Welcome to Emerson Academy

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Aim High, Reach, Succeed . . .

and get a head start on your path to college.


Emerson Academy is a free summer academic camp aimed at helping students improve their SAT and ACT scores as well as assisting them with their plans to apply to colleges and universities.  This program is a collaboration of the Collier County Chapter of the National Association of Colored People (NAACP) and the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Greater Naples (UUCGN).


The mission of the Emerson Academy is to expand the pool of qualified Collier and Lee County High School students from historically under-served populations who want to enter fields of science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM), and other highly compensated professions such as medicine, law, business creation, management, etc.   We focus on assisting those minority high school students from ethnic populations which are disproportionately under-represented in STEM and other high paying professional fields. 



The Emerson Academy faculty is comprised of certified public and private high school teachers from Collier County.   Our truly dedicated faculty members understand Collier County Pubic School academic programs and have extensive experience working with students from the Southwest Florida community.    Our instructors and guidance counselor aim to improve our students’ skills and confidence so that they increase their chances for admission to top universities.  




Emerson Academy @ UUCGN is scheduled for three days each week for the three-week period starting July 6, 2021.  The academic program is conducted online.


If you are one of the first in your family to aspire to a university education and currently attend a public high school in Collier or Lee County, you should consider applying for admission to Emerson Academy.   The Academy seeks applicants who have excellent academic records, are self-motivated, and are active participants in challenging extra-curricular projects in high school and in their community. 


Admissions for Emerson Academy are currently limited to students who will be rising juniors or rising seniors this summer (enrolled in 10th or 11th grade at time of application).  



The Academy’s professional faculty is recruited from Naples area public and private high schools.  These teachers work to help you improve your abilities to take required SAT or ACT entrance examinations, providing specific instruction in language arts and mathematics.   Other sessions, conducted by educational and retired career professionals, will help you to prepare your college application essay and improve your communication skills for college and job interviews.  Each of the nine days of the instructional program includes a free breakfast, lunch, and between class snacks.




Emerson Academy is FREE for all students who are admitted to this summer program.  Educational materials, notebooks, etc., for the instructional sessions are also provided free.  However, the family of each student will be responsible for providing transportation to and from the Congregation facility.



For rising juniors and rising seniors, you can get a head start on the college planning and application process.   

  • You will learn how to improve your SAT and ACT scores. 

  • Our professional guidance counselor will conduct sessions that focus on how to select a college or university best suited for you and how to find financial aid to cover college expenses. 

  • You will develop a chart of tasks you should accomplish as you move ahead with the college application process. 

  • You will also be able to meet with retired professionals in such areas as medicine, biomedical research, engineering, medical device inventions, entrepreneurship, and other fields to gain information relating to what college studies may be most valuable as your consider various career options. 

Here are just a few of the messages from our Emerson Scholars from the class of summer 2019:

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Simply enter your name and other required information in the section below.  Alternatively, you may send an email with your home address including a phone contact number to emersonacademy@uunaples.org.  An application form will be mailed to you promptly with a return envelop.  You will have to complete the application yourself and return it along with a copy of your latest high school transcript and any test results you may have for the PSAT, SAT, and ACT examination.


Due to the current high school year interruptions and timing uncertainties as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, we have extended the deadline for submission of applications for Emerson Academy to May 31. 2021.   In addition, we understand that school facility closings have prevented students from obtaining copies of their latest high school transcripts to include with the applications.  Therefore, we are accepting applications without transcripts.   


Please check back with our website to watch for any further changes with Emerson Academy's summer program that may be required because of the pandemic.


 NEW DATE:  Completed applications MUST BE POSTMARKED BY May 31, 2021. 


In the afternoon, students may participate in a variety of programs and seminars, including:

  • College application essay writing for rising seniors

  • Guidance counseling sessions including a college application process checklist

  • Workshop/Seminar for better communications & leadership

  • How to succeed in job and college interviews

As a result of Emerson Academy student participation in our afternoon sessions several of the students made productive connections with outside organizations like the League of Women Voters, the Zonta Club of Naples, and the STEMinist Movement.   In addition, as a result of student interest in creating community service projects, two of our 2019 students were acknowledged for their creation of a high school community service literacy program with a collaboration of their high shool and a local library.



The Emerson Academy @ UUCGN will be held over a three-week period on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, July 6-22, 2021.  The program runs from 8:15 AM to 2:30 PM each day.  A typical day consists of two 1-1/2 hour sessions in language arts and mathematics before lunch.  Afternoon sessions will include a variety of topics as described above and will also provide opportunities for student-led programs, as well as student-led project planning in community service programs.    

NOTE:  Students must commit to attending all 9 days of instruction during the three-week period.

The daily schedule is shown below.

8:15 AM - 9:00 AM:       (This year classes are online,

                                         so schedule may be different)

9:00 AM - 10:30 AM:     Instruction Period 1*

10:30 AM - 10:45 AM:   Break/Snack

10:45 AM - 12:15 PM:   Instruction Period 2*

12:15 PM - 1:00 PM     Lunch

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM       Creative Exploration Time

2:00 PM - 2:30 PM       Students depart.  

* There are two separate sessions, language arts and mathematics, in each Instruction period.  Half the students attend each of the two sessions in the first instruction period and attend the other two sessions in the second instruction period.  

Program Costs
  • Emerson Academy @ UUCGN does not charge a tuition fee. 

  • Course materials, breakfast, and lunch are also provided at no charge.

  • The program is a collaborative effort of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP Collier Country) and UUCGN, and is made available for free to qualified students through the generous support of UUCGN's Social Justice Education Fund.

Admission to Emerson Academy @ UUCGN


Students will be asked to complete a simple written application.  We urge students with competitive, strong academic records, to apply for FREE admission to the Emerson Academy @ UUCGN.  Our faculty give special consideration to the following:  

  • Students who demonstrate the intellectual potential, academic success, self-motivation, and determination to break into STEM fields

  • Low socio-economic status, which may be indicated by eligibility for public assistance programs, or free/reduced lunch programs

  • Under-represented ethnic minorities

  • First generation for college (neither parent completed a bachelor’s degree)


NOTE:  Admissions will favor those students who commit to attending all 9 days of instruction during the three-week period.


There is a limited number of openings for the Emerson Academy @ UUCGN for 2021. 

Students will be selected on the basis of application information requested:

  • Family and student information

  • Academic transcripts

  • Standardized test scores, if available

  • One or two recommendation letters (including one from a STEM teacher)

  • A short essay about your interest in an education leading to a career in a STEM field

How to apply

To request an application for admission to the Summer 2021 Emerson Academy,

please complete and submit the information request form below.

*The application deadline has been extended to June 1 in light of the coronavirus outbreak and school closures.

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)’s mission is to ensure the political, educational, social and economic equality of rights of all people and to eliminate racial hatred and racial discrimination.

UUCGN’s mission is to strive to create a larger community of peace, justice and love.

Emerson Academy @ UUCGN does not discriminate on the basis of race, color,  national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, age, disability, or sexual orientation.



You may request additional information by calling Dr. Bill McCormick, Emerson Academy Director, at .

All information in the application and student registration is confidential.

Attendance is limited to 40 students and we urge you to apply as soon as possible.

Emerson Academy @ UUCGN takes place in the facilities on the campus of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Greater Naples, 6340 Napa Woods Way, Naples, FL  34116.

© 2020 Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Greater Naples • 6340 Napa Woods Way • Naples, FL 34116 • (239) 455-6553


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