Join us for Summer Institute 2024 –
Unlikely Superheroes: Skills for Practicing Faith and Ethics in Tough Times. 

In-person Registration closes June 20, 2024.
Registration fee of $75.00 is waived if you register before May 31, 2024.

We will be utilizing the WHOVA Portal for events that we are streaming live. We will be streaming Morning Worship, Theme Speaker, Vespers and Opening Ceremonies, as well as a limited selection of our workshops and activities.

Young Adult Weekend Registration (ages 18–35) includes programming from Thursday evening through Saturday morning, 5 meals, and communal floor space to sleep in the Young Adult Wing.

New SI Attendees
We are glad to welcome you to CERSI. Before you register, prepare for a wonderful week:

    • Visit About Summer Institute to learn more about CERSI.
    • Check out the 2024 brochure and pick out your Morning Seminar (for adults) before you register.
    • Read about our Covid Protocols and Masking Guidelines.
    • Check out our FAQ below if you have questions.
    • Register for CERSI! You will need to fill out one registration form for each person who will be attending.

It may feel a little overwhelming, but know that first-time members of our community are offered lots of support. Resources will be available to make sure all your questions are answered.

Frequently Asked Questions About Attending and Registration

No.  We are unable to charge a discounted registration fee for “Partial Attendance.” Only Young Adults (age 18-35) have the option of attending from Thursday evening through Saturday. They are not given dorm rooms or beds and sleep in the lounge of the Young Adult wing. However, anyone is welcome to attend virtually for only the days they wish.

Yes! Registration for virtual attendance will open April 1 and the link will appear on this page.

Everyone has to register! This means, infants, children, youth, young adults, adults, part-time attendees, commuters, full-time and part-time staff – including theme speakers, workshop leaders, touch group leaders etc. Everyone attending CERSI must register!

We have two age groups for Children: Age 5 or younger, and Kindergarten – 6th grade.  Youth are participants who are entering 7th grade through recent 2024 graduates. Youth and children must attend with either a parent/guardian or a sponsor who is not their legal guardian.  (For all children and youth, you need to fill out additional paperwork, which will be emailed to you when you register.) Young Adults are adults ages 18 to 35 who wish to participate in the Young Adult Programming and/or room in the Young Adult wing.  Adults are everyone else.

Early registration opens March 1, 2024.  Several morning workshops have a limited number of spaces available – sign up right away to save your spot!  Several styles of dorm rooms have limited availability and they are all distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis.  Most importantly, if you sign up before May 31 we waive the $75 registration fee for the event.

Morning seminars are classes designed for adults and young adults to learn a new skill, get creative, move,  meditate, or contemplate a deep topic in the company of others who share a similar interest. They run Monday – Friday after the theme talk and you attend the same seminar the entire week as each day builds upon the day prior. Before registering, check out this year’s seminars in our 2024 Catalog. Seminars are filled on a first-come first-served basis. They are not required, but if you wish to participate in one you must select your seminar choice during the registration process. Youth and children attend Religious Education each morning and do not need to select a workshop.

We have 4 types of room available: Singles, Doubles, Double Suites, and Quad Suites (2 or 4 private bedrooms with a shared bathroom and living room). To select a Suite, you must fill all beds in the suite. You will be added to the suite waitlist once all members of your suite complete the following: Registration, Worshift Selection, and all paperwork needed for Children / Youth / Camperships. We will learn what suites are available in late June and will be able to confirm if you have received a suite at that time. We have a very limited number of suites available each year, so complete all your paperwork quickly if you want to be added to the waitlist

We will be in two large dorm buildings at PennWest California University.  Each dorm is divided into several floors, and the floors are each divided into 2 wings. The dorm wings each focus on one section of our community. Due to space limitations, we may not be able to guarantee your dorm wing, but we will do our best.  You and your family can select a wing that will help you have the best experience at CERSI.  See the registration form for descriptions.

No, but you can stay in the Youth Family Wing.  The Youth Wing is restricted to Youth who are entering 10th, 11th, & 12th grades or who are 2024 High School graduates, plus their parents/sponsors.  All youth staying in the dorm must have a sponsor who is also staying in the youth dorm.  (Parents and sponsors are not required to share the same room, but they must stay in the Youth Wing.) All adults staying in the youth dorm must agree to a Background Check.

Yes! When you make your room selection on your registration form, select “Double room with randomly assigned roommate” or “Suite with randomly assigned roommates” and we will find someone for you to share a room with. Please email [email protected] with any questions.

Yes! Your children or youth can sleep on the floor in your dorm room, provided all beds in the room or suite have been filled first. Please note that PennWest provides one key for each bed, so children or youth sleeping on the floor do not receive a key. Keys are required to access your dorm building, your dorm wing, and your room.

Yes! PennWest no longer offers to provide bedding and towels at a low cost. All registrants must bring bedding. The beds are sized Twin XL. We suggest a pillow, sheets and a light Blanket or sleeping bag. You will need to bring your own hand towels, bath towels, soap, shampoo and other toiletries. Check out our Suggested Packlist for a complete list of what you may want to bring.

If you are an adult over the age of 25 you may sponsor up to 2 youth or children for whom you are not a legal guardian.  The parent / legal guardian will need to 1) fill out the UUA permission forms emailed to them when they registered their child, and 2) Print, sign, and notarize a Child Temporary Guardian form / Youth Temporary Guardian form and mail it to the address in their confirmation email. Exception: Adults who are attending as Youth Group sponsors for their church may sponsor up to 5 children each.  

Frequently Asked Questions about Costs, Jobs & Scholarships

Costs vary by age, dorm room type, and meal plan. Visit the CERSI cost estimator for more info.

No, the deadline to submit workshops was October 30 but you can prepare for next year!  Applications typically open in September and close at the end of October. All workshop leaders are offered a campership to help offset the cost of attending SI for the week.

 Yes! Please find out more on the Work At SI Page. If you have a campership, you must know your Campership Title and Tier discount before you complete your online registration form. We will provide you with this information, with instructions to fill out the forms and background checks required of all CERSI Volunteer Staff. If you believe you have a campership and have not received this information, please contact us at [email protected].

YES! The Scholarship application deadline is May 31. See the scholarships page for detailed information and to apply online. You may submit one scholarship application per family.  Indicate in your application how many members of your household you are including on your application. After scholarship decisions are communicated you will be given an invoice with your adjusted amount. If you have questions please contact us at [email protected].

Absolutely! There is a section on the Registration Form where you can add a donation to the Scholarship Fund to your registration fees. These donations may be tax deductible, per IRS regulations – request a receipt if you would like one! Not registering? Donate here!

First, select your morning workshops and complete the online registration form. You will receive an email with additional instructions on making payment, signing up for workshifts, and filling out needed paperwork for parents and youth.  If you register and do not receive an email confirmation, please contact us at [email protected].

No. You can request an invoice for one or more registrants. Unless you are applying for a campership or a scholarship, a 50% deposit is due by May 31. The remainder of your fees are due at Registration on the first day of SI. Please note: If you have a campership or are applying for a scholarship, you do not have to pay a deposit.

If you cancel by May 31, 2024 you will be refunded the total amount of your registration. After May 31, Cancellation fees apply to cover administrative costs.  If you cancel between May 31, 2024–June 20, 2024, you will be refunded the total amount minus $50 per person. After June 20 all cancellations will be refunded the amount minus $100 per person.

Yes! Immediately upon registering you will get an email that explains your next steps. If you do not receive this email, we did not get your registration.  If you requested an invoice, you should receive it from the registration team within 3–5 business days. As summer institute approaches, First-Timers will receive an email from the first-timer liaison, and many registrants may be contacted by their workshop facilitator or coordinators of the activities they selected.  In early July, all registrants will receive an email confirming housing, workshops, programming, and final payment balances.  

While we will be meeting in person at PennWest, we are excited to offer this virtual offering for those who are not ready or able to meet in person.  We will be utilizing the WHOVA Portal for events that we are streaming live or will be available on demand until the end of July. We will be streaming Morning Worship, Theme Speaker, Vespers and Opening Ceremonies. Several workshops will be available as hybrid offerings, and there will be online-only CERSICLES groups as well. There will be opportunities for connections with people in person and online.

Questions About COVID-19

Read about our Covid Protocols and Masking Guidelines, which are designed to protect the most vulnerable of us.

Yes! Everyone 5 and over is required to be vaccinated. Currently boosters are not required. See our current COVID policy.

Masks will be required for events in the performance center, including opening and closing ceremonies, morning worship, evening vespers and the theme talk and in the convocation center. Decisions are still being made about masking policies in smaller groups. Please see the COVID protocols for current details.

A full refund is available to everyone for any reason through May 31. After May 31, we do incur some administrative fees – see full cancellation policy above.

Questions about the PennWest California Campus

Yes! The entire campus, indoors and out, is non-smoking.

Yes!  There will be a pub available in the evenings, but no alcohol is permitted outside the pub on the campus.

Yes! All dorms and dorm rooms have A/C.

Yes! Dorm rooms have private bathrooms and buildings have gender-neutral restrooms.

Yes! PennWest has a laundry facility in each dorm.  To use the laundry services, you will need to download the CleanPay Mobile app on your android or apple mobile device and pre-pay a minimum balance of $10.  Each load is $1.25 per load wash or dry and you must bring your own Laundry Detergent. No cash laundry services are available. Questions? Check out this CleanPay Mobile tutorial on Youtube.

Yes! The Gold Rush Dining Hall is accustomed to serving large groups of people with diverse dining needs. There is a station with non-dairy milks and gluten-free bread products, there are gluten free pastas available, and people with allergy needs can request that their meal be made by campus chefs.  This may require a wait, but the campus staff is available and happy to help.

Yes! There are paths into, out of, and in between all buildings that are stair-free and accessible to wheelchairs and mobility scooters. There will be regular golf cart routes during planned activity hours to drive people between buildings. Personal mobility scooters can be brought from home or rented in advance for the week. All buildings have elevators and first-floor dorm requests will be honored as space permits. Please reach out to [email protected] with any questions or requests for accommodations, or for information about renting a scooter for the week.

No, the river is off-limits from the campus. Privately-owned canoe and kayak companies can be found within a half-hour drive but any river activities are on your own and not part of SI programming or activities.

There will be water aerobics (ages 16+) and an open swim for all ages in the afternoons. Children 6 and under, regardless of swimming ability, must have a lifejacket. Signups for open swim will be required daily. There are tennis courts and gym facilities (ages 18+) that will be accessible to our group as well as volleyball games in the afternoon.