HONOLULU – With summer already in full swing, parents may be scrambling to find activities for to fill their children’s open schedules. Science Camps of America will once again hold two separate camp sessions on the Big Island for local teens entering grades 8 through 12 who have a passion for science. The camp launched last summer to provide opportunities for teenagers to get out and ‘do’ science rather than just reading about it in a textbook.
“It’s really exciting that Science Camps of America is starting to take off, and this is only our second summer,” said Michael Richards, camp founder and executive director. “We have teens registered for camp from Oahu, Big Island, Maui, Kauai and the mainland. We have a few spots open in both sessions and want to make sure local teens who love science know that Science Camps is out there if they are interested in attending.”
The camp home base will be at the Pahala Plantation Cottages in Ka’u. Campers will get the chance to explore the environmental diversity that the Big Island has to offer from beaches to rainforests and mountaintops. Some of the destinations include Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, ‘Imiloa Planetarium at UH Hilo, Mauna Kea Visitor Center, U.S.G.S. Mauna Loa Climate Observatory, Punalu’u Black Sand Beach and many more.
The first camp session, Land and Sea, will be held June 29 to July 8 and focus on volcanology, geology and oceanography. Campers will explore Hawaii’s unique flora and fauna and learn how events in the natural world affect every living creature, including humans.
The second session, Air and Space, will be held July 8 to 17 and focus on astronomy, climate and alternative energy. Campers will gain a better understanding of climate change and the creation and use of alternative energy to help curb global warming.
Richards sold his local software company in 2010 and tapped his former geology teacher, Dr. Floyd McCoy, to be the nonprofit’s director of education and help create the camp’s curriculum. McCoy, who grew up on the Big Island, is a professor of geology, geoscience and oceanography at Windward Community College. McCoy is a highly regarded scientist and educator and has appeared on specials for National Geographic, BBC, TLC, NBC and Discovery.
Late Registrations will be accepted up until one week before each session begins. To extend this experience to more local teens, Science Camps of America, a Hawaii-based 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation, offers a limited amount of financial aid and also welcomes contributions from the public to the Science Camp Scholarship Fund. To help out or to learn more about and register for Science Camps of America, visit ScienceCampsAmerica.com.