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UW to Host National Science Camp

March 14, 2011
Two men
NASA Astronauts Michael Foale, left, and Bernard Harris, right, traveling in space. ExxonMobil Foundation and Harris, the first African-American to walk in space, are providing middle school youths with a fun, engaging math and science experience this summer at no cost to students. (NASA Images)

Veteran astronaut Bernard A. Harris Jr. and ExxonMobil Foundation have partnered with the University of Wyoming to increase math and science interest among youths with a two-week science camp open to all middle school students.

UW received an $80,000 grant from ExxonMobil Foundation and Harris to support the ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Summer Science Camp June 19-28. Students who will be entering sixth, seventh, or eighth grade this fall and reside in Wyoming, western Nebraska, northern Colorado or western South Dakota are encouraged to apply. Participants from previous camps are not eligible to apply.

This is UW's second year to host the prestigious programs. The university is one of 25 sites nationwide to host the all-expenses-paid camps.

Interested students will need recommendations from their current math and science teachers, a 250-word essay plus high standardized test scores and academic grades.

Campers will attend daily classes in the natural sciences, engineering, mathematics and technology taught by UW faculty members and secondary classroom teachers, who receive professional development training. Activities include classroom study, experiments, individual, team and group projects, weekly field excursions and motivational guest speakers.

"We are proud to sponsor the ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Summer Science Camps as they provide great building blocks to inspire students today to pursue math and science-based careers essential to solving the problems of the future," says Suzanne McCarron, ExxonMobil Foundation president. "Engaging them in middle school is critical in order to capture their interests as they begin to plan for high school and beyond."

Harris is best known for his historic contributions to science as the first African-American astronaut to walk in space and a NASA researcher. Harris today dedicates himself to education initiatives that empower students to increase their science, technology, engineering and math skills through his organization -- the Harris Foundation.

UW's "Journey to the Stars," Summer Science Camp application is available online at For applications, program requirements and other information, contact the UW Department of Physics and Astronomy at (307)766-2862 or e-mail

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