“Wow!” and “That’s cool!” were heard loud and clear at the Elk River campus from kids attending the Junior Veterinarian and Junior Criminal Justice Camps that were offered through Elk River Community Education.
The camps are usually run in the summer months with two additional opportunities for kids to attend the Junior Vet Camp in the spring and fall months. The attendees of the camps (32 in all) ranged from 4th grade to 8th grade and were exposed to a variety of real-world activities and scenarios that would be experienced in each field.
The students in the Junior Vet Camps were provided with their own stethoscope and were able to see and learn about domestic animals (dogs and cats) and exotics and pocket pets (rabbits, rats and guinea pigs). Veterinary Technology Program Chair Tanya Jergenson and veterinary technology instructor Nicole Greenlund led the sessions with assistance from vet tech students.
The Junior Criminal Justice camp offered a crime scene, investigations training, finger printing, and a special session about “blood spatter.” Criminal Justice Program Chair Janell Trocke along with Justice Club members taught the session.
Britny Schmitz, Justice Club President, enjoyed the opportunity to work with the students in their group. She explained that the camp “…inspires future criminal justice students” which is a huge benefit to the field.
The highlight of the day for both camps was a visit from Axel, a K9 from the Sherburne County Sheriff’s Office, and his handler, Trevor Tuorila. The duo demonstrated a few techniques that are used in the field and Tuorila shared stories about training Axel and the requirements of the job.
Overall, the camps were a tremendous success. Noella Fath-Cutter, arts, enrichment, and academic coordinator for ISD 728 Community Education, feels that these camps are a great opportunity for kids in the district to explore different careers.
“They get hands-on opportunities that allow them to see what is actually done in the field in a real college setting, which is far different and more fun than doing the same activities in their elementary and middle school classrooms,” said Fath-Cutter.
As a campus, we continue to look for opportunities to connect and benefit our local community and the community education camps fit in well with this goal. We plan to continue to offer the camps in the future.