CORVALLIS - About 345 of the brightest young students in the mid-Willamette Valley have begun their summer's work in two expanding programs at Oregon State University, exploring everything from rocketry to French, web site design and DNA.

"Interest and enrollment in our programs for gifted students is increasing every year," said Judy Michael, director of the Adventures in Learning Program for students in grades five through seven.

Offered along with a similar program called Explorations for younger students in grades three and four, the two initiatives provide a way for gifted, talented and creative learners to make early connections with university researchers, outstanding public school educators and other area professionals.

Each program runs for a 10-day period from July 6-17, with a lighter half-day program for the younger group. The programs are non-residential, although some out-of-town students and their parents take advantage of housing and meal options.

In addition to the basic swimming, crafts and sports programs that many area youth are involved in, Michael said, participants in these programs for gifted students might learn about forensic science, draw comic strips, make chain mail armor, explore desktop publishing, hone their Spanish or present a Shakespearean play. Tours of campus laboratories and other special presentations tap into the professional, scientific and technological strengths of OSU as a major research university.

"Many of our students are from Corvallis, but this year in the two programs we also have 36 students from Salem, 32 from Albany, 27 from Lebanon, and several from other locations," Michael said, "including students from as far away as Portland, Eugene, Newport, Pendleton, Tillamook and even one each from Alaska and California."

Participation in the program is based on various eligibility criteria for gifted students, Michael said, and registration takes place in the spring. For more information about next year's program or registration procedures, contact Adventures in Learning, telephone 541-753-8190, or Explorations, telephone 541-753-7072.


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Judy Michaels, 541-753-8190