Branden Katona, a 2010 graduate of Mills E. Godwin HS from Henrico, Virginia, was selected to represent Virginia at the National Youth Science Camp® (NYSC) this summer from June 29 to July 23. Katona joined 109 other top high school graduates representing the United States as well as students from nine other countries at the prestigious four-week program, now in its 46th year. The camp, located in the beautiful and rustic setting of the Monongahela National Forest in West Virginia, integrates scientific programming with opportunities for delegates to explore music, art, and the outdoors.
Each year, eminent scientists from various disciplines travel to the camp to present lectures and directed studies. This year’s lecture topics included: Global Warming, Genomic Medicine, Radio Astronomy, and Energy Sustainability. Throughout camp, a Directed Study series provided extensive “hands-on” experiences in specific fields. According to Katona, “Mac Louthan’s lecture, “Why Things Fall Apart,” was very inspiring. Not only did it teach the importance of selecting the right. materials in engineering, but also in life. I will remember his six reasons why things fail and try my best to avoid them.” Delegates had the opportunity to dissect a human hand, discuss bioethics, explore forensic science techniques, and search through the DNA sequence of a genetic disease.
In addition to learning about groundbreaking scientific research, delegates also explored their natural surroundings through an extensive outdoor program consisting of hiking, caving, mountain biking, and rock climbing. The delegates may choose from an array of afternoon seminars ranging from Ultimate Frisbee and swing dancing to discussions of philosophy, travel, religion and culture. Regarding these experiences, Katona said, “The outdoors program has been truly amazing. I have been exposed to so many new activities and I have enjoyed being challenged both physically and mentally. Also, the outdoors program has enhanced my relationship with several people here. I have made some great new friends.” Branden Katona is planning to study Meteorology at University of Oklahoma this fall.
Contributions to the National Youth Science Foundation make it possible for all delegates to attend NYSC free of charge, including round-trip transportation.
For more information, please contact:
Andrew N. Blackwood, Ed.D.
National Youth Science Foundation
P.O. Box 3387
Charleston, WV 25333-3387
(304) 342-3326 voice
(866) 833-0875 fax