FAIRMONT, W.Va. – Pierpont Community & Technical College is wrapping up its summer STEM camp.

Pierpont Community & Technical College Advanced Technology Center

The five-day manufacturing camp hosted kids from ages 12 to 16. The goal of the camp is to introduce young minds to science, technology, engineering, mathematics and entrepreneurship. 

Kids learned about various types of manufacturing through hands-on activities, company tours, guest speakers and more. 

A student’s soldering project

“We teach them on purpose that they have to read through the manual how it goes,” Dr. Martina Bachlechner, the camp director and STREAM Coordinator at Pierpont said. “At the beginning, they complain a little bit. ‘Why don’t you show us? Why don’t you tell us? What is my next step?’ But, they realize they can become more independent if they also walk along the instructions and realize this is the next step.” 

Students at Pierpont Community & Technical College STEM camp

“It’s really great to watch these kids learn,” Glenna Pirner, assistant camp director, said.  “They’re a little bit hesitant when they start out with things like soldering and computer programming, but once they start getting ideas about how it works, they start getting more comfortable. I’ve seen a couple of ‘ah-ha’ moments with getting a perfect soldering, and the excitement you see is just wonderful.” 

Organizers said in the future they are looking to expand the camp.