Just about everything I post on GiftedAtlanta.com is local to the Atlanta area.
The one exception I make is the Appalachian Institute for Creative Learning, held for two weeks each summer on the campus of Warren Wilson College, just outside Asheville, North Carolina.
For years, I had been intrigued by AICL with its wide range of courses. Where many programs billing themselves as gifted camps are science and technology heavy, AICL offers classes in music, magic, philosophy, and Dungeons & Dragons, just to name a few of the dozens of courses for 2015.
Last summer, my kids went to AICL and loved it. And I loved it, too, because I’ve never been anywhere where children’s creativity and individuality were so honored.
Let’s face it: Gifted kids can be unusual and quirky. Too often in life, they are embarrassed by their differences. At AICL, their quirks aren’t ridiculed. They’re celebrated. AICL is a safe place where exceptional children can meet other kids like them — kids who think it’s cool to learn about medieval warfare, form a marching band, create a documentary, or build a house out of cardboard.
AICL is open to children ages 8 to 17, with day camp or residential options. Children need not be gifted identified by their school to attend. As the camp’s web site puts it, “[W]e call our campers motivated learners, figuring anyone who shows up to take biology, math, or art in July is motivated.”
The Morehouse School of Medicine is now accepting applications for its Vivien Thomas Summer Program, a biomedical science research apprenticeship for high-school students.
The eight-week program pairs students with faculty mentors from the school and allows the students to work in biomedical research labs.
The program’s overarching mission is to increase the number of minority students interested in biomedical science.
The application period will close April 18, 2015.
Exceptional seventh grade students are invited to apply for the Caroline D. Bradley Scholarship, a merit-based scholarship that pays high-school tuition.
Students who are selected as CDB Scholars are notified in the fall of their 8th grade year. The Institute for Educational Advancement guides the scholars and their families in applying to high schools that would help the scholars realize their academic potential. Finally, IEA pays for tuition for all four years of high school.
The application, which is rather involved, must be submitted by April 21, 2015. In order to be considered for this scholarship, a student must take the SAT. The last SAT date for this year is May 2, and you must register for that testing date by April 6.
Registration is now open for UGA’s Summer Academy, day and residential camps for kids ages 11 to 17.
Camp topics this year include digital film school, comic books, aviation, mock trial, photography, fashion design, robotics, and the ever-popular mini medical school. (That one’s filling up fast.)
Early bird discount applies if you register before March 22, 2015.
Ivy Bridge Academy is offering week-long debate camps from June to early August for rising 4th through 12th graders.
The camps will be offered at the school’s Johns Creek and Cumming campuses, and will be taught by decorated debaters and debate coaches.
For elementary-age students, the camps focus on the basics of public speaking and research. The middle-school camp delves into the foundations of formal debate, with campers addressing a different topic each week. High-schoolers work on advanced skills in competitive debate.
Georgia Tech has opened registration for the 2015 Summer PEAKS program, with camps for kids in rising 4th to 12th grades.
These week-long camps cover topics in computing and engineering, including LEGO robotics, mobile app design, architecture, and physics.
All camps are held on the Georgia Tech campus.
High-achieving, seventh-grade students whose families have limited incomes are encouraged to apply for the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation’s Young Scholars program. Applications are being accepted through April 14, 2015.
The Young Scholars program offers advisement and financial support from eighth grade through the end of high school. The scholarship pays for enrichment activities — such as summer camps, music lessons, and distance learning classes — for students who are academically solid and financially challenged. (Wondering what “financially challenged” means? Applicants must have adjusted family income of $95,000 or less, and the Foundation reports that the average family income of its scholars is $30,000 a year.)
Students must apply during their seventh-grade year. Those selected enter the program in eighth grade and continue as Young Scholars through high school. The Young Scholars program also is a pathway to the Jack Kent Cooke College Scholarship program, which provides $40,000 per year for college.
The application package requires tax forms and teacher recommendations, so give yourself time to get everything together.