On an overcast morning this summer, Kristoffer Lee stood in a courtyard with 15 other students ready to become engineers.
They made planes with the principles of aerodynamics swimming in their heads. They crafted pistols for range and accuracy and put efficiency into practice in an assembly line.
Lee and his group are in middle school.
Their planes are made of foam, their marshmallow shooters out of plastic pipe, and their assembly line was used to compile water balloons. They’re interested, but inexperienced.
These and thousands of other students across West Virginia this summer learned how to become what they want or even what they want to become. They engineered, danced, dribbled, hypothesized and read in advance of a new school year on their way to college and careers.
And it’s like this every summer.
West Virginia University hosts hundreds of camps throughout the summer months across the state. They range from Energy Express helping young children pursue reading, 4-H camps that help children of all ages learn life skills and build community, and the Governor’s Honors Academy and Governor’s School for Math and Science that train students for science careers.
The University not only hosts the camps, but engages the help of faculty, staff and students to share their expertise by designing curriculum, organizing activities and teaching, and putting their hearts into their camps.
Science, technology, engineering and math are collectively a particular focus. The Health Science & Technology Academy has successfully led students into health industry careers in West Virginia, and a new crop of engineering camps like the one Lee attended are centered on interesting children early and building skills in engineering.
Other camps bring out other passions, such as the Summer Dance Academy, Keyboard Festival and Competition and a plethora of sports camps, including the National Youth Sports Program, which offers a sports experience at no cost to families.
So as the K-12 students of West Virginia find themselves in a new year, many are more prepared. They’ll have ideas about who they could be, and just may be more interested in getting there.
CONTACT: University Relations/News
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