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USM’s Karnes Center Announces Summer 2024 Programming

Tue, 04/16/2024 - 03:24pm | By: David Tisdale

The Frances A. Karnes Center for Gifted Studies at The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) will again host summer programming on its Hattiesburg campus throughout June. This year, the Center’s staff encourages students to “carry the torch” and run their educational race with perseverance, as each program is designed to engage students with the potential to change their world in positive ways.

“We invite gifted, talented, and high-ability students to make the beautiful USM Hattiesburg Campus their home this summer as they explore new ideas, make new friends, and expand their horizons,’ said Karnes Center Director Dr. Heather Houston. 

Programming details are as follow:

DAY PROGRAMS: 8:30 a.m. – Noon

  • Young Gifted Students*: Grades PK-3, June 10-14       
  • Summer In the Middle (SIM)*: Grades 4-6, June 10-14


  • Summer Gifted Studies*: Grades 4-8, June 17-22
  • Leadership Studies**: Grades 6-11, June 24-29
  • Summer Program for Academically or Artistically Talented Youth (SPAATY)† June 17-29

Eligibility for these programs is based on IQ or Nationally Normed Achievement Test Scores at or above the 90th percentile; Leadership Studies is open to all students who are interested in shaping their community and write an essay explaining their goals.

† SPAATY is open to students who have scored at the 90th percentile on nationally normed tests of academic ability or in ranges on the ACT or SAT commensurate with those appropriate for collegiate studies.

Tuition costs for day programs include all materials and limited accident insurance. Tuition costs for residential programs include room, board, recreational and cultural activities, and limited accident insurance. Need-based financial aid is available for residential programs on a limited basis. USM affiliated families and military affiliated families are also encouraged to apply.

The application deadline for these programs is April 25. For additional information, call 601.266.5236, or e-mail giftedstudiesFREEMississippi. Course descriptions and applications are available at