Penn State, Penn College Offer Northern Tier Career Camp

Published 08.01.2001


Will they become butchers, bakers, candlestick makers or something else? It's up to 15 inquisitive youngsters from the Northern Tier counties to decide, now that they've completed an innovative career camp at Pennsylvania College of Technology's North Campus near Wellsboro.

Penn College and the Penn State Center for Continuing Education at Penn College joined forces to offer, "Butcher, Baker, Candlestick Maker . . . What Do You Want to Be?" The camp, held July 23-27, gave children ages 9-12 the opportunity to satisfy their curiosity and explore various careers in health sciences, business and computer technologies, hospitality, natural resources, communications and engineering technologies. The children learned about themselves and the world of work through interactive discussions, hands-on activities, tours, journaling and reflection.

One of the camp's highlights occurred when instructor Harry Colegrove guided campers as they assembled and tested computers. Later that day, Colegrove helped campers create their own home pages on the World Wide Web.

Colegrove shared with the campers his own key to a successful career: "Find something you love doing so much that you would do it for nothing," he said. "Then, learn to do it so well that someone will pay you to do it."

Other highlights included a tour of local agri-businesses, hosted by the Penn State Cooperative Extension, and a field trip to Penn College's Aviation Center and Plastics Technology labs. In the plastics area, campers were assigned individual roles or "jobs," working with others in team fashion to "manufacture" several plastics products, including bags and flying discs.

"Campers enjoyed a unique summer experience embracing values of communication, education, creativity and cultural differences," said Camp Coordinator Kristen Michael. "The camp really succeeded in its goals of helping children learn about themselves and their world of work. We were glad to be a part of it."

The week concluded with a ceremony at the North Campus Commons, in which campers presented to their parents a publication of their experiences and personal reflections.

The concept of a Career Camp for Northern Tire youngsters was endorsed by the eight-county K-16 Council as a way of motivating young people, helping them realize their potential and increasing their awareness of area employment opportunities.

Financial support for "Butcher, Baker, Candlestick Maker . . . What Do You Want to Be?" was provided by the K-16 Council, Penn State and Penn College.

For more information about the camp or the organizations involved, contact the North Campus as (570) 724-7703, the Penn State Continuing Education Center at Penn College at (570) 322-5771, or visit the Penn College or Continuing Education Web sites.