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For Immediate Release: March 3, 2009
Contact: Mary Stadick Smith - (605) 773-7228

Students to represent state at National Youth Science Camp

Nicole DeJong of Avon and Joshua Peterson of Brookings have been selected as two of the most promising young scientists in South Dakota’s 2009 high school graduating class. The two will participate as delegates in the 46th year of the National Youth Science Camp held in West Virginia. Laura Bade of Northwestern High School in Mellette, Lauren Takahashi of Sturgis Brown High School, and Hanna Mortimer of Rapid City Stevens have been selected as alternates.

“This event draws some of the nation’s brightest young scientists and is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for participants,” said South Dakota Secretary of Education Tom Oster. “We are proud to be sending Nicole and Joshua to represent South Dakota at this prestigious event.”

The National Youth Science Camp is an annual summer forum where students from every state exchange ideas with leading scientists and professionals from the academic and corporate worlds. Lectures and hands-on research projects are presented by scientists from across the United States who work on some of the most provocative topics in science today: fractal geometry, the human genome project, global climate change, the history of the universe, the fate of our rain forests, and robotics.

Delegates to the NYSC are challenged to explore new areas in the biological and physical sciences, art and music with resident staff members. Delegates also present seminars covering their own areas of research and interest.

The National Youth Science Camp’s academic program is complemented by an outdoor recreation program, which includes backpacking, caving, rock climbing, mountain biking and kayaking in the Monongahela National Forest.

DeJong and Peterson will spend July 1-25 in West Virginia. The National Youth Science Foundation®, based in Charleston, covers all of their expenses.