Northern Illinois University is located 65 miles west of Chicago and 45 miles southeast of Rockford. NIU is a comprehensive educational institution that has a regional and national reputation for the quality of its students, faculty, staff, facilities, and research activities. NIU's 514-acre main campus in DeKalb is located one mile north of the East-West Tollway (Interstate 88) near the junction of state highways 38 and 23.
No, we have campers from across the United States and occasionally from overseas.
First, parents must apply, preferably online, and pay the appropriate deposit, $100.00 for early registrants, but higher as we get near to start of camp. A link to the appropriate form is at the upper right hand of each camp session’s description page. Applying online automatically signs you up for a payment plan for the fee balance. If you chose not to apply online, you may download the application form accessible under Forms on camps homepage. Follow instructions on the form for payment information and mailing instructions. http://niu.edu/stem/camps/index.shtml
Secondly, Parents, campers, and a few of their teachers must complete the application packet, also found on the camps homepage http://niu.edu/stem/camps/index.shtml under Forms and return it to STEM Outreach in a timely manner.
The application packet consists of the parental consent form, health form, behavior contract, teacher recommendation forms, and personal statement from the camper..
Due to the nature of these camps, we require a teacher recommendation to determine the academic interest of the camper. The teacher should speak about what they feel the camper could get out of the experience and what the camper will put in to the experience. It does not have to be a current teacher.
Yes, the camp fees cover food, lodging, instruction, and all camp materials. However, campers may want to bring snacks and money for souvenirs during the week.
Discounts are printed on each camp session description page. We keep the fees as low as possible for all campers, so discounts cannot be combined. The deepest discount is for early applicants.
In order to reserve the camper's spot in the camp, you need to provide a $100 deposit. If you apply online, you are automatically.
This changes from year to year depending on available funding. Those awarded scholarships are expected to pay the balance owed for the camp. All scholarships are awarded in the form of discounted registration fees. Please fill out the Scholarship Application Form and submit it. Parents of campers who are on the free or reduced lunch program that are applying for a summer camp may contact us for an additional discount.
Many local organizations offer financial support for campers. Check with your local service groups, booster clubs, and your school guidance counselor.
Counselors range from college instructors, graduate students, undergraduate students, and teachers. Each person working in our camps is required to have an extensive background check.
Our camps are limited in size ranging from 20 to up to 60. Design challenges, activities, and laboratory investigations are done in small groups of 2 – 5 participants. The adult-camper ratio is approximately 1 to 5.
All STEM Outreach camps are residential and campers must stay overnight. Only under extraordinary circumstances would commuting campers be considered.
Yes, campers reside and dine in a newly renovated residence hall on NIU's campus in DeKalb, Illinois. The residence hall is air conditioned. Two campers share a room; campers may request a specific roommate. Linens and pillows are not provided. There is adult supervision at all times as camp counselors live in the residence hall alongside the campers.
Parents will be billed $150 for each occurrence to replace all lost keys.
Campers should bring casual clothes and comfortable, sturdy walking shoes. We also recommend campers bring an umbrella and/or rain gear and a sweater. Campers should bring towels, all personal hygiene necessities, their own personal pillow, bed linens, or a sleeping bag. They also might want to bring a small fan, a small radio, and extra money for snacks, souvenirs, etc.
Please refer to the behavior contract in the application packet. Please, note that NIU is not responsible for any lost or stolen personal items.
Camp check-in and orientation are on Sunday early evening in the main lobby of the assigned residence hall on NIU's DeKalb campus. Residence hall assignment and check-in time will be mailed to campers approximately two weeks prior to the start of camp. Those assignments are based on camp enrollments.
There will be no dinner provided for the campers on Sunday. Campers will pick up their camp materials and meet the camp staff during this time.
Parents and campers should look for a STEM Outreach banner in the residence hall lobby to find the check-in table for our camp. There may be a few other camps checking in at the same time. Campers will sign in and receive their name tag and a string bag with a lab notebook and week’s schedule. Parents of campers with medication or any health or learning concerns should speak with the designated camp administrator at this time. Campers then proceed to the residence hall check-in where they receive their room assignment and key.
Parents are welcome to accompany campers to their room to help them get settled. Once campers are checked in they are not to leave the assigned area without speaking to camp administration. Parents are asked to leave before orientation.
Yes, at 2 p.m. on Friday of camp week campers make short, group presentations on what they have done/learned during the week. Campers are excited to share this with family members, so please try to make it to the presentation if at all possible.
At the end of the presentation on Friday afternoon campers whose parents are present may leave with them to go back to the residence hall and retrieve their possessions. They will be packed up before leaving the room Friday morning, so it should not take long. They need to return their key to the residence hall front desk and sign out.
Campers whose parents or guardians are not able to attend the presentation should pick their child up at the residence hall between 3:15 and 4 p.m. They will be escorted to the residence hall by counselors at the end of the presentation between 3 and 3:30 p.m.
When you arrive on Sunday, you can drop off campers and luggage in front of the residence hall they will be staying at for the camp. If campers drive themselves, they must obtain a free parking permit from the residence hall front desk the day they arrive. While the camper is at camp, they will not be allowed to drive their vehicle.
A parent or guardian must give the camp director a dated and signed letter that explains:
For safety reasons, we cannot release any camper without a dated and signed letter from their parent or guardian. The individual picking up the camper will be required to show valid identification.
7:30 a.m. - Breakfast
8:15 a.m. - Morning Session
Noon - Lunch
1:30 p.m. - Afternoon session
5:00 p.m. - Dinner
6:30 p.m. - Special evening activity
10:00 p.m. - Campers return to residence halls
10:30 p.m. - Room check
11:00 p.m. - Lights out
Please, alert us to any food allergies and/or dietary restrictions on the health form. Your child will be choosing food cafeteria style in the residence hall. She/he will need to be proactive in watching for allergens. If we provide snacks for special events, we will be sure to accommodate any allergies.
You will be contacted to pick up your child early from camp depending on the severity of the sickness. If that is not an option, your child will be placed in a room by themselves and we will contact the student's guardians to alert them of the sickness and for further guidance.
If you still have additional questions, please contact Pati Sievert, STEM Camps Director, at (815) 753-1201 or firstname.lastname@example.org.