GCC offering virtual STEAM camps this summer

  • Greenfield Community College has paired up with Black Rocket, a leader in tech education, to bring Virtual Summer STEAM Camps to children ages 8 to 14. Staff Photo/PAUL FRANZ

Staff Report
Published: 6/9/2020 1:34:27 PM

GREENFIELD — With many summer camps across Franklin County unlikely to open due to the pandemic — and some families questioning if they’ll attend, even if they do — Greenfield Community College has paired up with Black Rocket, a leader in tech education, to bring Virtual Summer STEAM Camps to children ages 8 to 14.

Taught live by teachers with expertise in technology, science, mathematics and the arts, the online camps will run for 12 weeks, a GCC press release states. Having kicked off on Monday, the camps will run through Friday, Aug. 28.

According to the release, each week-long session is divided into two sections: a three-hour session in the morning for children ages 8 to 11 and three hours in the afternoon for children 11 to 14.

“We realize that traditional camps may not be possible for families this summer,” said Kristin Cole, GCC’s associate director of Workforce Development & Community Education. “GCC is excited to partner with Black Rocket to provide a series of opportunities for kids to still learn, engage and have fun in a safe environment even during these unprecedented times.”

Offering courses on topics such as coding, game design, eSports, virtual reality and more, Black Rocket’s camps invite students across the region to engage in cutting-edge curriculum designed to encourage their imaginations and bring their ideas to life, the release states. The summer 2020 camp season includes sessions such as:

■3-D Game Design with Unity

■Battle Royale: Make Your First Fortnite-Style Video Game

■Code Your Own Adventure: Interactive Storytelling

■Inventor’s League — Prototyping for the Future

■JavaScript Developer Jam

■Make Your First Video Game

■Minecraft Animators

■Pokemon Masters: Designers and 3-D Makers Unite

■Python Programmers

■Roblox Coders and Entrepreneurs

■Rocket Kart Racers: Design a Mario Kart-Style Game

■Video Game Animation

■Virtual Reality: The Future is Now

■YouTube Content Creators

■eSports Apprentice — Streamers and Gamers

Virtual campers will also benefit from smaller break-out sessions with Black Rocket coaches and from ongoing access to Black Rocket’s Creator Corps community, which offers access to games, challenges and the 2020 International STEAM Competition.

“These are fantastic skills to start early with,” said Cole, adding that GCC was drawn to Black Rocket, a family-owned company that has spent the past 20 years focusing on bringing real-world experience, 21st-century skills, career awareness and individualized learning to children.

Tuition starts at $149 and varies by course. To register, visit noncredit.gcc.mass.edu.

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