Western Kentucky University’s campus is now abuzz with questions and phrases unfamiliar to many — “Are you a fourth year-fourth year or third year-fourth year?” “Which optionals are you going to today?” “Do you want to be in the boogaloo crew for the talent show?”
We at The Center for Gifted Studies, however, know what these inquires mean: VAMPY 2012 has begun!
Nearly 250 students from three countries, 16 states, and more than 60 Kentucky school districts arrived on campus yesterday to participate in our Summer Program for Verbally and Mathematically Precious Youth for outgoing seventh through 10th graders. During the three-week program, students stay in WKU residence halls while taking one for our 14 classes, ranging from Sustainability to Chinese, Genetics to Humanities, and Astronomy to Presidential Politics.
Aaron, a second year-second year (meaning it’s his second year being eligible for VAMPY and his second year attending) said his Forensic Chemistry course hit the ground running today, and he can’t wait for more.
“I think it’s going to be really fun,” he said. “There are a lot of activities that really make you think.”
Third year-third year Meredith said she welcomes a challenge from her Mathematics class, which is why she comes to VAMPY.
“I expect it to be hard,” she said. “I’m sure that I will get a lot out of it.”
As students took their lunch break today, though, it was clear that classes aren’t the only thing that keeps them coming back year after year.
Third year-fourth year Katie said a special community forms at VAMPY, in which everyone accepts each other for who they are and celebrates uniqueness.
“We’ve only been here one day, and I’ve already met so many new friends,” she said. “You come here and there are a lot of people that are like you, that like the same things you like.”
Fellow third year-forth year Jacob agreed, noting that it’s a combination of the courses and VAMPY community that brings him back to the Hill each summer.
“I actually learn a lot in my classes, and it’s fun most of all. You meet a lot of great people and get a lot of bracelets,” he said, showing off a forearm full of brightly-colored friendship bracelets that he’s collected over the past three summers.
We can’t wait to see how many bracelets Jacob has on July 14, but in the meantime, we will keep you updated on the goings on at VAMPY 2012 with blog posts from teachers, counselors, and staff members, as well as TONS of photos. Check back often; the summer’s off a great start!