Mathpath 2003 held Black Hills State University
June 29 - July 27
My daughter attended MathPath 2003. Being an over-anxious, over-protective parent of an only child I had several misgivings about the camp before the event! My child had never been away from home on her own for more than a couple of days. I was skeptical about the ability of the young counseling staff to ably see to the safety and well being of a sizeable group of energetic 12 to 14 year-olds. I was also concerned that four weeks devoted entirely to the study of mathematics would lead to an information overload and cause a loss of interest in the subject. I was therefore reluctant to send my daughter on her own and requested Dr. Thomas to let me accompany her for the entire duration of the camp. During our very first week at the camp I realized that my concerns regarding the welfare of the children in general and my daughter in particular were unfounded. The camp was exceptionally well run. The academic and non-academic aspects of the camp were very well balanced. The staff took considerable pains to plan outings and activities to occupy the children after lectures and during the weekend. The lectures were equally well planned. They were at a level that was comprehendible by the majority of the students. The teachers at the camp were of the highest caliber. The problem-solving sessions were tailored to challenge the children while avoiding discouraging them. The five young counselors were ideal role models for the children. They were all caring, mature, intelligent, accomplished individuals. They were responsible yet had a sense of fun that allowed them to relate very well to the younger campers. The children were never left unsupervised. The decision to permit my child to attend MathPath was one of the best decisions I have made for her. At the beginning of the camp several of the children looked apprehensive and homesick. At the end of the four weeks these very same children looked like part of a very happy family and were loathe to part company. My daughter has returned from camp with an enhanced appreciation and interest in Mathematics. She is already looking forward to next yearís camp!
-- Komala Krishnaswamy, Sugarland, TX
Firstly, thank you very much for an excellent camp for my son Conrad to enrol this summer.
Secondly, I'm sure that Conrad will love to attend the camp again. But I believe that he'll be too old for it. May be his sister can attend next year ? But she is not a return student. You think that she can apply now ?
-- Chan Rosa, Toronto, Canada
I want to thank you for the fabulous camp which you provided this year. Alexei had a wonderful time. He loved the hyperbolic geometry, neutral geometry, hands-on activities with Knot Theory, all the problem-solving, the logic problems. He has come back definitely with an expanded interest in mathematics.. He was basically a happy camper.
-- Nina Wallerstein, Albuquerque, NM
We had many goals for our son in attending MathPath. We hoped he would be challenged and entranced by the Math - he was. We hoped he would experience some independence and a taste of college in a well-supervised and safe environment - he was. We hoped he would meet and make friends with kids of all different backgrounds - he did. We hoped he would have fun and go on fun & interesting trips and he did. Mathpath was an excellent camp which exceeded all of our expectations.
We would like to thank you and the counselors for creating such an excellent opportunity for both math and personal growth. It was our sonís first trip alone and we were apprehensive. Our experience was that everything that could be planned for had been such as greeters, calls home etc., had been. In addition, there was built-in flexibility in the program and living arrangements. We would not hesitate to send our son again.
-- Eric & Linda Uhlenhuth, Louisville, KY
We were very impressed with the quality of the Mathpath instruction and recreational opportunities. We could not have found a better match for our son who has a great passion for math. Jeremy learned an enormous amount and made friends who he communicates with via email regularly. The camp really went the extra mile in everything they did and the kids came home with a yearbook packed full of great information and fun, a fantastic t-shirt which the kids designed themselves, a CD full of photos, and access to a web page which allows the alumni to communicate and offers continuing math education. The math instruction taught the children excellent problem solving skills as well as tweaking those brain cells with information many of these children would never see until college or graduate school. Lots of opportunities were given to the children to express themselves, test their limits and grow. The recreational opportunities were top notch and the children were introduced to the beautiful natural wonders in uSouth Dakota and Wyoming. We felt very comfortable with the management of the camp and were pleased with how quickly our one issue was resolved: Jeremy has a strong, possibly fatal allergy to peanuts and the staff ensured his safety at all times.
Thank you for an incredible one of a kind experience! We would highly recommend Mathpath to any child who has a strong math bent and wants to combine learning with a full, fun camp experience.
-- Sandy and Klaus Hahn, San Diego, CA
My son went last summer as a 7th grader and we could not have asked for a better experience for him. What is perfect is that the camp is only for middle schoolers and there were plenty of top notch students who were at Nationals for Mathcounts. The coursework was incredible and the activities were really great! I can't say enough about this experience - worth every penny and then some.
May son and all of his friends at MathPath had a phenomenal time. Just being with that number of kids his age (in 8th grade this year) who could be absorbed in math was an experience in itself. The instructors and counselors were all very good; the kids were impressed with having their problem-solving teams lead by Math Olympiad members. John Conway, the creator of the Game of Life, was a guest speaker for a week (a definite highlight).
The staff was absolutely incredible - they addressed the whole child, not just these children's math minds. They had soccer, capture the flag, or swimming every evening and the field trips were to such places as Mt. Rushmore, Devil's Tower, and a Mammoth Dig. They even had a talent show and several kids learned to ride a unicycle!
For a significant number of the students (including my own), this was their first sleep-away camp and I heard of NO homesickness. (We are in the metro Atlanta area, so it was a looonnng way from home as well.) We flew up to camp, then drove up at the end and spent a few days in the area so we got a very good feel for the atmosphere at the camp. Every member of the staff showed that they LOVED what they were doing (even after four weeks with the kids - and no air conditioning in the dorm!) Dr. Thomas is so inspiring to the students, encouraging them to strive in every venture!
I cannot more highly recommend a camp to anyone whose child would rather do math than eat at most times! Two of the parents who wrote recommendations on the brochure were my son's two best friends at camp; their opinions were very on the mark!
-- Excerpt from a March 1, 2004, posting on the Forum at Art of Problem Solving website. You can see it by searching the word "Mathpath" at the Forum.
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