Other Worlds: Science Meets Storytelling

Eligibility Requirements

Rising 10th–12th graders


Mies Campus 


June 17–August 2 from 10 a.m.–4 p.m.

*There will be no programming scheduled on Juneteenth, which falls on Wednesday, June 19, 2024.


$6,000; a $100 deposit is due at the time of registration


Program Description

Explore strange worlds and write your own in the Illinois Tech Other Worlds summer program. Participating students will earn nine credits in university coursework while studying science and science fiction in this summer intensive. You will learn how to put the science into your science fiction while also producing well-crafted text. Join us to learn about the astrophysics of exoplanets and stars, the chemical processes that give birth to these systems while simultaneously honing your story writing and character development skills. Offered on Mies campus, Other Worlds runs for six weeks from June 17 to August 2. By the end of the program, students will have earned nine college-level credits all while working closely with experts in their fields. The courses offered are: 

  • Chemistry 150 (three credits): This course will spotlight the chemical processes in the universe, focusing on the roles of dust and gas in the interstellar medium, protoplanetary disks, and planetary atmospheres. It will also delve into the chemistry of stars and solar systems. Students will learn about spectra, essential for detecting and identifying atoms and molecules in space. Embrace this opportunity to understand the universe through the lens of chemistry, illuminating the connections between the microscopic particles and the vast universe. 
  • Humanities 150 (three credits): Explore classic and contemporary works of science fiction while honing your own writing skills. Topics covered include world building, plot structure, and character development. Upon completion, you’ll have completed two short stories and read and watched a lot of mind-bending media. 
  • Physics 150 (three credits): This course will illustrate the physical processes that govern both stellar and planetary formation and evolution. Students will learn about the wide variety of planets that have been discovered in the last few decades. Emphasis will be placed on factors that govern the habitability of these “exoplanets.” Through exploration of the many wonders of our own solar system and others, students will enhance their ability to visualize and describe realistic environments on other planets. 

Example Activities

  • Perform experiments using chemistry lab equipment
  • Create short stories in science fiction


Questions about the application process? Email them to precollege@iit.edu.