55842962142ec.imageWhile some kids were relaxing by the pool or hanging out on the couch, more than 60 rising third- through eighth-grade Moore County Schools students spent four days this summer exploring the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics at the annual STEM summer camp. 

The camp, held June 15-18 at Southern Middle School, aims to spark students' interests in fun careers in these in-demand fields. 

Activities ranged from robotics and website coding to bottle rockets, with students typically working together in groups on a project. 

The STEM summer camp (now in its third year) was made possible by a 2011 grant from the Mebane Foundation. The $2.1 million grant to Moore County Schools was earmarked for STEM initiatives, including five grant-enabled programs including the STEM Summer Camp, in addition to a computer coding camp for high-school students, a Lego Robotics Club, and more. 

With that STEM funding set to expire June 30, school officials now urge the public to help maintain these key programs.

"The Mebane Foundation required community participation to assist with sustainability after the grants ended, and we are working now to raise the necessary funding to keep these popular and beneficial programs running," Kathy Kennedy, associate superintendent for Instructional Design and Innovation with Moore County Schools, told The Pilot in May. 

Contributions may be sent to the Public Education Foundation at  www.ncmcs.org/pef or to The Public Education Foundation of Moore County, Inc., P.O. Box 1992, Southern Pines, NC 28388. For more information contact Lyons at 692-6222.

Image courtesy of The Pilot. 

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