James Boothe, a student at Pocahontas County High School, represented West Virginia as a delegate to the 2011 National Youth Science Camp (NYSC). Boothe joined 116 other top high school graduates representing the United States and 11 other countries at the prestigious four-week program, now in its 48th year.
The NYSC, located in the Monongahela National Forest integrates scientific programming with opportunities for delegates to explore music, art, and the outdoors.
Each year, scientists from various disciplines travel to the camp to present lectures and lead directed studies. This year's lecture topics included: global warming, genomic medicine, radio astronomy and energy sustainability. Throughout camp, directed studies provided extensive hands-on experiences in specific fields. Delegates had the opportunity to dissect a human hand, discuss bioethics, explore forensic science techniques, and search through the DNA sequence of a genetic disease.
In addition to learning about groundbreaking scientific research, delegates explored their natural surroundings through an extensive outdoor program consisting of hiking, caving, mountain biking and rock climbing. The delegates chose from seminars ranging from Ultimate Frisbee and swing dancing to discussions of philosophy, travel, religion and culture.
"My favorite lecture was the one from the English professor on the language rhetoric of sustainability," Boothe said. "It was new, fresh and superbly delivered."
The National Youth Science Camp is operated by the National Youth Science Foundation. For more information, visit www.nysf.com.