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2020 Virtual Summer Camp

COVID-19 Update: Due to COVID-19, the American Chemical Society and the Committee on Project SEED have decided to cancel all in-person and virtual research projects for summer 2020. ACS prioritizes the safety of the many volunteers and students that participate, and also wants to ensure a quality program experience for all students.

Instead of in-person research, ACS will be hosting a nationwide Virtual Summer Camp. Approximately 250 students will be selected to participate in this four-week program starting on July 6 and ending on July 31. The new student deadline for completing the application is May 15.

Information for Students

Virtual Student Town Hall

On May 11th and 12th, ACS hosted a virtual town hall for all students interested in the new virtual summer camp model.  Below is a link to the recording. 

View the recording here. You will need the password 7w%I@J!8

Download a copy of the student town hall slides.

Download the student brochure.


Virtual Summer Camp Breakdown

Project SEED students will now participate in a virtual summer camp that will address the following objectives:

  • Prepare students with basic lab safety skills
  • Expose students to sub-disciplines of chemistry, chemistry careers, and interesting chemistry research
  • Develop students professionally by improving professional etiquette and writing abilities
  • Students will be placed into “cabins” that will consist of 6-10 students. Two cabin leaders will lead each cabin through all aspects of the summer program. Students will attend a virtual welcome event, attend webinars, create documents to help with college and career readiness, explore sub disciplines of chemistry, take a virtual lab safety course, and participate in a virtual conference.

Students will be paid $1,000 for successfully completing the virtual summer camp experience. The program will require 10-20 hours of work from the students each week. Students will meet with their cabin leaders three times per week and once per week with a larger group. Student attendance and participation will be monitored throughout the summer experience.

Information for Project SEED Volunteers

Project SEED coordinators and mentors are encouraged to volunteer with the virtual summer camp. The following are ways in which our volunteers can still contribute:

  • Apply to serve as a Campsite Manager: If you would like to volunteer as a Campsite Manager, please sign up by May 31.  We recommend that Coordinators and Mentors apply for this role.  We will try to assign students to the mentors/coordinators they would have likely worked with.
  • Facilitate a session: If you are willing to facilitate a session that aligns with one of the camp objectives, please consider submitting a session proposal by May 31. Our goal is to receive at least 50 proposals to cover the national itinerary, virtual conference, and campsite itineraries.
  • Lead a “research hike” with students of a single “campsite” or multiple groups. This would focus on a research topic of the day with the connection between how an experiment links to the research objectives and purpose. Research hikes would give students insight into projects they would have been working on in the lab over the summer.

If you are interested in volunteering, please complete this form to let us know your intent.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How will students be selected? If a student is not close enough to an existing Project SEED site, can they still participate?  The Project SEED Committee Task Force and ACS Staff will manage student selection. Because this model is now virtual, students can participate even if they are not near a site. This actually gives us an opportunity to identify new mentors and coordinators in areas with need.

Is the student application deadline extended?  Yes, the new student application deadline is Friday, May 15. Students must submit an application to be considered.

Can Summer II students (students that have participated in Project SEED before) participate?  Yes, students that would have been considered a Summer II student this summer can still participate. Students must be enrolled in high school or a recent graduate (class of 2020) and meet all of the eligibility requirements.

What if I am selected to participate and I do not have a device or internet access at home?  Project SEED will identify students in need of a device and/or internet access via the second application. ACS will purchase laptops and internet hotspots for those in need.

If I could not choose an existing Project SEED site, can I still participate? Yes, go back and enter in a Washington DC address (you can use 1155 16th St NW Washington, DC 20036).  Then select the Virtual American Chemical Society site.  Email if you cannot change your address.

If I already applied online, will I automatically be considered for the virtual summer camp? No.  The first application was created with the original program model in mind.  You MUST opt in to the virtual summer camp by completing the second application in order to be considered.


For more information

Phone: 1-800-227-5558 (ext. 4380)
Fax: 202-872-4361  |  Email:

ACS Project SEED Program
1155 16th Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20036