The Summer Camp for Academically Talented Middle School Students
It’s my second home. It’s somewhere where I feel comfortable being myself.
— Addie Blankinship, SCATS 2016-18
I've enjoyed being able to work at a faster pace. I love the teachers here because if you have a question, they can go in depth with their answer. It's very exciting.
— Halle Burton, SCATS 2020
When my mom picked me up at the end of SCATS, I didn’t want to leave because I’d realized that there are people like me here. I made so many friends.
— Maggie McCloud , SCATS 2018-19
A two-week camp held in June, SCATS offers high-ability students who have completed grades 6–8 a unique learning environment to explore new ideas, develop concepts, make friends, and share experiences. Students arrive at the WKU campus from counties around Kentucky, states across the nation, and countries around the world to challenge themselves academically and to meet like-minded peers with diverse backgrounds and interests.
Residential campers participate in evening and weekend activities and live on WKU's campus in an air-conditioned residence hall under the supervision of camp counselors.
SCATS provides a diverse curriculum and a wide range of enrichment experiences for about 200 middle school students every summer. Course options change each year but always range from the arts and humanities to mathematics and sciences. From a list of about 20 classes, students rank their top ten choices and are placed in four, which they attend every weekday.
Teachers are drawn from the WKU faculty, outstanding area teachers, and teachers who are enrolled in the WKU graduate program in gifted studies. They structure their courses around students’ interests and understand how to go beyond the limitations of the traditional classroom to allow students to learn at higher levels and to think and create in their own ways. Courses change each year.
Though academics are at the heart of SCATS, emphasis is also placed on the social aspects of camp. Campers participate in a wide range of activities, many of which are created by their counselors, most of whom are college students who attended SCATS themselves. Whether they are competing in Ultimate Frisbee, making friendship bracelets, eating at cookouts, or playing card games, campers come together as a community where everyone is accepted and learning is celebrated.
In many cases, the friendships students form at SCATS are life-long. “It’s not just a learning camp,” one participant remarked. “It’s a place where you feel accepted, loved, and respected by your friends. It's a place you will never want to leave.”
Some need-based financial assistance is available for campers for whom the expense might prevent attendance. Contact us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (270) 745-6323 for more information.