What Parents Say About ATS

This was our first time participating....

Academic studies are very important....

I loved that my daughter had the opportunity....

ATS has been an amazing experience....

I expected the classes to remove the "boring" perception....

Thank you for the opportunity....

My son took a couple of classes....

I am very impressed with the ATS program.

What I liked about ATS is....

This was [my daughter]'s first year....

My son had a great time attending....

I wanted to take a few minutes to tell you....

I want to say a HUGE thank you....

This was our first time participating in ATS and we would absolutely do it again. Being able to bring my son...to a college campus was invaluable. It helped him think long term and gave him a sense of what to strive for. He took Engineering Simulations and loved the teacher and the atmosphere. He was able to use geometry, algebra and work in a team by building a mall. These were new activities that challenged him and allowed him to be creative. Our last day of class he told me he was going to miss coming to Sac State and his class.

ATS Parent

Academic studies are very important to my husband and I who both attended CSUS for Bachelors and Masters degrees. We want to impress that importance on our sons...so enrolled them in the ATS program this year and last year. It was exciting for us to see how the campus has changed since we attended many years ago and to be able to share that with our boys. We were very happy with the variety of courses that were offered and our boys both enjoyed their classes. ATS gave them the opportunity to gain valuable skills they might not otherwise learn during the normal school year and allowed them to explore the Student Union and Hornet Bookstore. Thank you for such a worthwhile program!

Mary and Patrick

I loved that my daughter had the opportunity to spend time on a college campus and absorb the vibe of higher education! The experience of being on her own for the lunch break and being responsible for getting to her afternoon session was very positive for her self-confidence. We loved visiting the Arboretum on campus after the school day was done. My daughter loved going to the campus bookstore—again the ‘college vibe’ was inspiring for her! The material covered in class was enriching to her regular school-year work. My daughter is excited to have an official Sac State ID and grade transcript! Thanks for this wonderful program.

ATS Parent

ATS has been an amazing experience for my son who took 2 classes, Stop Motion and Engineering.  He has been telling everyone about his time on campus.  The university setting boosted his confidence and sparked some interest in future learning.  He had the opportunity to practice independence on campus that felt safe. There is security and easy to find staff that is available to assist if needed.  After visiting the main campus, he started to talk about college vs. university, what degrees he could earn, should he attend CSU, Sacramento, and he noticed they had an engineering building.  It started a dialog about post high school education….As a parent, I'm pleased to see my son excited about an educational experience.  He has been challenged and encouraged by the teachers.  This experience has been a very positive one that he will never forget.


I expected the classes to remove the "boring" perception often associated with math and other academic studies in general. With the ATS classes, [my daughter] is now motivated to work on maths and other subjects without inhibition as from a negative "boring" perception. The Study Skills class helped her get an early understanding of the academic procedural and planning she will encounter in the years ahead.

ATS Parent

Thank you for the opportunity to participate in the ATS program. The instructors were knowledgeable and made learning fun. My daughter loves writing but can’t seem to find other kids who are as passionate about it as her. The Creative Writing course gave her the chance to meet others who share her interests. It was a very positive experience for her. She does not feel weird about wanting to be a writer anymore. We’re looking forward to doing ATS again next summer.


We enjoyed visiting the Student Union, the library, and the Hornet Bookstore. My son was very impressed with the high tech computers and the science class. He is looking forward to taking more classes next year and I am looking forward to visiting The Well again as an alumni. Thank you for providing such a positive experience for my son.


I am very impressed with the ATS program. My son is 13 and excitedly planning his path to college. The experience has connected the dots for us regarding how exactly my son can turn his strengths and talents into a career.

ATS Parent

What I liked about ATS is that [my son] got exposed to a lot of new and interesting topics, things he would never have encountered in school. Subjects like architecture, engineering, cell biology, Greek Mythology, and Algebra were taught in a fun, novel way. I think that [he] learned a lot of new skills in problem-solving and factual information.

Some of the perks to being at Sac State are that [my son] got exposed to a college campus as a child. It’s a very beautiful campus. He really enjoyed feeling like he was a college student! The university setting really did contribute to [his] self-esteem and independence. He took 5 classes, a half day for the 5 weeks. He understood that he had to get himself up to and down from his class out to the parking lot, as a child among university students.

[My son] is hearing impaired—he has worn a hearing aid since kindergarten. He didn’t have any problems hearing the instructors in the classrooms. It really boosted his confidence to be able to do these classes.

I was happy [my son] could learn new things and prevent the ‘summer slide’ of knowledge you hear about. The classes were so well done that they didn’t feel like school. He had a great time! We will definitely be back next summer!


This was [my daughter]'s first year with ATS and she thoroughly enjoyed it. She took Engineering & Architecture. This class inspired her to consider Civil Engineering as a future career. The teacher was very knowledgeable and made the class very interesting. The hands-on activities engaged the students' attention and interest.

Being in the Sac State university environment was a great experience for my daughter as she was able to see the different faculties, which motivated her to consider higher education. We both enjoyed the lovely green environment.


My son had a great time attending the ATS summer program for the first time this year. There are so many interesting classes offered at ATS and my son had a hard time choosing what to try. He attended two 4th/5th grade classes, Engineering Roller Coasters and Solar Energy and enjoyed both of them. He has been interested in Engineering and this program gave him a glimpse into what it is like. We are happy for him to have an opportunity to gain experience that is not offered at local school. He is looking forward to take some more classes next year.

This was also a first time for my son to visit Sac State campus. It was nice to walk around the campus exploring bookstore, student union and campus grounds. Although I have to admit that the commute was longer than we are used to, it is definitely a worthwhile experience to take classes at the University. My son was curious about various amenities the university offers. He was able to experience taking classes with students from various schools. It really help him realize the education beyond elementary school years and gave him a sense of what is ahead in the future.

Thank you for the great opportunity!


I wanted to take a few minutes to tell you what a positive experience the ATS courses were for my son. My son...took two classes: Lego Robotics and Solving Mysteries with Science. Although he is very bright and gets excellent grades, he's not very enthusiastic about school. Therefore, I anticipated we would have to battle him every morning to get to class. I am pleased to report that I was wrong. After the first day of each class, my son came home buzzing about what he learned. He loved the Robotics class because it was very hands on. He said that the students had to figure things out for themselves. He liked the challenge. On one day, they had to build a catapult. He talked about how his group kept changing the angle until they got their catapult to shoot an object five feet. They succeeded through the process of trial and error.

Although I suspected he would love his Robotics class, what surprised me more was how much he loved his Solving Mysteries with Science class. He came home from the first day to inform me that his classroom had been turned into a crime scene! His exact words were "Mom, they outdid themselves. It must have taken hours!" He talked endlessly about the "evidence" they collected and the scientific experiments they conducted each day. A friend of his sent him a text from Hawaii and asked what he was doing and my son replied "I'm solving a murder!"

Overall, it was a very positive experience for my son and I was pleased to see him get excited about learning. Although it was extremely difficult to coordinate transportation for him, we will definitely enroll him in some classes next year. In fact, I am spreading the word about this wonderful program. Thank you!


I want to say a HUGE thank you to all of the folks involved in putting together this wonderful program. This summer is my daughter’s second year with the program and unfortunately, she will be too old next year to continue (she is going into 10th grade this fall). We are both sad to see her time with this program come to an end.

I got to see this program in its early stages, while I was a student at CSUS and worked in food service in the University Union. My co-workers and I commented a number of times, “Who are the rug rats that have taken over our campus?” Once I learned about the program, I thought it was something quite interesting. Consequently, when my daughter, Katie, initially brought up participating in the program, I told her that it was something I thought would be good to investigate. She was quite surprised, as we live in Vacaville and knew that it was some distance to the campus. The program has grown quite a bit since I was a student here, and my husband (also CSUS alumni) and I were impressed. I have not worked outside the home since 2010 when I was laid off, so allowing Katie to attend involved a huge financial commitment. Last year, Katie took a course on Supreme Court cases, Forensic Chemistry and Beginning Web Design. At the time, she was considering law as a possible career. Interestingly enough, it was the Beginning Web Design class that caught her attention and was something she did in her “spare time” during the school year. This year, she took a beginning class in computer animation, beginning Latin and an advanced web design class.

I would highly recommend this program to other parents for the following reasons: Classes are generally offered by the traditional schools. Many of these classes provide an insight into careers in specific fields. For a number of years, my daughter had her heart set on becoming a lawyer. After the classes last year, she realized that though she has an interest in the field, it’s not something she wants to do for the rest of her life. The web design class last year was not on her priority list; however, after taking that class and the two classes this year, she has now decided to focus on working in the programming world.

Being on the CSUS campus gives the students an opportunity to check out college life and a chance to be independent. My oldest child was not able to participate in ATS, and his first few months away at school were overwhelming for him. One of the biggest challenges was just getting used classes being in different locations on a much larger campus, and taking responsibility for getting meals, arriving to class on time, and being in a significantly larger population. Through ATS, my daughter learned to navigate the campus, ask for directions when lost, and to be responsible for getting to class prepared and on time. She even made friends with other students from different school districts. She now feels very comfortable on the CSUS campus and would like to return as a full-fledged college student in 2017. (Incidentally, while I was waiting for my daughter one day, I met a former ATS parent. One of her sons got his start in the computer world through ATS and is now working with several local professional groups in system design. He is also being recruited by the likes of MIT and I believe Stanford. She credits ATS with getting her son started in the field.)

The staff really takes care of the students. Instructors provide a syllabus, and many hold office hours, just as is done in college. Having a room in the middle of campus where students can go for help, to hang out or get information was also very nice. I appreciated the professionalism of the staff when dealing with parents, and the friendliness and helpful nature they showed with the students. The TAs are also wonderful when it comes to helping the students….CJ from the IT classes was especially knowledgeable in helping the students and making it fun.

In addition to providing knowledge about specific topics, my daughter’s confidence level and ability to take care of herself grew by leaps and bounds. In general, she is more confident when approaching people for information. Her skills in time management and working towards a longer-term goal have also increased significantly. She learned how to ask for assistance when she did not understand something. She is excited about attending “real college” in the not-so-distant future. I am very grateful for the growth I have seen in her.

Again, I would like to say thank you to all of the staff and people who put this program together. It is by far the best summer program we’ve ever encountered.