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Summer Enrichment Programming

Summer Enrichment Programming prepares our students and their families for the necessity of leaving home in search of post-secondary educational opportunities, while providing enrichment opportunities to help them compete for admission and resources at more‐selective colleges. This past summer, approximately one in five students attended these programs around the city, country, and world – 15 to international programs. To make this possible, generous Cristo Rey supporters provided 18 students with almost $10,000 in supplemental financial aid, allowing them to take advantage of $84,778 in outside scholarships and program fee waivers.

Read about some these amazing experiences below!

Aileen, Spain

Aileen, Senior, Spain

"My experience in Spain allowed me to step out of my comfort zone… and experience new things, as scary as they may seem… It broadened my view to a world much bigger than my own."

"I loved every second… and it would not have been possible if it was not for the help of Cristo Rey."

Brian, Thailand

Brian, Senior, Thailand

It was one of the best experiences of my life."

"I am naturally an introverted person… During this trip I learned more about myself than I ever could in the U.S."

"Before this trip, I had never traveled outside of the country. This trip allowed me to experience what it was like to be in another country. I now plan to apply for colleges that allow me to study abroad."

Briana, California

Brianna, Senior, California

Being able to participate in this trip was a blessing. Not only did I get to explore beautiful California, I was also able to make impacts on people’s lives through service… In San Francisco, we served the homeless…We helped improve the trails at Lake Tahoe."

"The most rewarding aspect of my program was that I was able to be a Woman for Others."

"At first, adjusting… was hard – it was my first time leaving Illinois by myself."

Jazmin, Chicago

Jazmin, Junior, Chicago

I was able to get my writing out there through the open mics after taking field trips to get our creative writing juices flowing."

"I was able to get out of my comfort zone and meet a lot of cool, artistic people. I performed one of my poems and was able to get feedback."

Citlalli, Costa Rica

Citlalli, Junior, Costa Rica

This program taught me that if you study hard and meet your goals you can travel the world and have a great career."

"The most challenging part was facing my fears."

"I learned a lot about myself… I don’t need any specific person in my life to make me happy and live the best life I can."

Jessica, South Africa

Jessica, Senior, South Africa

The most rewarding aspect of my program was… staying with a Xhosa speaking family."

"As we became part of the family, we were also able to give back to this community… We were not guests, but part of the family doing chores and helping cook with our families…"

"It was ten straight days of love and happiness. I learned so much about the Xhosa culture but also about myself – I was able to grow the most here and appreciate everything that I have."

Jose, Japan

Jose, Senior, Japan

"My trip to Japan has influenced my plans for the future - I want to keep learning the Japanese language and get to a point where I can speak it fluently. I have even considered living in Japan, because of how much I enjoyed my experience there."

"The most rewarding part of my time in Japan was meeting so many great people. It’s crazy that I could become so close to people I struggled to communicate with, sharing great moments that I will cherish for the rest of my life."

"I am proud to say I have friends on the other side of the globe."

Kailey, Chicago

Kailey, Junior, Chicago

I know I have been wanting to pursue a career in law."

"The most regarding part was the opportunity to experience different practices and the opportunity to receive advice from each lawyer on their experience and how they got where they are now."

Miguel, Japan

Miguel, Senior, Japan

The language barrier… lead to some comical moments, such as my attempt to compliment the noodles being interpreted as me asking for seconds."

"The most rewarding part of the program was all the interactions I had with people I probably never would have met in my regular life…"

Nahum, Iceland

Nahum, Senior, Iceland

My trip to Iceland was amazing – not only was I able to live out my dream of camping in the mountains but I was also able to meet new people and get a glimpse at the culture in Iceland."

"I want to major in Environmental Engineering and while I was on my trip… we learned more about how Iceland uses all its resources, such as thermal vents, waterfalls, and wind, to get renewable energy."

Reyna, Korea

Reyna, Junior, Korea

"My experience in Korea has helped me grow and mature a lot. I have done things that I never thought I could do, like riding the subway alone. There are so many things that I’ve done here that I would have never thought of doing the states. I feel like I have become more independent and more responsible for myself. I feel very confident in what I can accomplish in the future."

"This program is amazing I have met so many people who are like me. I have always been curious about things that no one else is interested in. In this program I have met people who are also different and like it."

"This experience helped me grow as a person I feel way more confident in ordering food in ENGLISH. I feel like I am not afraid anymore, I am not afraid to go out and see new places. After coming back from Korea, I wanted to explore more."

"My time in Korea was so precious."

Robert, Spain

Robert, Senior, Spain

See Robert's experience through his eyes!

"I am constantly active in environmental events in Chicago, but I wanted to go out of my comfort zone and make a difference across the seas."

"As a Latino – American teenager who has experienced these injustices… I wanted to do my best for the kids of Villaverde and make a difference in their lives. Give them a reason to live and play outside, not resort to going home and scrolling through Instagram for hours…"

"With this amazing experience that my group had, we proved that teenagers are greater than what the older generations think. We are the future, and we are changing it for the better."

Thania, Japan

Thania, Senior, Japan

I have found a new interest in international business because of this program."

"The most rewarding aspect of my program was that I got to meet and form a relationship with people I would normally not interact with."

"As well as being able to live in Japan for a month, like if I was part of the Japanese society, I was able to learn more about my own culture based on the major differences that exist between the Japanese culture and my Mexican-American culture."

"I learned that I’m an independent person; capable of being on my own without my parents’ supervision."

Ximena, Brazil

Ximena, Senior, Brazil

One of the most rewarding parts of my program was the slight culture shock that I encountered."

"After falling in love with the people and culture, we trekked through the Amazon, swam in the Rio Negro, and got to see and touch wildlife I felt like at home."

"Nature has always been a second home to me and being at a place where I surrounded by wildlife and fresh air transformed me. Because I got to see such beautiful sights and truly understand the importance of the Amazon, I have been recently saddened by the fires that have started there."

"This trip holds a special place in my heart."