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The National Youth Science Camp (NYSCamp) is a residential science education program for young STEM enthusiasts the summer after they graduate from high school. Students from around the country (two are selected to represent each state and Washington, D.C.) are challenged academically in exciting lectures and hands-on studies, and have voluntary opportunities to participate in an outdoor adventure program, gain a new and deep appreciation for the great outdoors, and establish friendships that last a lifetime.


  • Inspire lifelong engagement and ethical leadership in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and related fields among delegates, who possess recognized high potential for follow-through and success.
  • Provide engaged learning opportunities in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and related professions that extend and enhance the traditional K-12 school curriculum.
  • Develop a robust network among delegates, members of the program staff, and science, technology, engineering, and mathematics professionals reinforced through community and shared experiences.
  • Encourage participants to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and related professions through an increased awareness and understanding of current education, research, and career opportunities.
  • Create a safe environment for expanding delegates’ comfort zones with scientific and cultural aspects of the natural world through outdoor adventure activities.

Major Program Elements:

  • Academic Program: The NYSCamp program includes lectures from nationally-recognized STEM professionals, small-group directed studies guided by STEM professionals, directed overnighters that usually include a field trip to a STEM site, and informal seminars presented by NYSCamp staph.
  • Outdoor Program: The NYSCamp outdoor program includes optional opportunities to go backpacking, caving, kayaking, mountain biking, and rock climbing.
  • Special Events: The NYSCamp includes several surprise special events.
  • Trip to Washington, DC: The NYSCamp delegation visits Washington, DC.

The National Youth Science Camp program is strengthened through a philosophy that encourages delegates to experience each day by day. This philosophy permits the Staph* to plan numerous special events that surprise the participants. This philosophy also encourages the delegates to give undistracted attention to guest presenters. The National Youth Science Camp does not, therefore, publish detailed program calendars.

The National Youth Science Camp is made possible through the planning and fund-raising of the National Youth Science Foundation, a nonprofit organization with a mission to honor, sustain, and encourage youth interest and excellence in science by conducting comprehensive informal science education programs that provide opportunity for constructive interaction with others and emphasize the social value of thoughtful scientific careers.

* Not misspelled; this is a traditional NYSCamp spelling to highlight their infectious enthusiasm