Michigan Tech Summer Youth Programs Celebrate 50th Anniversary


Since 1972, Michigan Tech’s Summer Youth Programs (SYP) have provided hands-on educational explorations to tens of thousands of middle and high school students around the world.

Each year, SYP attracts an average of 1,100 attendees to the Michigan Technological University campus, many of whom become Michigan Tech students. In fact, approximately
10% of currently enrolled students at MTU are former SYP.

“SYP started a long chain of reactions that led me to where I am today,” said Magann Dykema, who participated in 2012 and 2013. “I took the Engineering Scholars program in high school as a way understand the world of engineering better because I loved math. After my first summer, I fell in love with Michigan Tech and Keweenaw. I came back the following summer for the National Institute of summer of transportation in order to dive deeper into the field of civil engineering.All of this helped me decide that I wanted to attend Michigan Tech and get a degree in civil engineering.

Participants of SYP’s Women in Engineering program showcase their casting and forging projects.

SYP’s first goal was to provide opportunities for traditionally underrepresented students in STEM, such as through its flagship Women in Engineering program. While early awareness and access are still core parts of its mission, SYP rises now to meet the challenges of tomorrow, delivering new programming focused on society’s social, environmental and technological needs over the next 10 years. years. In 2022, SYP will feature 72 explorations on topics such as Climate and Sustainability, Economic Espionage, and Esports: Content Creation.

Of course, it’s the instructors who make SYP a truly transformative experience. Participants often cite the student-to-instructor ratio of 12 to 1 and the mentorship offered in the classroom as characteristics of their experience. Likewise, teaching for SYP is an opportunity to make a difference. As former Engineering 101 teacher Colleen Hanson (Carbary) said, “I have found extreme satisfaction in helping young minds open up to science and engineering. It was so amazing to watch them grow.

Those who have participated in SYP as participants, instructors or staff members are invited to share their stories through the Humans of SYP campaign. Highlights will be shared weekly on social media ahead of the 50th anniversary celebration in summer 2022.

Michigan Technological University is a public research university founded in 1885 in Houghton, Michigan, and enrolls more than 7,000 students from 55 countries around the world. Consistently ranked among the top universities in the nation for return on investment, the University offers more than 125 undergraduate and graduate programs in science and technology, engineering, computer science, forestry, business and economics, health professions, science humanities, mathematics, social sciences, and the arts. The rural campus is located a few miles from Lake Superior in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, providing year-round opportunities for outdoor adventure.


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