In Philadelphia, winter has just begun unleashing its snowy might. Yet it’s right around this time of year that many parents and children begin thinking about warmer days ahead. Summer camp enrollment has commenced, and Penn offers dozens of choices for school-age children to enrich their summers through art, business, science, athletics, and many other creative and academic endeavors.
For example, at the Penn Museum, Jennifer Reifsteck directs the “Anthropologists in the Making” summer camp, which has been running for nearly 20 years. The camp runs for eight one-week sessions, June 29-Aug. 21, with each week having a different theme. Professors and archaeologists from the Museum as well as musical guests will take campers behind the scenes and immerse them in the cultures they are studying.
“Our themes highlight our collections, from Ancient Egypt, to the classical world, to ancient architecture and celebrations,” Reifsteck says. “We change up our offerings every year so our ‘fan base’ always has something new to learn.”
For the athletically inclined, Penn’s varsity coaches oversee camps that give students a chance to train on campus to prepare for their upcoming seasons in track, football, fencing, field hockey, swimming, basketball, baseball, and more.
Penn’s camps prove that education can continue even when school’s not in session. At the Canine Handler Academy, run by the School of Veterinary Medicine’s Working Dog Center, for instance, attendees “learn about how dogs learn,” says Lauren McTiernan, who is directing the camp for the third year.
Tailored to seventh, eighth, and ninth graders, the Academy offers two beginner sessions that will cover the basics of working dog research and handling, and two advanced sessions for students who previously attended. Scholarships are available, provided by returning sponsor Zoetis. McTiernan says the Academy tends to attract “a huge mixture” of students.
“Some just love dogs and want to know more about them, some are interested in becoming a police officer and working as a K-9 unit, and we’ve also had students who want to be vets.”
For those campers hoping to delve into the physical sciences, Penn GEMS—Girls in Engineering, Math and Science—is a perennial favorite. This week-long day camp, held July 27-31, provides hands-on engineering experience for local middle school girls. Delving into bioengineering, nanotechnology, materials science, graphics, and computing, GEMS teaches participants how engineers and scientists improve people’s lives. A robotics-only track is also available.
For more information about these and other camps at Penn, including fees and application deadlines, visit the Almanac.