Light the World! Summer Institute has welcomed over 270 high school age participants from over 30 states and 4 different countries since 2016. Our participants come from public school, private school, and home school environments. We’ve welcomed siblings and cousins, friends of CatholicU and those who are joining us for the first time. 

What do all of our participants have in common? They all have a desire to learn more about how the Christian life and the Catholic tradition can play a role in their lives in high school, college, and beyond. 

Our Participants:

  • Age: Light the World! is a summer institute for high school students who are rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors.
  • Student Leaders: We are looking for students who want to be leaders and achieve excellence in whatever they do.
  • Spiritual Maturity: We are looking for teenagers whose faith is important to them, and who want to know how it impacts their everyday lives beyond Mass and moments of prayer. Light the World! is housed within The School of Theology and Religious Studies which is based in the Roman Catholic tradition but it is open to all people of faith. 
  • Young People Discerning College Choices: We seek students who want a college experience where they will be challenged intellectually and spiritually.

Our application can be found here: https://cardinaladmissions.cua.edu/summer

Hear from some of our former participants about their experience:


LTW! was a great opportunity to encounter Christ through the adventures of our nation’s capital, while building relationships with other young Christians, relationships that I still hold to this day.
- Jane, LtW! ‘16

Light the World! helped me to form meaningful connections with others who were also passionate about living a Catholic life and discovering how faith interacts on the different paths God calls us to.
- Joseph, LtW! ‘18

Something I loved about Light The World is that it has impacted the way I open up and help my own community. I can now do this without being afraid of sharing my faith and religion and was able to learn how to see my faith in everything I do in my everyday life.
- Azucena, LtW! ‘19