Month: April 2019

Deadline Approaching for Transportation Scholarships

The deadline for two more of our competitive scholarship programs is coming up fast! Students interested in either the National Summer Transportation Institute (NSTI) or our Rail & Intermodal Transportation (RIT) programs need to apply by Wednesday, May 1 at 5 PM.

NSTI is a two-week long program centered on the transportation industry. Students learn about trains, planes, ships, automobiles, highways, and many other aspects of the field. There are numerous field trips, including to the Mackinac Bridge, Sault Ste. Marie, the local airport, and railroad yards.

RIT focuses specifically on the rail industry, including the many ways in which trains, ships, and trucking (there’s the “intermodal” part!) are engineered and operated. Students will learn about advancements in railroad technology, like alternative fuels and advanced train control systems, as well as go on technical tours at facilities in Marquette MI and Duluth MN.

Both programs provide insight into engineering (especially civil engineering), give students a chance to see real-world applications, and center on hands-on exploration. These two programs require completed scholarship applications, and decisions will be made by mid-May.

Send materials in either by scan (nsti@mtu.edu and rit@mtu.edu, respectively) or by snail mail at:

Summer Youth Programs
217 Administration Bldg.
1400 Townsend Dr.
Houghton, MI  49931

We look forward to hearing from you soon!


Introducing our 2019 SYP Head Staff Team!

SYP Head Staff
L to R Front: Grace Kluchka, Mallory Benkert, Skylar Callis  | Back Row: Zachary Smith and Rob Lambert

As the start of Summer Youth Programs quickly approaches, we are very excited to introduce you to our 2019 SYP Head Staff team. This amazing group of Michigan Tech students take on additional leadership in the summer, including training during orientation, coordinating staff schedules, and problem-solving when the unexpected arises.

During the first few head staff meetings, they shared what they are most looking forward to this year. Here are a few of their thoughts:

I have been a counselor in the past and really enjoyed igniting students’ passion for STEM and asking them questions.  I am looking forward to using my past experiences as an activity and day counselor to solve any issues and develop some new campus activities that are free/low cost for participants to try.

Grace Kluchka, Head Activities Counselor

Returning Head Operations Counselor Robert Lambert shared the value of being a second-year as a Head Counselor and third year member of the SYP staff.

I really enjoyed last summer as a head counselor and grew a lot as a leader and a person. This year I am starting with a better understanding of my role and bringing more experience and attention to details.

Mallory Benkert worked with SYP last year as a Student Coordinator; this year, she will bring those strong organizational skills to the leadership team as as Head Counselors’ Counselor. And, no, you didn’t read that wrong—although it is an odd job title! The HCC is in charge of scheduling, general check-ins, and any concerns from the staff members themselves.

I was motivated to apply to be on the leadership team so I can be more “in” the scenes than “behind” the scenes.

Zachary Smith and Skylar Callis also bring a summer of experience to their roles, and will both be taking on new perspectives within SYP. Zach worked at the front desk last year and will move into the Head Residence Counselor Role. Skylar, meanwhile, is taking on Head Operations with Rob after spending last year as a Residence Counselors.

As June approaches and final plans fall into place, we are very excited to work with this Head Staff and our full SYP team to bring another great summer of programs to you. We come back year after year, too, because as it turns out, we love this opportunity just as much as our students do. It’s so much more than a camp or class—it’s an experience. And for many, it’s life changing.


Devin’s Story from SYP!

At the end of each summer we ask students to share with us what attending Summer Youth Programs meant to them in the form of a story contest, these stories never disappoint! Our 2018 middle school level winner shares her story below.

“My name is Devin and SYP has taught me so much. I learned how to be a strong and independent person, how to make the world a better place. I got to experience college living firsthand, and have fun while doing it all. In Engineering 101 we learned about so many different things that come into play in everyday lives without people even realizing. Everything was hands on and taught us how to think creatively, like the time we designed prosthetic legs out of recycled materials in the Bio-Medical lesson. SYP was nothing close to a regular summer camp, but that’s what made it so special. It was days packed full of learning, amazing food, new friends, and a few Walmart runs all mixed into one unforgettable experience. Michigan Tech has always been my dream college. It was so inspiring to learn about science and engineering from instructors of this amazing school. I learned so much about future career paths and can’t wait to learn even more. I hope in the future there will be more and more female engineers that I will grow to work with and learn from. My experience at camp was absolutely amazing, and I hope I can come back next year.” – Devin O., 2018 SYP participant

We love reading stories like Devin’s and hearing that students are not only learning about careers, but building confidence and independence in themselves and their ability to succeed in college. We also hope that Devin comes back this summer to learn even more and work on her own path to becoming a successful engineer.


Application Deadlines for Scholarship Programs!

As April gets underway, we are fast approaching the application deadline for many of our competitive scholarship programs! The following programs are included in this pool:

  • Women in Engineering (WIE)
  • Engineering Scholars Program (ESP)
  • Junior Women in Engineering (JWIE)
  • Women in Computer Science (WICS)
  • Women in Automotive Engineering (WIAE)

Applicants to WIE, ESP, JWIE, WICS, and WIAE who submit a complete set of materials by 5:00 p.m. EDT, April 10, will be considered for acceptance. We do honor postmark, so get everything together and in the mail on that date!

Why apply for one of these intensive STEM programs? The opportunities students will have are so vast: work in teams to test bridge models; solder circuit boards; find out about the human factors in automotive design; explore cybersecurity and virtual reality. In addition, a week on campus has so many experiences to offer, from living with a roommate to eating in the dining hall, managing your own time in the evening to seeing the beauty of the Keweenaw Peninsula.

My experience in the Engineering Scholars Program has been a mix of both meaningful and enjoyable. This unforgettable week has taught me about various fields in engineering and has provided me with the hands-on experience to think and solve crucial problems like an engineer. One of my favorite parts was the first-hand feel for what it is like to live on campus and stepping into the shoes of a college student.

Aarush G., 2018 ESP Participant

More details about the scholarship programs, including required application materials, can be found on our website. If you have any questions, you can always reach us at syp@mtu.edu or by phone at 906-487-2219.