News and Events

Bernard Harris Science Camp Coming to SWOSU

July 10, 2008

Southwestern Oklahoma State University in Weatherford will be a location for one of the 25 ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Summer Science Camps held across the United States this summer.

The SWOSU camp is scheduled for July 13-25. Bernard Harris, the first African American to walk in space, will be on the SWOSU campus on Monday, July 21, to work with the students and visit with media at a special event at 10:30 a.m. in the Memorial Student Center.

The primary goal of the camps is to expose students from culturally under-represented groups to the possibility of careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields. Director of the SWOSU camp is Wayne Trail. SWOSU has the only camp of this kind in the state of Oklahoma.

The two-week residential camp will offer innovative programs to enhance middle school students’ knowledge in science, technology, engineering and mathematics while encouraging youth to stay in school and develop their leadership potential and citizenship skills. In addition, camp programs will expose students to campus life; improve their abilities to successfully complete university programs in STEM disciplines; and enrich the math and science teacher/educator expertise in science, engineering and technology.

Unlike most summer camps, there is no fee required to attend the ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Summer Science Camp. Young people who are academically qualified, recommended by their teachers and genuinely interested in math and science are rewarded with the opportunity to attend these fun and educational camps at no cost.

Repeated studies have shown that the United States faces a critical shortage of engineers, scientists and other mathematics- and science-literate workers. Through numerous efforts, ExxonMobil is supporting programs and organizations that focus on improving mathematics and science education from pre-school through higher education.

“Science, technology, engineering and mathematics are critical elements to our nation’s economic, security and medical advancements in the 21st century and beyond. Preserving our nation as the world leader in these fields requires an investment in our youth today,” said Dr. Harris, veteran of two space shuttle mission and the first African-American to walk in space. “We are glad to extend this opportunity to SWOSU and appreciate their eagerness to support our program’s efforts in encouraging students to reach higher standards of achievement.”

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