Middle school students from across north Mississippi are invited to sign up for a series of science, technology, engineering and math-related day camps that will give them a window into the life of a scientist who studies the ocean, an unusual treat so far from the coast.
The Seafloor Science Remotely Operated Vehicle Camp, or SSROV Camp, allows students in sixth through eighth grades to follow in the steps of an oceanographer doing research aboard a ship. Throughout the week, the students get hands-on opportunities to learn about technology, including programming circuit boards, building and operating underwater robots, and navigating underwater ecosystems.
The camps will be conducted in Oxford, Southaven and Tupelo in June and July. Registration is $200 and the camps are limited to 28 students per session, ensuring a low student-to-instructor ratio.
SSROV Camp was created by Geoff Wheat, director of the National Institute of Undersea Science and Technology, based at the University of Mississippi Field Station. Wheat is a geochemist and oceanographer who has been involved as a research scientist or chief scientist in hundreds of seagoing expeditions. The camp grew out of the classroom activities he would take to his kids’ schools in Monterey, California, and NIUST hosted the first Mississippi camp last year at the Field Station.
“The kids and their classmates enjoyed it so much that I expanded it into camp form, and it’s really taken off in California,” Wheat said. “We got such a good reaction at last year’s Mississippi camp in Oxford that we wanted to offer it to more kids. That’s why we have reached out to the Tupelo and Southaven communities this year to bring it to them, too.”
SSROV campers are immersed daily in a fun, problem-solving environment where they get to complete practical, real-world science projects and tasks. Activities are done in a team environment, so students also learn presentation skills and collaboration.
SSROV Camp runs from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily. This summer’s camp schedule includes:
June 8-12 – University of Mississippi at Tupelo
June 15-19 – University of Mississippi at Tupelo
July 6-10 – Desoto Central Middle School, Southaven
July 20-24 – UM Field Station
NIUST is a partnership between the University of Mississippi and the University of Southern Mississippi.
Courtesy UM Communications