A typical day during math camp

Now that five weeks of UPenn’s six-week math camp are over, I’ve managed to settle into a sort of weekly rhythm. For those of you who are looking into doing PhDs or are gearing up for your own respective math camps, I thought I would share my experience so you have an idea of what to expect.

Most weeks feature four hours of class every day between Monday and Thursday, followed by a two-hour quiz on Friday. My typical daily schedule is as follows.

Monday – Thursday:

8:15 am – 10 : Study

10 am – 12 noon : Class

12 - 1230 : Eat lunch

1230 - 130 : Study

130 - 330 : Class

330 - 430ish : BREAK. By this point in the afternoon my brain is usually pretty fried, so I can’t start studying immediately. I usually just take a walk during this time. Occasionally I indulge in a donut…

430 – 7 : Study

7-11 pm : Some combination of cooking, eating dinner, studying and sometimes going to the gym.


After the quiz on Friday, I take the afternoon off to do something fun. Usually I play basketball. Then, the weekend is not usually very intense. I probably study a combined 10-12 hours between Saturday and Sunday. While they cover a lot of material in math camp, I haven’t been inclined to go overkill and study 24/7.  I have an entire year of studying ahead of me, so I’m steeling myself for a marathon rather than trying to win a sprint through math camp.