Openings in GRCC’s forensic chemistry camp expected to fill quickly



Leah Nixon

Director of Communications


May 8, 2014 GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. Grand Rapids Community College’s forensic chemistry summer camp for high schoolers is returning — but openings are expected to fill quickly.

GRCC’s physical sciences department, in collaboration with the National Science Foundation, created the free camp to provide area high school students with the opportunity to use instruments such as gel electrophoresis, infrared spectroscopy, and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry to tackle the chemistry in a simulated “crime.”

Chemistry professor Jennifer Batten, head of the physical sciences department, said the camp is a unique opportunity for students to work with sophisticated, professional equipment.

“I liked using the GC-MS (gas chromatography-mass spectrometry) and actually getting to click on everything and see what was in it,” said a student in last summer’s camp. “We talked about it in my chemistry class a couple years ago, and the teacher said, ‘Well, you’re not going to be able to use one until you’re in college.’ But I actually got to do it and it was a lot of fun.”

This summer’s camp will be held from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday through Friday in two sessions: July 7 to 11 and July 14 to 18. Enrollment is limited to 18 students per camp, and Batten warns that last year’s openings disappeared fast.

For a camp application, click here. Students must also write a 300- to 400-word essay that addresses why they are interested in science, why they would like to attend the camp and what role they think science will play in their future career.

Applications will be accepted until spots are filled; you will be notified about camp acceptance by email within one week of the application being received. Completed application packets should be sent to: Jennifer Batten, Physical Sciences Department, GRCC, 143 Bostwick Ave. NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503. More detailed camp information will be sent to attendees in mid-June.

Grand Rapids Community College, established in 1914, offers opportunities for more than 30,000 students annually in degree courses, certification and training programs, workshops and personal enrichment classes. GRCC holds classes on the downtown Grand Rapids campus as well as several locations throughout Kent and Ottawa counties.