September 2, 2014  

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Summer Naturalist Camps Gives Students a Chance to Work in Laboratories

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The Survivor Biology Camp is just one of several summer camps offered by The University of Southern Mississippi (submitted photo).

Students who enjoy science and nature will want to participate in the hands-on experience provided by University of Southern Mississippi summer camps set for this summer.

Titled “Survivor: Young Naturalist Camp,” the camps are scheduled for June 24 – 29, 2012 (rising 8th – 12th graders) and July 8 –13, 2012 (rising 4th – 7th graders). The summer program, which began in 2005, is sponsored by the Department of Biological Sciences. 

Survivor participants will engage in different activities focused on a wide variety of nature and science topics.  This will include forensic science, marine biology, aquatic ecology, wildlife biology and zoo education. 

Participants will also enjoy canoeing Black Creek, learning about marine ecology, hiking through the woods at the Lake Thoreau Environmental Center and going to the Hattiesburg Zoo. The academic program we will offer features interactive indoor and outdoor lab-based activities. The participants will directly interact with USM faculty, staff, graduate and undergraduate students.

“This is your chance to encourage your child who is interested in the natural sciences,” said Dr. Aimee Thomas, director of the Biological Sciences Learning Center.” They get to attend an exciting summer program where they will gain leadership skills, take part in friendly competition and get a head start on preparing for college.

Thomas notes that hosting camps of this nature are a productive way to keep students actively engaged in the scientific process during the summer months, while also increasing scientific literacy through informal biology education programs. Experimental learning is a key component of the week-long camp but collaborative group work is also encouraged.

 “This camp provides exposure to the resources and educational programming that occurs on the USM campus,” said Thomas. “By working with USM professors, staff, graduate and undergraduate students, participants learn what it takes to be successful in college. The Biological Sciences Department benefits by teaching future students about the research that we do here at USM.”

Register by April 30, 2012 to receive a $15 discount. The camp fee is $315, which includes room, board, T-shirt, recreational activities and limited accidental insurance.

To download an application visit http://www.usm.edu/biological-sciences/science-camp or contact Thomas via e-mail at aimee.thomas@usm.edu