Upper West Side, minutes from the bustle of Midtown, and a short walk from the Hudson River, Riverside Park, and the urban oasis of Central Park. On campus students can enjoy a picnic on the lawns, exercise in the gym at Columbia University, and relax with friends in the seventeenth floor lounge while taking in the breathtaking views of the New York skyline. The surrounding neighborhood features a diverse selection of shops, restaurants, and cafes, as well as notable sites such as Tom's Restaurant, the diner used in exterior shots of the television sitcom Seinfeld, and the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, one of the largest cathedrals in the world.

Students are housed in the College in singles or doubles.  All rooms have air-conditioning.


Outside class, students take part in college application workshops, local college visits, and of course immerse themselves in everything New York has to offer, from a Broadway show to a baseball game via some of the world’s most iconic sites. Students marvel at the city’s architectural masterpieces, explore open spaces, parks, and gardens, see a Broadway show, and discover a world of opportunity under the guidance, advice, and care of our on-site staff.

Useful Info for Parents


Every student is met personally at JFK or Newark airport upon arrival and escorted to the program. At the end of the program, they are accompanied back to the airport, where we oversee check-in and departure. A representative stays at the airport until every flight has departed.


Barnard College, Columbia University, is situated in a safe neighborhood, with controlled access and twenty-four hour security. Day-to-day life is overseen by teams of Deans - professional educators drawn from leading schools in the US, Canada, and Australia. The College has a program office, in a central location, which is open and permanently staffed by Deans from before 8am until well past midnight. Every student checks in personally, twice, every evening, with the Deans on duty. The Program Director, Deans, residential staff, and some members of faculty live in the residences, ensuring round-the-clock care and supervision.

Student Safety, Rules, and Behavior

Program Blog

Every summer, students and teachers on The New York College Seminar maintain a blog, which provides unparalleled insight into daily life, classes, and activities.  Last summer’s blog is available here!

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