Summer Camps

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General Information/Fees

Camp FAQs

Q: What is Summer in the Arts at Northern?
A: Our residential camps are arts experiences for those who have a special interest in theatre, visual arts, dance, or jazz. You'll find the activities intensive and fun and you'll meet lots of people who enjoy the same things you do.

Q: What's the best thing about the camps?
A: Our camp staff, no question. The instructors and counselors are NIU faculty, students, guest artists, and alumni, as well as area teachers, and they are the best in their fields. They know a lot and they love to share their knowledge with others. Campers are supervised at all times; the ratio of adults to campers is about one to 12.

Q: How big are the camps?
A: This varies from year to year and from camp to camp, but our camps generally have between 80 - 90 campers. The campers get lots of individual attention from the staff and can get to know each other.

Q: Where do campers sleep and eat?
A: In Summer 2014, all our campers stay in Gilbert Hall, a newly renovated residence hall, with spacious, comfortable, and air-conditioned rooms. Gilbert Hall is adjacent to the Art Building (Visual Arts Camp) and Music Building (Jazz Camp) and is a short walk from the Holmes Student Center (Theatre Arts Camps) and Gabel Hall (Dance Camp). The floors have large lounges and bathroom facilities. Campers sleep two to a room. 

Campers eat all three meals in Gilbert Hall in an eat-all-you-care-to-eat dining environment.

Q: Where do the campers come from?
A: While the majority of our campers are from Illinois and the Midwest, every year we see more campers from other parts of the U.S.

Q: Where is Northern Illinois University?
A: NIU is in DeKalb, Illinois, 65 miles west of Chicago and 45 miles southeast of Rockford. Directions to the campus and maps are available on this website.

Q: Does NIU provide any financial aid for campers?
A: Yes, each camp offers NIU scholarships (worth $250) to campers who demonstrate financial need. The receipt deadline for NIU's scholarships is May 1. Application forms are available on-line or by calling the office at (815) 753-1450.  Many local organizations also offer financial support for campers. We recommend that you check with local service groups, booster clubs, and your school guidance counselor in early spring.

Q: Is there a policy on campers' use of cell phones at camp?
A: Yes, cell phones are allowed at camp, but we expect campers to be courteous and restrict cell phone use (talking or texting) to times when they are not in a planned camp activity.


Registration, Fees, and Payment Information

To register, print the registration form. Mail the form and $100 deposit to:

Summer in the Arts at Northern
College of Visual and Performing Arts
Northern Illinois University
1425 W. Lincoln Hwy.
DeKalb, IL 60115-2828


General Registration Fees  - 2014 Fees
  Early Bird Registration Fee Registration Fee
Camp Fee $515 postmark deadline - June 2) $575 (after June 2)
Visual Arts Camp only Supply Fee (mandatory) $48 $48

If you pay by credit card, you may fax your form to (815) 753-8372. If you have problems printing the form, call (815) 753-1450 and we'll mail it to you.

All registration forms must be accompanied by a deposit of $100. This may be paid by credit card or by check, made payable to Northern Illinois University. A registration form without the deposit will not be processed. The only exception is if you are applying for an NIU need scholarship; you will be expected to pay the $20 application fee only.

The balance of payment and the health/permission form for all camps are due on June 20. If you paid the deposit by credit card, and signed the form in agreement, the balance will be charged to the same card by NIU on this date. Payment by check is due on this date. 

Families receive a packet with camp information, forms, and payment information by mail in early June; the forms and camp information are available online  by June 6. Call the office at (815) 753-1450 if you have questions about your balance of payment.

Discounts

Returning Camper Discount

Returning campers from the 2013 Summer in the Arts at Northern camps and children and grandchildren of NIU staff, faculty, and students receive a $25 discount.

Early Bird Discount - Register by June 2 and save!

Save when you register and pay the deposit by June 2 (postmark deadline) for any NIU arts camp. To register, complete the registration form and send with a $100 deposit. Most camps fill before the early bird deadline, so it is important to get your registration form in as early as possible if you know you want to attend a camp.


Cancellation/Refund Information

Before Camp

A full refund is provided if NIU cancels the camp or if the camp is full. A full refund may be allowed for campers who withdraw because of illness or a family emergency; these situations are decided on a case-by-case basis and documentation from a doctor or other professional is required.  If the camp is full, the camper is put on a waiting list and will not be charged.

A camper who withdraws more than 28 days before the start date of the camp receives a refund of all but $50.00.  A camper who withdraws 15-27 days before the start date of the camp receives a refund of all but $100.00. A camper who withdraws 14 days or less before the start date of camp does not receive a refund.

During Camp
A camper who leaves camp during the week because of illness or a family emergency may receive a prorated refund, provided documentation from a doctor or other professional is provided within one week of the date the camper left.  If the camper leaves camp during the week for other any other reason, the camper does not receive a refund.

All refunds are issued by the same method of payment that was used to make the payment. Credit card refunds are credited to the same credit card used for the payment within 2-3 days of the request. Refunds by check can take 4–6 weeks.


  

Scholarship Information

There is a limited amount of money available for need scholarships from NIU. The application form is available online or by calling the office at (815) 753-1450. Forms and application fees must be received by May 1. There is a $20 non-refundable application fee for NIU need scholarships. The fee will be applied towards the balance owed. Forms that do not include the application fee or that are missing requested information will not be processed. Applicants do not need to pay the deposit at this time. Award letters are sent in mid-May.

In previous years, many campers have received scholarship aid from their schools, local booster clubs, PTAs, community theatres, and local service organizations. We recommend that you contact such groups in your area in early spring.


Housing and Meals

Campers stay in Gilbert Hall, a newly-renovated residence hall on the campus of Northern Illinois University. The rooms are air-conditioned and spacious and the floors have large lounge areas and bathroom facilities. Each room  accommodates two campers. Campers are paired with someone about the same age, but are welcome to choose their own roommates. Roommate requests are honored only if both campers make reciprocal requests. Meals are served in the residence hall cafeteria.


 

Grade/Age Requirements

When we refer to a grade requirement, we expect that the student has completed that grade by the start of camp. No exceptions are made to the grade requirements.


The Staff

Northern Illinois University faculty, graduate and undergraduate students, alumni, guest artists and area teachers, serve as camp directors, instructors, and counselors. Look for more detailed information about the camp directors and staff in the bio section. Camp directors devise the camp curriculum and oversee the week's activities. All have had extensive teaching experience. Campers are supervised at all times; the ratio of adults to campers is about one to 12. Counselors are assigned to each residence hall floor and accompany the campers to all meals and activities.


Camper Packets

Campers receive a packet with camp information, forms, and payment information by mail in early June. This includes information about what to bring to camp, a final bill for the balance of payment, a health/permission form, camper rules, an information sheet about housing and meals, and a jazz theory test (Jazz Camp only) and workshop form (Theatre Camps only). All this information (minus billing information) will be online by June 6. 

NOTE: The balance due and parent/health permission form must be received in the office on or before June 20.


Check-In and Final Shows

CHECK-IN - This is a two-step process, new in 2014.  We ask parents and campers to follow the order for each camp. Convenient free parking is available in the lot south of the Music and Art Buildings. Gilbert Hall is within easy walking distance of this lot and there is a small lot in front of Gilbert. Maps and directions

July 13

Dance Camp
1.  2 - 3 p.m. - Check-in for packet, teeshirt - Music Building (Concert Hall lobby)
2.  2:15 - 3:15 p.m. - Check into Gilbert Hall (bring luggage) 
3.  3:30 p.m. - Staff/parent/camper meeting - Room TBA

Theatre Arts Camp Senior
1.  3 - 4 p.m. - Check-in for packet, teeshirt - Music Building (Concert Hall lobby)
2.  3:15 - 4:15 p.m. - Check into Gilbert Hall (bring luggage) 
3.  4:30 p.m. - Staff/parent/camper meeting - Room TBA

July 20

NIU Jazz Camp
1.  12:15 - 1:15 p.m - Check into Gilbert Hall with luggage (not instrument)
2.  12:30 - 2 p.m. - Check-in with instrument - Music Building (Concert Hall lobby)
3.  2 p.m. - Staff/parent/camper meeting - Concert Hall

Visual Arts Camp
1.  2 - 3 p.m. - Check-in for packet, teeshirt - Music Building (Concert Hall lobby)
2.  2:15 - 3:15 p.m. - Check into Gilbert Hall (bring luggage) 
3.  3:30 p.m. - Staff/parent/camper meeting - Room TBA

Theatre Arts Camp Junior
1.  3 - 4 p.m. - Check-in for packet, teeshirt - Music Building (Concert Hall lobby)
2.  3:15 - 4:15 p.m. - Check into Gilbert Hall (bring luggage) 
3.  4:30 p.m. - Staff/parent/camper meeting - Room TBA


FINAL SHOWS - Watch the final show or open house and take your camper to Gilbert Hall to pick up his/her luggage. 

July 18

Dance Camp
3:30 - 4:45 p.m. - Open House - Gabel Hall, room tba
5 p.m. - Pick up luggage in Gilbert Hall

Theatre Arts Camp Senior
6:30 p.m. - Final Performance - Holmes Student Center, Carl Sandburg Auditorium
8 p.m. - Pick up luggage in Gilbert Hall

July 25

NIU Jazz Camp
3 - 5 p.m. - Concerts - Music Building
5 p.m. - Pick up luggage in Gilbert Hall

Visual Arts Camp
5:15 p.m. - Closing Ceremony and Art Show - Art Building, Room 100
about 6:30 p.m. - Pick up luggage in Gilbert Hall

Theatre Arts Camp Junior
6:30 p.m. - Final Performance - Holmes Student Center, Carl Sandburg Auditorium
8 p.m. - Pick up luggage in Gilbert Hall

Note: All times are subject to change. Please check the camper letter that you will receive about one month before the start of camp to confirm the information.

For More Information
Call (815) 753-1450 or e-mail dbooth@niu.edu or amanda.fl@niu.edu.


Other Camps at NIU

  • Learn more about the many summer camps offered at NIU in a wide variety of subject areas, including science, health, writing, engineering, and athletics:  http://niu.edu/summercamps/