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New summer programs allow kids to explore multiple interest areas

Credit: Delaware Valley University. A KidsU! participant learns about STEM software by building a LEGO robot.

Jul 24, 2015

Delaware Valley University is arming local youth with knowledge and practical experience by offering new, educational camps. In July, the University launched Kids U!, a summer camp program that provides instruction and experience for area youth while giving them a chance to be part of a university environment. The program allows participants to get a taste of different fields through hands-on activities.

“We are very excited to launch Kids U!, a program offering one-week specialty camps where kids can collaborate and learn with seasoned faculty, educators and industry professionals,” said Barrie Saias, DelVal’s youth summer programming coordinator. “Children and teens are having a blast spending time working in our classrooms, exploring our labs and doing fieldwork. They are doing everything from extracting DNA, to using software to program robots, to building a business. They are having fun and being challenged while exploring multiple interest areas. This is summer enrichment at its best!”

Kids U! at Delaware Valley University launched its inaugural camp season July 6 with a program called “Day In The Life.” Campers spent the week participating in classroom, lab and fieldwork on campus exploring topics including: anatomy and physiology, farms and dairy facilities, biology and genetics, veterinary medicine, wildlife conservation and food science.

During the week of July 13, campers participated in LEGO WeDo, which focuses on the principles of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). Campers constructed, altered, enhanced and manipulated various robotics projects through an interdisciplinary program focused on developing problem solving skills.

From July 13 to 17 and July 20 to 24, two horse riding camps were offered at DelVal’s Equestrian Center. Campers participated in riding lessons as well as workshops covering topics such as: polo wrapping, tack cleaning, grooming, first aid, course design, stable work and nutrition. 

During July 20 to 24, the NASTAR program focused on the fascinating worlds of aviation and space. Campers engaged in interactive projects designed to reinforce state standards for STEM education. They explored Newton’s Laws of Motion and learned how they relate to aircraft and spacecraft. They researched, assembled, tested, and flew rockets, gliders, parachutes, planes and more.

The season wraps up with “CEO Kids,” which runs July 27 to 31. The program prepares campers for more than just “having the biggest and best lemonade stand on the block.” Campers are encouraged to explore their creative talents and business skills and put them to the test. Participants design and market a mock product they think will be the “next big thing.” Using fun, everyday items, they test the limits of the imagination to develop innovative products. The program encourages campers to consider becoming entrepreneurs. They learn about product development, innovation, production, budgeting, sales, marketing, and promotions, while collaborating with a project manager and team.

“This launch of Kids U! illustrates Delaware Valley University’s commitment to the children in our community by enriching their summers with fun and academically-focused programs,” said Yolonda Udvardy, interim director of the Office of Continuing and Professional Studies. 

“As DelVal embraces its new status as a university, the institution is expanding programs that open up its resources to the local community,” said Dr. James Moryan, dean of the School of Graduate and Professional Studies. “This is another opportunity for the University to embrace developing partnerships with our area neighbors.”