The University of Pikeville

STEM Mini-Camp 2017


For more than 20 years, the University of Pikeville played host to the Math & Science Day Camp program. With open registration from 100-200 5th-8th grade students each summer, the program developed a reputation for quality education and hands-on excitement.  Often times, families would make vacation arrangements around the dates of the camp program.  However, in the past couple of years the number of competing summer programs (band camp, academic offerings, athletic camps/practices, religious retreats, etc.) have seen the population of registered participants drop.  As a result, we’ve redesigned the camp program to allow more time for focused instruction and flexibility for those wanting to participate. 


UPIKE, with a generous grant from EQT, will be offering our 2nd annual STEM Mini-Camp program this summer.  We hope these new offerings will appeal to a wider group of students that are interested in a content-rich experience, offered in a smaller timeframe. 


Currently, we’re offering four, two-day STEM Mini-Camps:


Monday, July 10 & Tuesday, July 11 = ENTERING 5th or 6th grade – Session #1

·      Geology

o  Participants will investigate the process of the rock cycle by participating in hands on experiments and activities. Campers will be creating their very own models of metamorphic, igneous, sedimentary rocks by simulating the real-life process for the geologic formations. Students will also learn how to identify minerals by experimenting, observing, and analyzing individual mineral properties. Participants will use their identification skills of minerals to compete in a scavenger hunt!  In addition to the completed activity models, campers will also take home their own rock/mineral kit.


Monday, July 10 & Tuesday, July 11 = ENTERING 7th or 8th grade – Session #1

·      Puzzles & Games

o  Have you ever wondered how many armies to attack with in Risk, how to leap pegs in the triangular peg puzzle and leave only one peg, or how to solve the Rubik’s Cube?  In this STEM Mini-Camp, campers will explore hands-on, as well as with some probability theory, how to determine effective attacks in Risk, how to increase chances of leaving fewer pegs in a peg puzzle, and how to solve the Rubik’s Cube one layer at a time.  Campers will also explore some other classical puzzles including the Towers of Hanoi, wooden and plastic sliding puzzles, and 3-dimensional objects like folded polygons.  Participants will be provided with several puzzles/games to take home.


Wednesday, July 12 & Thursday, July 13 = ENTERING 5th or 6th grade – Session #2

·         All About Arthropods

o   Do you love bugs? Good, because insects are everywhere and they are the largest animal group--about 85% of all known animals in the world are arthropods. These fascinating creatures will amaze you when you get a chance to study them up close! Campers will learn about arthropod natural history and biodiversity through a series of fun projects and activities, including experiments and dissections. We will get up close and personal with some real live creepy-crawlies! Each participant will get their very own live arthropod to take home.


Wednesday, July 12 & Thursday, July 13 = ENTERING 7th or 8th grade – Session #2

·         Cryptography

o   In this mini-camp, students will be introduced to many different encryption techniques. They will receive hands-on practice with substitution, keyword, Vigenere, and several other cyphers. Paper-and-pencil and computer tools for encryption, decryption, and code-breaking will be used. Students will also learn a little about RSA encryption which is found in use on the Internet. A reading book, workbook, and other materials will be provided.


Each session will be limited to 20 students and carries a registration fee of $50 (which will include all activities, lunch, and a camp T-shirt).  Each session will run from 8:30AM-3:00PM each of the two days.  Session and registration details can accessed by clicking on the session title above. Please feel free to contact Dr. Arts if you have any questions.


Interested in Volunteering for one of the STEM Mini-Camp sessions?  Click ----> HERE!


Questions should be directed to:


Robert W. Arts, Ph.D.

Professor of Education & Physics

The University of Pikeville

147 Sycamore Street

Pikeville, Ky  41501

Office: 606-218-5476