ISPY (International Summer Programs for Youth)

Summer is the perfect time to explore new topics of interest or delve deeper to follow one’s passions. In July and August, we offer short-duration programs that are enriching and stimulating. Join students from around the globe in these unique summer programs. Youth between the ages of 8 and 18 can spend time enhancing their skills in a specific area through an intensive, hands-on learning experience with expert instructors.

Structured classes include:

  • practice sessions,
  • exercises,
  • skill-building activities,
  • group work,
  • field trips,
  • and other forms of learning that complement the subject area.

Tuition includes:

  • Victoria International Airport transfers
  • accommodation in our campus residences
  • three meals per day plus evening snack
  • curricula tailored to students’ interest and ability levels
  • evening and weekend activities
  • weekend overnight excursions
  • weekly academic field trips
  • admission to all attractions
  • comprehensive medical insurance
  • free campus-wide wifi
  • SMUS program souvenir

See testimonials from students in Arabic, German, Swiss German, Spanish, Russian, Kazakh and Turkish.

Sample Schedule

Time Mon - Fri Saturday Sunday
7:30-8:15 am Wake up and breakfast in Brown Hall
8:30-10:15 am Classes Day trip to Vancouver sightseeing, shopping etc. Field trip e.g. Island View Beach
10:30-11:45 am Classes
11:45 am - 12:30 pm Lunch
12:30-4:00 pm Afternoon electives*/Service/field trip
4:00-4:30 pm Afternoon check-in
5:00-6:00 pm Dinner in Brown Hall Dinner
6:00-6:45 pm Prep/study time Prep/study time
7:00-9:00 pm Evening activities/Surprise Night/Variety Night Free time
9:00 pm Snack in Brown Hall/free time
9:30-11:00 pm Evening check-in/quiet time/free time/lights out, depending on program and age of participant

* Afternoon electives could include sports, music, drama, dance, art, technology, and more.

Intensive English Language Programs

These intense, challenging and rewarding English language programs are designed to give beginner to advanced level English learners a well-rounded academic and cultural learning experience. Upon arrival, students take the iTEP English Assessment test, and are then placed into classes that range in size from 12 to 15 students who come from all over the world and have similar skill levels. Classes are also balanced to consider cultural background, age, gender, and maturity level. There are five distinct levels: Junior, Beginner, Intermediate, Upper Intermediate, and Advanced. The curriculum and range of difficulty vary according to the level. All levels spend the morning in structured classes. The afternoons vary depending on the level. All levels include the following:


  • 20–25 hours per week of formal English instruction, Monday to Friday
  • British Columbia-certified teachers
  • language-integrated skills workshops
  • interaction with local Canadian students who act as mentors and encourage participants to use and develop their English skills

Afternoon Electives

Electives are designed to apply authentic language to controlled learning situations. Electives are taught using second language learning principles. Students are provided with solid scaffolding to introduce and support their learning, with vocabulary lists and simple, basic model foundations on which to expand their communicative skills. Students from a range of different linguistic and cultural backgrounds are all learning new skills and concepts in a common English-speaking environment.


Each week will focus on a different topic, which could include any of the following: Digital Entertainment – creating short, animated films using stop-motion photography; App Builder – learn how to create your very own mobile app, from concept to implementation; Game Builder – create all of the elements of a phenomenal game from scratch, including characters, plot and story-line, setting, and special effects; Robotics – program your own mini robot, learning how to control movement with sensors and coding; 3D Designer – learn the intricacies of 3D printing and create your own custom-made objects.


Each week, students will have the opportunity to participate in a local, community-based service project, where specific needs have been identified. Service Projects are divided into three main areas: Environmental, Humanitarian, and Social. Past service trips have included beach clean-up; invasive species removal; work with animals at a local shelter; preparing lunches for underprivileged children; assisting with food preparation at a local homeless shelter. Students spend up to ten hours per week on service projects, and receive a certificate of completion to document their experience.


Drama classes range from simple drama games that repeat basic phrases, to more complex application of language through skits, dialogues, or monologues. Through the medium of language, drama develops vocal techniques and body awareness, while also allowing students to develop poise and self-confidence. Drama releases inhibitions, giving students license to take risks and experiment with language without worrying about perfect grammar and sentence structure.

Global Citizenship

Every summer, students from all over the world come together to study language and culture. Beyond simple language acquisition, they must also learn to interact, negotiate, and cooperate with one another, while overcoming distinct language and cultural differences. Spending time together at a summer camp is a perfect opportunity to build these skills., Learners will explore diverse identities and cultures, and think critically about their place in the world. They will develop respect for diversity, tolerance and understanding for others’ differences, while also learning about issues in other parts of the world.

Intercultural Communication

The ability to communicate effectively across cultures is a key skill for global citizenship. It begins with the examination and awareness of one’s own culture in order to understand and recognize the many dimensions of cultural difference. This understanding is the foundation for cultural fluency and the ability to form deep relationships across cultures.