GEMS Summer Camp was designed in 2016 with the purpose of exposing female middle school students to STEAM practices and careers in science, technology, engineering, the arts, and math. In addition to camp activities, female guest speakers in STEAM careers meet and engage the student participants with a hands-on activity related to their field.
In 2018, the GEMS+ Summer Camp was developed to include all the same STEAM enrichment activities associated with the traditional GEMS camp, while adding key social activism, civic engagement, and social-emotional learning components. With GEMS+, all STEAM camp activities are centered around understanding and addressing one social issue, and the camp includes a partnership with an associated area nonprofit. Following the end of the camp, the students’ work is featured at a celebration that benefits the area nonprofit. The real-world component and authentic audience of GEMS+ makes the camp exciting and meaningful for all those involved.
GEMS+ is sponsored by the Lysander Parks and Recreation Department.