STEM Center News

Future Miners Learn On Campus and On Screen

Members of Team Dragon prepare to launch their Flugtag during the flight portion of the competition. They won 1st place in the Jackling Intro to Engineering Flugtag competition sponsored by Oxy.

The past two summers have not been typical, but Missouri S&T’s “future miners” are anything but typical students. In 2020, summer camps had to quickly transition from in-person to virtual formats in a matter of weeks. However, in 2021, with many COVID-19 social restrictions still in place, summer camps transformed again into a hybrid learning environment where campers learned about how our Miners Dig Deeper, while still having fun, making new friends, and getting to know our beautiful Rolla campus.

“Flexibility is a must-have skill in today’s educational system,” said Courtney Jones, Founding Director of the new Kummer STEM Center at S&T. “We were excited to hit the ground running in July with our new K-12 learning center, where we got to witness first-hand how future miners adapted quickly, learned complex STEM subjects, and had fun, too.”

Art of Science, a new camp in 2021, took campers out to the Missouri Ozarks, where S&T’s Field Station is located on a lovely site that had campers interested, inspired and inquisitive about biological sciences. From beetles to butterflies and kayaking to campfire kilns, this creative camp taught scientific concepts with a creative twist and ended the week with an art show in the Havener Atrium.

Jackling Intro to Engineering, S&T’s longest running and most popular summer camp, met campers on campus, as well as across computer screens. Exploring more than a dozen engineering programs, campers were able to build, experience and explore some of STEM’s highest-paid career options. Have you ever built and launched a Flugtag? You would if you had come to Intro camp!

Epic Storytelling and Magic of Digital Art were two additional new camps in 2021 and both welcomed virtual campers to Rolla, Missouri where they joined S&T instructors and fellow campers across the nation. Through storytelling and creative projects, these campers learned how to express their imaginations in all kinds of online ways. Embracing the arts is another way that future miners can enjoy our well-rounded campus offerings (and have a whole lot of fun, too). 

Of course, we could not do what we do if it wasn’t for generous donations from organizations like Nucor, Trekk, GE, Radiac, Design Group, Student Diversity Initiatives, and our newest sponsor Occidental Petroleum (Oxy). We are grateful for our collaborating industry partners, who continue to invest in our next generation STEM professionals. Providing scholarships, funding for camps and contributing to the cost of program supplies are just the beginning of how our donors make the future brighter for our K12 youth.

What should you expect from Summer 2022 Summer Camps? More STEM-focused camps, as well as time-honored camps that have become a commonplace for many of our S&T students and alums. Since summer camps are now under the Teacher Education and Certification umbrella, you can bet that campers will continue to have exceptional summer camp experiences, have access to individual scholarships, and embrace the diversity that makes our campus an innovative and inspiring place to visit and experience anytime.