Dept Banner
Dept Banner

Merck Summer Prep

Program Description:

The Summer Preparatory Program in chemistry and calculus involves intensive academic support during the summer prior to students' freshman year. The purpose of the program is to strengthen and articulate the foundation of course content necessary to excel in future "gatekeeper" courses within a science curriculum. This responds to the identified need to offer academic support in these areas, demonstrated by the difficulties experienced by past and current students participating in other support programs. Students who participate receive an introduction to chemistry and calculus course taught at a college pace. They gain invaluable classroom experience, thus obtaining the strengths needed to avoid performance failures once they are in college, particularly in science courses.

Program benefits include:

  • Free chemistry and calculus textbooks.
  • Two college credits upon successful completion of the program.
  • Housing at Nichols Apartments on the Busch Campus for the Summer 2016 program.
  • Site visits to various health professional schools, including Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, University of Pennsylvania Medical School, New Jersey Medical School, New York University Medical School, and Jefferson Medical School.
  • Experience the various campuses of New Brunswick, thus ensuring a smooth transition into college life upon entry in the fall. All facilities will be indicated, including dormitories, classroom buildings, library and multimedia services, dining halls, and transportation.
  • As an added bonus, students who participate in this program are automatically enrolled into the "OS" section of General Chemistry in the Fall term, wherein 18% of their final grade is generated from the work performed within the office.


You must be a freshman accepted to, and entering, Rutgers University-New Brunswick in the subsequent fall term. You must also have taken your Rutgers placement exams by May 31st and be placed into at least Calculus 135 and Expository Writing (355:101).


The program has been in existence for three years and the 60 previous participants have amassed a cumulative GPA of 3.2 or above. Additionally, each student has proceeded to pass General Chemistry 161 & 162. Currently, 12 of the original 20 students have a cumulative GPA over 3.5 and are scoring competitively on their MCATs.

An example application essay:

ODASIS Summer Program Essay

"Every year, new students join the ODASIS program at Rutgers University, bringing fresh perspective into the Sciences. I owe my introduction to the Office for Diversity and Academic Success in the Sciences to Dr. Khan, who explained that being part of this program would be the best decision I could ever make. After investigating your program, I understand that he is absolutely correct.

Also, I've heard Ms. Jesenia Cadena acknowledge this program and advocate, "Here at ODASIS we're all like a family." To me this close knit environment is one of the main reasons for my strong interest in joining ODASIS. My current high school also has that same atmosphere. High Tech High School's senior class consists of about one-hundred twenty students, and we have become very close the past four years. Lifelong friendships have formed, and I am so grateful that I was not lost in a sea of a student body of great numbers. ODASIS is the type of community that fosters a spirit of teamwork, and I know I would flourish as a part of this collaborative group. I've always been really close to my family. Now that I'm going away to college, I know the change will be difficult; however, by being a part of a program such as ODASIS were everyone feels at home, well that's something that isn't found just anywhere.

While the ODASIS program does not start until this fall, that doesn't mean I can't get a head start. While attending Rutgers' first Open House in April and then going to the ODASIS Open House May 31, I discovered that I could also be apart of a summer Chemistry Program offered through ODASIS. This program would allow me to do exactly what I love best- learning and growing as a scientist. Furthermore, I'm certain that ODASIS would also help me become a stronger student, and I'm sure to benefit from the educational support and all that it offers.

The benefits of being a part of this program are numerous. To begin I will be taking prep courses in subjects such as Chemistry, Calculus, and Expository Writing, all of which can be challenging for incoming freshmen. Moreover, I will be ready to tackle and successfully complete these college courses. Also, being able to take this summer course will allow me to use my time productively, and by doing so, help me get ready to take the necessary steps towards my future.

Additionally, the success that this program has had is simply astonishing. I've spoken to many of the students that were part of ODASIS on May 31; all said ODASIS was the best choice that they had made in college. The fact that so many students support and cherish this program is really a reason why I would like to be able to get a head start this summer. While I understand that college will encompass a challenging academic schedule, I feel that by being a part of this summer program and being able to get help from my mentors, my goals seem even more obtainable.

While some may envision a summer of hanging out at the park or jumping in the ocean waves, I hope to spend those hot days in the ODASIS summer program preparing for a successful future. After talking with Dr. Khan, Jesenia, Jon, and many others I am confident that ODASIS is the ideal program for me. If accepted I will always do my best, ask for help when needed, and help others when I can."

Click HERE for the 2016 Summer Prep Chem Application

For more information, please contact Mr. Jon Langowski at 848-445-7532 or email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Contact Us

Office for Diversity and Academic
Success in the Sciences

604 Allison Road
Nelson Labs Rm. A201
Piscataway, NJ 08854

P   (848) 445-6878
F   (732) 445-6879