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Summer youth camps open for registration

By Pam Starling

University of Mississippi

Dreaming of warm days in the Grove is a great way to pass the cold winter months. The University of Mississippi Office of Pre-College programs has an offer to make this dream a reality as registration opens for the summer schedule of camps for students in kindergarten through 12th grades.

The list of classes includes several new courses and more available seats as well as a special offer for gift-giving this holiday season.

“We had such a great response to this past summer’s offerings that we wanted to open up more spots for students and expand even more on the variety of classes for next summer,” said Ellen Shelton, UM executive director of pre-college programs.

Registration is open for more than 25 summer programs offered to K-12 students beginning in late May 2017 on campus. There are monthlong, two-week and one-week camps to choose from. Some programs also offer options for students to stay on campus overnight or commute each day from home.

New camps in the lineup for summer 2017 include the “Code Monkey” crash course in computer code writing and programming. Offered for rising 10th-, 11th- and 12th-graders, the camp will take place June 25-30 on the Oxford campus.

A new Shakespeare camp is set for June 11-16 that will help high school students learn five different ways to examine Shakespeare’s works in five days. The class will include an excursion to Memphis to attend the Tennessee Shakespeare Company’s performance of “The Comedy of Errors.”

Also new this year is a culinary arts camp that will be offered July 16-21 for middle school students and July 23-28 for high school students.

Program staff anticipate this class will fill up quickly, said Ari Lugo, UM pre-college counselor.

“We think Mississippi, and Oxford in particular, have such a unique culinary scene that students will enjoy learning more about,” Lugo said.

Students will have an opportunity to try out their cooking skills and learn about working with locally-grown food sources.

The popular Rebel Quest day camp has expanded for next summer to include a section for rising first- and second-graders, another section for rising third- and fourth-graders, and a third section for rising fifth- and sixth-graders.

The summer 2017 weeklong themes include “Mad Scientist Week,” “Gamer Week” and “All About Art Week,” among several others.

For high school students looking to get a head start on college, UM’s Summer College for High School Students and Jumpstart programs are taking applications.

These camps allow students to come to campus for one month over the summer and get a head start on college courses. Students can receive college credit in one of the numerous academic tracks available, including computer science, engineering, health professions, pre-pharmacy, journalism, integrated marketing communications, intelligence and security studies, legal studies, liberal arts or one of numerous intensive foreign language programs.

UM Summer Academy is a two-week academic program designed to provide U.S. and international rising ninth, 10th-, 11th- and 12th-graders an opportunity to have a glimpse into college life for two weeks during the summer. During their stay on campus, students take one of the different classes offered in fields such as ACT/ SAT exam preparation, debate, engineering, arts, or literature and earn a one-half Carnegie high school credit.

There are also one-week academic camps available for middle and high school students looking to learn something new this summer. Those include CSI, creative writing, ecology, intelligence studies, math, theater and several others.

“We know that students can be very busy in the summer months and may not have a full month to dedicate to a program,” Shelton said. “These various shorter camp options allow students to have an engaging academic experience and explore the Ole Miss campus with a smaller time commitment.”

If you are looking for a unique gift for a student in your life, the UM Office of Pre-College programs has special gift certificates available that would be great for this holiday season.

“Giving the gift of a learning experience is something children and teenagers will keep with them always,” Lugo said. “And by making a summer camp opportunity available to a student in any grade from kindergarten to a senior in high school, you may be opening up a door to their future. Who knows how a summer camp program might pique their interest in a particular field or future career.”