Set in beautiful Lugano, the TASIS Summer Programs in Switzerland offer intensive academic courses, an unparalleled performing arts program, thrilling outdoor adventures, advanced sports training, and exciting cultural excursions to students ranging in age from 4½–18. Below are 10 reasons why we believe there is no better place to spend your summer.
You will build lasting friendships with students from all over the world.
Above all else, the TASIS Summer Programs are about friendship. You will discover a vibrant global community of students who represent more than 60 nations and speak more than 30 languages—all while exploring some of the most beautiful and exciting areas in Europe, challenging yourself physically, and expanding your horizons in the classroom.
We asked many students what they love about coming to TASIS, and while they touched upon a number of themes in their answers, it was friendship that stood out among the rest. Have a look for yourself:
In the following video, students from our Middle School Program (ages 11–13) discuss how their counselors make them feel like TASIS is their home, how kind and accepting everyone is, and how quickly they are able to form friendships with students from all over the globe.
Here we offer a 360° look at several aspects of the TASIS Summer Programs, culminating with an emotional performance of the original TASIS song “Together.” Each session concludes with a performance of this song (and quite a few tears).
While many of our excursions throughout the summer are designed to challenge students physically or expose them to new cultural experiences, some are simply about spending quality time with friends in a pleasant environment off campus. The short video below takes a look at one of the local trips students in the Château des Enfants program (ages 4½–10) enjoyed in 2017.
You will add your own chapter to a storied history.
TASIS has been defined by tradition and excellence since international education pioneer M. Crist Fleming founded the first American boarding school in Europe in 1956. Her idea was to transplant the American independent school tradition into the culturally and historically rich garden of Europe. TASIS has flourished ever since, providing leadership in international education and opening additional schools and summer programs in England, Greece, Cyprus, Italy, France, Spain, Puerto Rico, and Portugal.
Through their TASIS education, more than 25,000 young people from all over the world have learned respect for other people, races, and cultures; for past and current endeavors in the arts and sciences; and for themselves as moral and responsible individuals. Mrs. Fleming often said, “Times change, values don’t.” The values TASIS has always taught and stood for are based on the intellectual virtues of Culture (humanitas), Wisdom (sapientia), Knowledge (scientia), and Truth (veritas).
Watch the video below to learn more about our incomparable founder and storied history.
You will dare to dream big.
Much of what makes TASIS distinctive results from the entrepreneurial style of Mrs. Fleming, whose ability to see and seize opportunities and to respond to needs with alacrity is legendary. Thanks to her, TASIS enjoys a culture that encourages and rewards initiative and creativity. In addition to individual initiative and creativity, this culture demands flexibility, patience, a positive attitude, and perseverance.
From its founding in 1956 to her passing in 2009, Mrs. Fleming cited TASIS as the fulfillment of her dreams and encouraged students to follow their own—to dream big enough and bold enough to lead a life of consequence and make the world “a better place in small and large ways for all the humans who inhabit it.” Her spirit is very much alive in TASIS today.
Be inspired by Mrs. Fleming in the video below, which we created for our 60th anniversary in 2016.
You will draw inspiration from our beautiful campus.
“We are blessed indeed, each and every one of us, to live in one of the most beautiful places in the world,” remarked Mrs. Fleming in a speech to parents and students in 2003. “TASIS believes that beauty should be the birthright of every human being born into this world. So breathe deeply and daily inhale for we believe you can store it, can reserve it to fight the ugliness in the world; to meditate upon it when you face a tough situation. Think about the millions deprived of beauty, living in squalor and poverty—be thankful for the beauty we live in and that surrounds us.”
All of the magic of the TASIS Summer Programs begins on our campus. Perched on a hillside in sunny Montagnola with commanding views of snow-capped mountains, palm trees, and Lake Lugano, our ever-evolving global village comprises 25 buildings dating from the historic 17th-century Villa De Nobili to the state-of-the-art Campo Science Center. Watch the videos below to learn more about our beautiful campus.
You will be safe and well-cared for.
Switzerland is perennially ranked as one of the safest countries in the world (see the 2019 Global Peace Index here), and our Summer Program counselors and teachers provide an exceptional level of care and support for each and every student.
Families that entrust us with their children for our full boarding program know that we believe every boarding student—regardless of whether it is the summer or the academic year—has the right to expect peace, reasonable privacy, respect for feelings and belongings, and a safe living environment in his or her dorm room. We emphasize consideration for others and community spirit and believe that when cooperation and understanding prevail, residential life becomes the source of meaningful and lasting friendships.
In the video below, which was created during the 2018–2019 academic year, High School boarding students showcase their rooms and discuss what life is like in the TASIS dorms.
Students in the TASIS Summer Programs can begin boarding as early as age seven, and in the video below we offer a look at the Château des Enfants (CDE) boarding program (ages 7–10). Staffed by caring and dedicated educators, the CDE boarding program is a vibrant and intimate community that reflects the ethos of the TASIS schools by encouraging children to respect and learn from one another. We place our young boarders with students from cultures and countries different than their own, and all students enjoy a highly structured routine that helps them feel safe and encourages them to find their independence. See this work in action in the video below.
You will discover the magic of one of the world's most beautiful regions.
Capitalizing on our location in the heart of Europe, our travel program will introduce you to majestic natural settings—from the Swiss Alps to the Italian lakes to the Mediterranean coast. You’ll also have ample opportunities to explore stunning Swiss and Italian cities, including Andermatt, Basel, Zermatt, Zurich, Florence, Milan, Rome, Siena, and Venice.
In the following video, students from the TASIS Summer Program (ages 14–18) effectively capture what we like to call “the magic of TASIS.”
We also offer a closer look at two of the signature cultural trips offered each summer: Rome and Venice.
Not to be overlooked is the breathtaking beauty of Lake Lugano, which can be reached from our campus in just five minutes. Situated between Lake Maggiore and Lake Como and flanked by Monte Brè to the east, Monte San Salvatore to the west, and Monte Generoso to the southeast, Lake Lugano’s 48.7 square kilometers of surface area provide a wide range of recreational opportunities for our students all summer long.
You’ll be pushed outside your comfort zone, and you will rise to the challenge.
There is no shortage of adventure opportunities at the TASIS Summer Programs. Whatever you wish to try—whitewater rafting, canyoning, kayaking, canoeing, waterskiing, windsurfing, sailing, paddleboarding, glacier hiking, ice climbing, rock climbing, zip-lining, riding an alpine slide, and more—we have you covered.
If you’re a sports enthusiast, you may choose to participate in our tennis or golf academies; in our Armani Junior Basketball Club, where coaches from the Olimpia Milan Armani Junior Program focus on physical strength and the elements of fitness necessary to improve player confidence and performance; or in our Milan Academy Scuola Calcio, which offers you the exceptional opportunity to work on your skills with coaches from the renowned AC Milan Club.
You will learn new skills and develop your mind.
While our programs provide plenty of time to play and explore, most mornings are dedicated to traditional classroom learning with a first-rate team of dedicated educators. Among other options, you can take intensive courses in Italian, French, or English as an Additional Language; build an academic writing portfolio; prepare for the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program; develop your own lean startup; learn how to cook like an Italian; and study robotics, science, graphic design, digital photography, architecture & design, fashion & textile design, or musical theater.
With our younger students, we focus on building confidence and nurturing curiosity about the world in a safe, family-like atmosphere. Small class sizes allow our professional educators to engage the children using songs, games, and hands-on activities that help make learning fun, and our international environment helps students develop an appreciation for other languages and cultures.
We also offer a special program for our youngest students, the Minnows (ages 4½-6), who are exposed to English or French through daily lessons, develop their creative skills, and explore the surrounding area.
You will grow as an artist.
The arts have played a central role at TASIS since its founding in 1956 by Mrs. Fleming, who believed “a love of literature, the arts, and the performing arts is the heart and soul of education.” Chairman of the Board Lynn Fleming Aeschliman has followed in her mother’s footsteps as the School’s greatest champion of the arts, and our Summer Programs are designed to build confidence and bring out the artist in every child.
While the performing arts have long been an integral part of the TASIS Summer Programs, it was the creation of the Dedicated Performing Arts Team (DPAT) in 2013 that pushed the program to new heights. This team of professional actors, musicians, dancers, and writers runs comprehensive musical theater courses for middle and high school students and performing arts workshops for younger students; prepares students of all ages for a variety of musical theater, drama, dance, and music performances (watch all the major performances from the summers of 2018 and 2019); showcases its own considerable talents with a staff talent show while providing students an opportunity to do the same; and offers cultural events that often bring leading professionals from the region to campus.
You will hone your existing talents and discover new ones. Whether you want to star in an original musical, learn a new instrument, perform a modern dance, write your own script or song, paint a canvas of the campus, take the perfect photo, design a poster, create an architecture model, or design a clothing line, our devoted team of visual and performing arts professionals will help you achieve your goal.
You will pack more into three weeks than you ever dreamed possible.
Our summer programs move at a dizzying pace, and by the end of a session you won’t believe how much you’ve learned, how much you’ve seen, and how much you’ve grown in less than a month.
To gain a better sense of all that goes on in a single week at TASIS, have a look at our most recent weekly highlight video below.
You can also view all of our weekly highlight videos from the past two summers in the following blog posts:
The robust and fast-paced TASIS Summer Programs are designed to unlock the unique potential of every student and ultimately produce what Mrs. Fleming called “international human beings—men and women who are capable of moving easily in any society and any civilization on the face of the earth.” We invite you to join us in Lugano this summer to see this important work in action!
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