RAPID CITY, S.D. (March 7, 2013) - A refocused summer camp program at the School of Mines will offer high school students a more immersive experience in areas such as mining, metallurgy, geology, chemical and biological engineering, paleontology, robotics, power, and civil and environmental engineering.
The camps are already attracting exceptional students from coast to coast. In addition to the Black Hills region, summer camp students will travel from California and New Jersey and a number of states in between, including Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nebraska, Texas, Wyoming and Montana. Registrations remain open.
Department heads and faculty members will guide participants through in-depth camps offering field trips and other hands-on opportunities, including team-building projects aimed at helping students shape their future professional successes.
Each week-long camp is capped at 16 students to help ensure quality one-on-one time with university professors who will shepherd teens through the pre-college experience. If a camp fills, a second session may be offered. In previous years, each camp was open to as many as 30 teens and were led by college students.
"We limited the number because one of the things that we really do want to market is that they are getting that one-on-one time with the professor," said Shawna Hall, Youth Programs program and curricula developer.
"Our students will be getting access to state-of-the-art facilities, such as the paleo lab, and our professors are the top in their fields. Participants won't have access to this in any other camp. We wanted to focus on our niche. I've never seen another mining camp or paleontology camp as extensive as ours, for example," Hall said. "Campers are all going into the field. There will be no PowerPoints. We really want them to be able to get their hands dirty." Mining camp students will travel to an active mine in Wyoming, for instance; geology students will camp in the Badlands and Black Hills; and paleontology students will dig in Wyoming.
The resumes of those who have already registered are impressive. Among them: one student who studied the Late Eocene ecosystem of the Green River formation during a week-long course offered by Chicago's Field Museum; one student who spent several days in the field mapping Wyoming faults; and one who built a wind generator out of a treadmill motor. But there are just as many who expressed simply a long-held interest in a particular topic. One parent wrote on the application that her son "for the past 11 years has expressed an interest in being a geologist; we are hopeful that this camp will give him the exposure to confirm his passing and encourage him." One applicant wrote that he never outgrew his "dinosaur phase" and instead his interests "grew to include birds and extinct mammals, primitive sea plants and some extinct non-dinosaurian reptile and synapsid groups." At least two are Eagle Scouts.
Academic and financial need scholarships are available.
2013 summer camps and dates
- Geology Rocks! Youth Field Camp in the Black Hills - June 9-14
- Robotics Camp: Like You Won't Find Anywhere Else! - June 21-26
- Fossils: The path of the paleontologist - June 23-28
- Mining & Explosives Engineering Institute - June 23-28
- EARTHWISE: Civil & Environmental Engineers - June 23-28
- Power Camp: Hands On - July 7-12
- Metallurgy & Forensics Institute - July 14-19
- Chemical & Biological Engineering Institute - July 21-26
Learn more about summer camps or register: