38 undertake STEM challenge | News

OTTUMWA – Thirty-eight children are designing duct-tape products and dismantling electronic devices this week. Breanna Hinmon is pleased.

The students are participating in Ottumwa’s inaugural Camp Invention on the Indian Hills campus. Breanna Hinmon, Talented and Gifted instructor at Liberty Elementary, is pleased with the turn out.

“As a first year camp, you want to run north of 25,” Hinmon said as the camp opened Monday morning.

Camp Invention is a national elementary enrichment program for students in kindergarten through sixth grades supported by National Inventors Hall of Fame. Hinmon, is directing the Ottumwa camp.

Hinmon taught at Southeast Polk’s Camp Invention earlier this summer, her first look at Camp Invention in action. “I want to bring it to Ottumwa every year,” said Hinmon.

Camp Invention focuses on science, technology, engineering and math, subjects that will produce the innovators of tomorrow. The STEM Initiative is the backbone of Camp Invention.

“We didn’t have this camp when I was in elementary school,” Hasya Joshi said Monday while helping students make duct tape money bags. A sophomore at Ottumwa High School, Joshi is one of seven leadership interns at Camp Invention this week.

Being accepted for the position was an easy, online process. “You had to sign up online and complete [online] training,” Joshi said. “They teach you to inspire kids, how to be a leader.

“I want to be an engineer someday,” said Joshi. He hopes to inspire some of the students at Camp Invention to do the same.

Jessica Horvath is a graduate of OHS and volunteered to be a leader at Camp Invention while on summer break from college. “I had a friend tell me about it,” said Hovath. She thought it was “a great volunteer opportunity. I’m a biology major, so STEM is pretty important to me.”

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