NDSU Summer Camp Aims to Ignite Kids’ Passions Through STEM

more than 300 kids are in the camp

FARGO, N.D. — Hundreds of kids aren’t at the pool, playing video games or doing any other activities they normally do during the summer.

KVRR’s Danielle Church tells us how they’re continuing to stimulate their minds while also having fun.

Students are creating a buzz at NDSU, thanks to some help from a bunch of drones.

“We have programmed some code to make drones do front flips, back flips and now we’re flying through obstacle courses and maybe ducking on occasion,” said Mary Pearson, a “Drone Zone” teacher at the camp.

“You just use blocks together and arrange them in a way that you’d like. Then you can choose if ones go forward, do a forward flip or a backward flip or a side flip,” said 8-year-old Elizabeth Herrick.

This is a camp offering them the chance to learn about every part of the STEM industry, from crime scene science to robotics.

“It’s called Vex Robotics and so they’re going to learn how to build and design their own robots and then code them to run on their own. You’d be surprised at how quickly they pick it up,” said Eric Hall, a robotics teacher at the camp.

These kids are so advanced on the first day, they’re already starting to question whether their parents can handle it.

“Ehh no. Not really,” Herrick and 9-year-old Liam Johnson said.

In fact, some are already planning for the future.

“Actually one of the kids told me he’s using this for his resume for Lego League so he learned a new way to code and program,” Pearson said.

It’s not just STEM skills these kids are picking up along the way though.

“I think the big thing from this class that they can take is they have a challenge, so they have to come up with ways to problem solve and work together in a team and more than anything, that skill is really what they can transfer anywhere else they want to go,” Hall said.

That especially holds true when they are able to bring in some creativity.

“Allowing them to have creativity and a venue to practice their creativity is a great place to encourage them to learn and keep learning and grow that curiosity in really any field,” Pearson said.

The camp runs through Thursday for kindergarten through eighth graders.

It will pick up again next week Monday through Thursday.

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