Destiny Marshall-Ashe, a senior at Belleville Township High School East, builds a fuel cell car during the SIUE Engineering Summer Camp.

EDWARDSVILLE – Belleville senior, Destiny Marshall-Ashe, aspires to become an aerospace engineer. Growing up fascinated by her mom’s work in the Air Force, she hopes she can go a bit further than aircraft, and one day end up in the atmosphere. Having the opportunity to build and launch rockets at SIUE’s School of Engineering’s (SOE) Summer Camp is a steppingstone to Marshall-Ashe’s pursuit of her dream career.

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The SOE’s annual Engineering Summer Camp features two identical sessions held daily from June 6-10, and continuing this week, June 13-17.

It introduces high school students to various engineering disciplines and construction concepts through a set of fun, challenging and thought-provoking activities. The hands-on laboratory experiments and design contest give the campers an opportunity to learn how engineering impacts our daily lives.

“The campers?learn about the applications of engineering for energy, water, and health; the importance of communication, prototyping and the engineering design process; and emerging geospatial, artificial intelligence and robotics and automation areas,” said Chris Gordon, PhD, SOE associate dean. “Our campers are passionate about the possibilities within engineering and bring incredible creativity, curiosity, and energy to each area.”

High school senior from Alton, James Paris, knows that he wants to study engineering, but is not quite sure which specific area interests him most. Paris enjoyed the opportunity to experience many fields of engineering while at camp, gaining experience in areas he never would have thought of pursuing.

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“I have not been exposed to a lot of engineering until now,” he said. “Mechanical and civil have been the two focus areas top of mind for me. But, at camp, we have done activities in computer science, programming and robotics, too, which I had never done before.”

Current SOE students spend the week serving as camp counselors, joining in and leading campers in the activities. Graduate students Pedro Carrillo, of Charleston, and Aruna Shrestha, of Nepal, not only got to share their knowledge with the campers in their respective engineering fields, but also had the opportunity to take part and learn about engineering tracks more unfamiliar to them.

“I have not done this camp before, but I wanted to be involved,” said Carrillo, who is studying electrical and computer engineering. “Getting to know the kids has really been a joy.”

“During the camp, I got to see aspects of mechatronics, mechanical and electrical engineering as well,” added Shrestha, who is specializing in water resource engineering. “The campers are engaged and doing a lot of fun activities.”

Sponsorship for the 2022 SIUE Engineering Summer Camp is provided by Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery.

For more information on Engineering Summer Camp and additional pre-college opportunities offered through the SOE, visit departments/summer-camps.

The School of Engineering offers one of the most comprehensive and affordable engineering programs in the St. Louis region with eight undergraduate degrees, five master’s degrees and two cooperative doctoral programs, all housed in a state-of-the-art facility. Students learn from expert faculty, perform cutting-edge research and participate in intercollegiate design competitions. Companies in the metropolitan St. Louis area provide students challenging internships and co-op opportunities, which often turn into permanent employment. All undergraduate programs are accredited by their respective accreditation agencies.

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