A new program to support natural science educator innovation

Sternberg Science Camps Accelerator

Connecting innovative educators to amazing students!

The Sternberg Museum wants to see you get your amazing youth earth or life science education program idea off the ground! We are deeply committed to creating impactful earth and life science education experiences accessible to students in safe, inclusive settings.

We are currently accepting submissions for 2024! Please read the sections below before clicking to the application form linked at the bottom of the page.

What Sternberg Science Camps is looking for in a successful proposal:

  • Specifying if the program is for middle or high school-age students.
  • Concise description of why you think your program idea would be a successful fit within the Sternberg Science Camps program.
  • If the program will be six days or thirteen days in duration.
  • Connections and other resources you would bring to the table to conduct your program. These include things like personal connections who could help provide access to field areas, behind the scenes student experiences, and other experiential opportunities.

Here's what selected applicants can expect to get:

  • $1,180 per week of camp instructed. (This is contingent on a camp reaching the minimum enrollment of 6 students needed to operate.)
  • Robust mentoring on program design, program operation, and pedogogical practices from Camps Director David Levering.
  • Nationwide marketing for their camp program within the Sternberg Science Camps annual offerings.
  • Promotion of their camp, with their name attached as the lead instructor, on Sternberg Camps social media accounts.
  • Network of past and current staff as well as Camps program student alumni.
  • Logistics support from the start of camp planning through conclusion of the program.
  • Recruitment and assignment of skilled, capable teaching assistants to the camp.

Things you should know:

  • All Camps staff, collaborating institutions and land managers/owners are covered by a comprehensive liability waiver that is a part of eazch student's application packet. 
  • Programs for high school students should be roughly six or thirteen days in duration. Programs for middle schoolers should be no more than six days in duration.
  • We will start 2024 camps on Sunday, June 16th. Our 2024 camps will conclude no later than Friday, August 2nd. Camps typically begin on a Sunday and end on a Friday.
  • Each camp has a six-student enrollment minimum to operate. Our per-camp maximum is ten total students. Accepted camp proposals that are advertised but fail to reach the six student minimum will not be run.
  • We expect to accept around ten total camp proposals for summer of 2024.
  • For 2024, we strongly recommend programs being run in the United States. International programs are acceptable, but will face a much higher level of scrutiny due to increased logistical complexities and costs.
  • While we do everything we can to reach our required minimum of six kids per camp, sometimes camps do fail to hit the enrollment minimum and have to be cancelled. In cases where a camp is cancelled, we are unable to provide financial compensation for staff attached to that program. We will not ask individuals to do additional work on their camp past the accepted application until we know the camp has hit our minimum enrollment target to operate.
  • As our enrollment period usually closes in March of each year, we try to give all staff as much advanced notice as possible regarding if their camp will run or not.
  • For camping trips, the Sternberg Science Camps maintains a robust supply of equipment such as tents, sleeping pads, camping cooking gear, and other essentials for any outdoor education program.
  • Instructors are provided a moderate built-in budget to order supplies specific to their program.

Requirements for individuals applying:

  • Formal degree of Masters of Science or Education completed, or 2+ years into a PhD program, or comparable experience in earth or life science education.
  • Be a United States citizen, or be in the US on a student visa that will still be valid through December 2024, with a US bank account in their name.
  • Be able to pass a US criminal background check.
  • Be willing to participate in an interview with the Camps Director as part of the selection process.
  • Be able to provide a photo of themselves as well as a single paragraph personal bio for our staff page.
  • Be willing and able to engage in our annual social media marketing campaigns to drive enrollment.

Requirements for program submissions:

  • A one-page personal statement of interest.
  • Your academic transcripts. Unofficial is fine.
  • An up to date CV/resume.
  • Fill out the application questionaire in the form linked below. This includes questions about your motivations in science education, and questions about the essentials of your proposed camp program.

Please use the form linked here to submit your program proposal materials!