High Point University student, Courtney Loux, helps out children from The Point Prep and Leadership Academy build solar ovens on the first day of HPU’s Annual STEM camp.
HIGH POINT, N.C. June 22, 2021–Rockets are preparing to launch as High Point University students host an exciting week of STEM camp for local children. This year’s camp, hosted at The Point Prep and Leadership Academy, began on June 21. The week is filled with a variety of activities and concludes on Friday with a launch of the rockets the students are building.
HPU’s Stout School of Education graduate students are excited to return in-person for this year’s camp, and so are local children who are participating.
“I’m really excited to be back in-person because I can do the experiments again,” says 11-year-old Marlin Carson. This is his third year coming to HPU’s Annual STEM Camp.
More than 100 students from the school between kindergarten and sixth grade are learning more about science, technology, engineering and math. Already, camp participants have tested their engineering skills by building a solar oven to cook a summertime favorite, s’mores.
Camp activities include building solar ovens, robotics and rockets. The theme this year is “Building STEM Leaders for Tomorrow’s Workforce.”
Dr. Shirley Disseler is the STEM camp coordinator and associate professor in the Stout School of Education at HPU. She says the 30 HPU students involved in the camp are using this as a clinical course in their program. They’re planning and designing the activities, as well as taking the lead all week.
“HPU’s summer camps have always been the highlight of many children’s summer experiences,” says Disseler. “With COVID-19, we had to move to a virtual format, but this year we were given the privilege to work with the Congdon Family to do an in-person camp at the Point Prep and Leadership Academy.”
HPU students are already gaining valuable skills as educators while appreciating the opportunity to work with children from the community.
“Honestly just seeing the progression from the start of camp to the end is always rewarding,” says Courtney Loux, HPU Class of 2021 special education graduate. “Their brains are starting to think, ‘Okay what’s going to happen and how is this going to work?’ And now they’re actually going to be able to see their progress.”
“I’m excited because we actually have the opportunity to do these activities in class,” says master’s student Tyquel Davis. “As an adult, it’s fun for me and it’s something I’ve never done before. I think for the students that are here at the camp, they’ll be excited as well to do something they’ve never done before.”
The camp will culminate Friday with the highly anticipated rocket launch that the campers started working on Monday. Take-off is set for 12:30 p.m.