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IBX STEM summer camp returns in-person after the pandemic

Updated: Jun. 10, 2021 at 7:17 PM EDT
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WASHINGTON, N.C. (WITN) - The Inner Banks STEM Center is holding its aviation summer camp in-person this year after it was unable to last year due to COVID-19.

Alvin Powell is the counselor of the summer camp which teaches kids a wide range of aviation topics including aerodynamics, monitor readings, drone pilot training, and how to fly small training planes.

STEM Camp held in person again.
STEM Camp held in person again.(Deric Rush)

Thursday, children sanded styrofoam into the shapes of airplane wings then tested their wings for aerodynamics in a wind simulator.

Powell’s son Desmond Powell is a retired US Air Force Reserve pilot and is currently a pilot for UPS shipping company. They feel that it’s not only important to teach and enhance the education surrounding STEM, they feel it’s also important to give children hope.

“With the pandemic occurring, the kids kind of lost their focus. Some gave up hope. All they could see was negativity around them. So we’ve focused on restoring that hope or at least minimizing the loss of it,” said Alvin Powell.

“Some people are more textual, they need to touch things. So, having an in-person program like this allows for the full spectrum of comprehension to be touched not just the distanced learning,” Said Desmond Powell.

Campers like Hannah Mosher, and Camp Counselors like Jessica Williams are both excited to be back at camp in person this year.

“It’s not just a normal classroom setting so you get to do more fun stuff that’s like educational, but you’re still having fun with it at the same time,” said Mosher.

“It’s really interesting to see students grow over the course of our camp. Some of the students come in and are like I have no desire to do any of this. I’m not interested in any of it and then by the end of it they’re like, hey I’m flying a plane, I love this, it’s fun,” said Williams.

The campers will spend over 5 hours training on flight simulators, once they’ve successfully completed simulation training they will be cleared to practice flying small training planes at the Washington-Warren Airport.

The Inner STEM Center is a non-profit organization that recently gained a partner for sponsorship from North Carolina A&T State University. The center teaches courses on aviation as well as boating and nautical navigation and operation while using Computer-Aided Design, or, “CAD” software.

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