Selective Pre-College Programs in Economics, Business, and the Environment.

Designed for student leaders who want to understand the economic concepts shaping local, national, and international issues in an interactive academic environment.

In person and online programs are available.

Our Programs

Pre-college programs for rising high school juniors and seniors.

Environment &
the Economy

The E&E program provides an overview of how to use economic principles to analyze environmental issues.  Participants learn how a rational approach helps develop a better understanding of the complexity of these issues and how they may be solved.

Instruction is hands-on and builds skills needed for success in college and beyond. Join us this summer to learn how economics can help navigate intractable environmental issues.

Entrepreneurship in
the Global Economy

EGE offers students the opportunity to learn from business executives about how to turn ideas into a successful venture. The interactive approach provides a deeper understanding of economic concepts that drive the global economy and the unique challenges faced by entrepreneurs.

Students who want to immerse themselves into real-life simulations about entrepreneurship will not want to miss this course. Apply today for this unique opportunity!

Economics for

EFL is a distinctive opportunity for young leaders to learn economic principles and how they relate to successful leadership. The program’s interactive curriculum provides students with a unique opportunity for engagement in a challenging setting that teaches the critical skills for success in college and beyond.

Participants have consistently rated EFL as “life-changing.” Join us this summer for EFL and experience it for yourself!

Economics for Leaders

In its 33rd year, Economics for Leaders (EFL) teaches student leaders to integrate economics into decision making. This selective program is held on prestigious campuses nationwide and is also offered virtually.

Programs are led by economics professors and leadership facilitators selected for their expertise and teaching effectiveness. Morning discussions, activities, and interactive sessions introduce participants to the “economic way of thinking.” Afternoon sessions build an understanding of leadership and participants practice leadership skills in a fun-filled series of tasks and dilemmas. Key topics from both micro- and macro-economics are covered during the week. Online and in-person programs are available.

EFL Sites, Dates & Deadlines
Extended Deadline: May 1, 2024

Entrepreneurship in the Global Economy

The world is filled with big ideas. Businesses built on big ideas, however, are far rarer. For an entrepreneur to turn their big idea into a thriving business, they need more than just passion, grit, and accounting skills. An understanding of economic concepts that explain human behavior and drive the global economy is key.

Entrepreneurship in the Global Economy (EGE) provides this by going beyond what most pre-college entrepreneurship programs teach. Participants not only learn practical skills, like writing a business plan or how to pitch an idea, but also about the economic principles that make successful entrepreneurship possible. To build a business, an entrepreneur must understand incentives and the role institutions, like government, play in setting the “rules of the game”.

EGE Sites, Dates & Deadlines
EXTENDED Deadline: May 1, 2024

July 8-14, 2024

Cornell University


Environment & the Economy

Environment & the Economy (E&E) uses an engaging cross-curricular approach to engage students in seemly intractable environmental issues. Instead of the generally adopted policy of dealing with environmental problems through the criminal code and moral approbation, which can lead to a “we vs them” atmosphere, E&E participants will learn use a rational approach, based on economic principles, to analyze and better understand complex environmental matters. 

All sessions are highly interactive and led by outstanding, nationally recognized professors. The program pedagogy combines content lectures, hands-on classroom activities, and case studies. A highlight of the program is a field trip that illuminates the challenges and solutions to a specific environmental issue.

E&E Site, Date & Deadline
EXTENDED Deadline: May 1, 2024

July 29-August 4, 2024

UC Santa Barbara

Program Graduates will be able to:

  • Elevate their resume with distinctive experiences
  • Practice leadership skills
  • Learn advanced economics coursework
  • Network for internships in Washington, D.C.
  • Navigate dorm life
  • Connect with future college friends
  • Experience new situations that are invaluable for college application essay writing
  • Enjoy a life-changing experience

Program Details

Admission is competitive, with decisions based on leadership potential and maturity. Applications consist of a personal statement, letter of recommendation and complete high school transcript.

  • Who Can Apply?

    Students who are currently sophomores and juniors in high school are eligible to attend. There is a nominal processing fee ($35) when an application is submitted.

  • Admission

    Applications are considered, reviewed, and accepted on a rolling basis. Space is limited at each site, so we encourage students to apply early to increase their chance of admittance to their preferred site.

  • Costs

    In-person programs cost $2300. This includes lodging, meals and course materials. Participants are also responsible for the cost of transportation to and from the program site as well as incidental spending money. Tuition for the virtual program is $800.

  • Scholarships

    Scholarships range from $100 to $1500 and are awarded based on need and merit. Full scholarships are rare. To apply, please fill out the scholarship section when completing the Student Application.

  • College Credit for EFL

    Through a partnership with the University of Colorado, students attending EFL can earn two semester hours of undergraduate credit.

  • Nominate an Outstanding Student

    We invite teachers, counselors, affiliates, and alumni to nominate outstanding sophomores and juniors in high school. To nominate a student visit: Nominate


FTE has proven to be more than a simple leadership or economics session for me this past week. It has been a week of self-study, and the activities have given me insight into the way that I respond to unnatural and difficult environments, how I interact with my peers, and how I act as a self-interested player in the economy.

Jun-Davinci Choi

Brown University

I came into the EFL program nervous and unsure about what I would face in the upcoming week. Now, I am humbled to say that this experience has brought out the best learner and leader in me that I never knew existed. I am proud to say this has been one of the most invigorating and beneficial weeks of my life!

Michael Treiber

Washington University

Attending this virtual program was indescribable and it brought me a step closer to achieving my dream! Meeting professors from across the country and connecting with students, who shared similar interests, from across the world was loads of fun. I am so thankful to FTE and I highly recommend this program!

Darisi Garg

Emory Online Cohort
Online and in-person programs are available.

Understand economic concepts that shape the global economy in a fun-filled, interactive environment

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