Video by Innovate Kentucky.
LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 11, 2012) — Nearly 70 middle school students came to the University of Kentucky campus recently to participate in a week-long camp of hands-on projects in the subjects of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).
The See Blue STEM Camp was held June 11-15 at the College of Education, and offered students a peek into the world of STEM, including neurobiology, astronomy and the opportunity to work with LEGO robotics, building and programming their own robots. The projects also had real world applications, showing the students what a career in a STEM field might entail.
The camp was started in 2010 by Craig Schroeder, a teacher at Jessie Clark Middle School in Lexington. This was the first year the camp was open to students from all across Kentucky, thanks to a grant the Mathematics Clinic at UK received from the Kentucky Center for Mathematics.
"My goal would be for them to find something they really enjoy to be their career, something that they're passionate about," Schroeder said. "I know they have fun during this week, but hopefully they go back and say 'oh that was really exciting, I want to do more in that area.'"
Julian McIntyre, a Scott County Middle School student, is definitely one of those students.
"Engineering is probably the most interesting field there is, it's definitely something I can see myself doing," he said.
His classmate, Anna Moon, sees herself going into a science-related field.
"We had a class taught by Dr. Walcott, about energy and magnets, and it was just really cool."
Both students expressed that the camp gave them a different kind of learning experience they can't always get in their normal classrooms.
"I've been to other programs like this, and this one is definitely different," McIntyre said. "It actually gives you something to do and is really fun."
"I've learned so much just in the past few days, they teach us these awesome things and it's like wow! who knew?" Moon said, laughing.
Margaret Schroeder, assistant professor of math education in the UK Department of STEM Education, says collaboration at UK was key in making the camp a success.
"We were excited to be able to offer this program on UK's campus to a wide range of middle school students. The partnership between the College of Education, College of Engineering, and the P20 Innovation Lab allowed for students to experience STEM in a fun and exciting college atmosphere," she said.
For more information about the See Blue STEM Camp, or how a child can become involved next year, visit education.uky.edu/STEM/content/seebluestemcamp.
MEDIA CONTACT: Jenny Wells, (859) 257-5343; Jenny.Wells@uky.edu