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Academic Camps

Dyer Observers Space Science Camp

The Dyer Observers Space Science Camps support middle-school students in their exploration of the worlds of science, math, engineering and technology, and opens up their minds to future career possibilities in these fields.

Please check out the camp brochure link below for more information on the camps. If your child has a strong interest in astronomy and space science and would like to be a part of the Dyer Observatory Space Science Camps, please download and fill out the application below.

The cost for the 2019 camp is $450. That includes all materials and the transportation, lunch, and tour of the United States Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville. Merit scholarships are not awarded, but financial aid is available to those students who demonstrate financial need. Please include a note with your application.

2019 5th/6th grade camp dates: July 8-12

2019 7th/8th grade camp dates: July 15-19

An informational flier is here:  2019-Summer-Camp-1-PAGE-promo-sheet

Please fill out these registration materials: 2019-Dyer-Summer-Space-Camp-application-materials-all and return them by mail or in person (Dyer Observatory, 1000 Oman Drive, Brentwood TN 37027), email (, or fax to (615) 371-3904. If sending by email or fax, please note that the check is on its way via mail or drop off.

Questions may be directed to Alex. Rockafellar at

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 iD Tech Camps: Hands-On Tech Fun!

Vanderbilt does not endorse nor is affiliated with this event

At iD Tech, kids and teens of all skill levels discover coding, AI, machine learning, film, robotics, and game design, developing the in-demand skills needed to compete in Nashville’s booming startup scene. Business Insider ranked Vanderbilt as one of the best colleges in America.

For 20 years, we’ve guaranteed small class sizes, the best tech-savvy staff, and forward-thinking curriculum, producing stunning results. When you want the best, its iD Tech or nothing.

Dates: Weekly program. Visit website for exact dates and details.

Day Camp or Overnight Camps Available
Ages: 7-17 years old

Visit for details and online specials.

Contact Information: 1-888-709-TECH (8324)

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Vanderbilt Summer Academy (VSA)

2019 VSA Applications will be accepted beginning February 6, 2019.

Application inquiries may be directed to

Check out our catalog for more information!

 VSA serves gifted and high-achieving students in rising grades 7-12 who typically test at the 95th percentile and above in one or multiple areas of the ACT, SAT, or PSAT tests. See “Eligibility” section below for more information on student qualification.

What? VSA is a residential academic program that offers accelerated courses, dynamic recreational activities, and the opportunity for academically gifted students to learn from content experts and each other within a supportive environment.  As a VSA student, you will take accelerated courses with instructors drawn from the wealth of talented faculty and scholars here in the Vanderbilt University and Nashville communities. Outside the classroom, students participate in a variety of evening activities, explore extracurricular enrichment activities and have free time to make new friends.

When? Students attend one of three summer sessions. The dates and length of each session depends on the student’s grade level.

VSA 2019

Session 1: Rising 7th-8th graders
June 9 - 14, 2019
$1,375 - Tuition Deadline: May 3,  Rising 7th & 8th graders

Session 2: Rising 9th-10th graders
June 16  -28, 2019
$2,750 - Tuition Deadline: April 12,  Rising 9th & 10th graders

Session 3: Rising 11th-12th graders
July 7 - 26, 2019
$3,625 Tuition Deadline: April 12,  Rising 11th & 12th graders 

Where? During their stay, VSA students will reside in a residential hall on  The Ingram Commons , where first-year Vanderbilt students live during the academic school year. Courses are held in classrooms across the Vanderbilt University campus, with the majority of courses taking place on the Peabody Campus. Students eat most of their meals in the  Commons Dining Center , a short walk from the residence hall.

Eligibility: Students applying to Vanderbilt Summer Academy must submit qualifying documentation at the time of application. To be eligible for VSA, students may either submit ACT, SAT, or PSAT scores or a recent individual ability/achievement test at the 95th percentile and above in one or more subject areas. In lieu of the above mentioned test scores, students may prefer to submit a portfolio for further assessment and review. For more details about eligible scores and portfolio materials, please see the  VSA How To Apply  page.

Rising 7th Grade Student? Rising 7th grade students have the option to attend VSA Session I, where they will spend 5 days and 5 nights living and learning on the Vanderbilt campus.If you are looking for an immersive non-residential option, PTY also offers Career Connections, a day program for rising 7th graders at SAVY.  Click here  for more information about Career Connections at SAVY courses. Rising 7th grade students can attend both the residential VSA and day Career Connections program. Call the PTY office for more information on how to apply for one or both programs.

Contact Information: 
Name: John Moses Girdler
Phone: (615) 322-8261

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Summer Academy at Vanderbilt for the Young (SAVY)

Who? Gifted students in Kindergarten and grades 1–6 (Summer, rising 1-6) who typically test at the 95th percentile and above on either verbal or nonverbal sections of academic achievement or ability tests. Students in rising 7th grade are eligible to participate in Career Connections at SAVY, a new program within SAVY designed specifically for this age group. Click here or more information about Career Connections at SAVY and other summer opportunities for rising 7th graders. See “Eligibility” section below for more information on student qualification for SAVY or Career Connections.

What? Classes are designed for the academically talented and motivated learner. SAVY offers accelerated courses led by Vanderbilt professors, master teachers, and graduate students. Class size is limited to approximately 14 students for grades K-2 (grades 1-3 in the summer) and 16 students for grades 3-6 (grades 4-7 in the summer). Summer SAVY 2017 will offer six, one-week sessions. Course offerings differ per session. Click here to see the courses for our upcoming sessions!

When? Spring 2019 classes are held for six consecutive Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. Summer classes are week-long sessions during June and July, Monday through Friday from 8:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. Students may register for one or more sessions. Summer SAVY 2019 will offer six, one-week sessions. Course offerings differ per session.

Summer 2019 SAVY

Session 1: June 10-14

Session 2: June 17-21

Session 3: June 24-28

Session 4: July 8-12

Session 5: July 15-19

Session 6: July 22-26

 On the Peabody Campus of Vanderbilt University.

Eligibility: Students who typically test at around the 95th percentile and above on a standardized achievement or on an ability test are eligible to participate in SAVY courses in their area(s) of strength. We accept any standardized achievement or ability test including, but not limited to, the following: RIAS, CogAT, TCAP, ERB, Stanford Achievement Test, OLSAT, Woodcock Johnson, WISC IV. Out-of-level standardized assessments (e.g. Explore, SCAT) are also accepted. While scores around the 95th percentile are typically a strong indication that SAVY is an appropriate curriculum match for a student, feel free to contact the SAVY office for questions about scores that do not meet these criteria, as alternative documentation may be acceptable. Returning SAVY students do not need to resubmit test scores unless their scores are more than three years old. Students without test scores should work with their schools to obtain documentation of their assessments.

Contact Information:
Phone: (615) 322-8261

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 STEM Education for Girls

Vanderbilt does not endorse nor is affiliated with this event

Our Center for STEM Education for Girls offers a unique opportunity for rising 7th - 12th grade girls in the greater Nashville area to attend our research-based STEM Summer Institute. We offer two one-week camps for rising 7th and 8th graders (June 3-7, June 10-14) and one two-week camps for rising 9th-12th graders (June 3-14).  We offer great opportunity for scholarships and transportation for those who need it most.  

Date:  June 3-7 and June 10 - 14
Grade/age : Rising 7th and 8th Graders
Time:  Monday - Friday; 9:00 am - 4:00 pm 
Cost:  $350 / week 
Snacks and lunch provided

Date :  June 3 - 14, 2019
Grade/age: Rising 9th through 12th Graders
Time:  Monday - Friday; 9:00 am - 4:00 pm 
Cost:  $700 / two week session
Snacks and lunch provided

Please contact Dr. Barbara Bell, Director of Center for STEM Education for Girls, or 615-346-0110.

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Capitol Debate Summer Camp

Vanderbilt does not endorse nor is affiliated with this event

At Middle School Debate Camp level, students will learn the fundamentals of public speaking and argumentation, enabling them to develop core presentation and debating skills that boost confidence and self-esteem. Students at the High School Debate Camp level will work on effective public speaking and argumentation, allowing them to further advance their presentation and debate skills to prepare them for the real world. The camp offers students the chance to improve their communication skills in a safe and secure environment while having fun!  Complete description »

The curricula of our debate camps aim to equip children with the ability to structure arguments, prepare debate cases, research evidence, write rebuttal briefs, deliver speeches and refute opponents. They prepare students to give outstanding speeches in class, perform in a school debate or join their high school debate teams, Model United Nations teams or speech teams.

Not only will Capitol Debate students learn debating skills; they will feel an increase in self-worth, learn critical thinking skills and improve communication with their peers.

Date: June 1 - June 13, 2019 
Time: Commuter and residential options available
Cost: $2349 if registered by January 31
Grade/age: Entering 6th-12th grade

Contact Name: Jacqueline Kelleher or Brian Fish
Contact Phone800.450.5012 ext 1

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STEM Exploration Experience for Kids (SEEK)

Location TBA
Rising 1st - 6th Graders
9:00 am - 3:00 pm

Each Weekly Session $350 (includes $35 non-refundable application fee)
Discounts and financial aid are available upon eligibility and request. In addition, there is before and after care available for $10 per day.

Amazing Animals:  Bugs, Bullfrogs, Bluebirds & More

Date : June 3 - 7, 2019
Learn all about the lives of your favorite critters. Be creeped out by insects, captivated by sea creatures, and squawk with the birds. This week will cover topics related to biology and animal behavior through observation, experimentation, and other engaging activities.

Engineering for Everyone!
Date:  June 10 - 14, 2019
During this week, we will take a tour through the world of engineering. We’ll explore civil, mechanical, structural, environmental, aerospace, materials, and biomedical engineering! Think this sounds boring? Think again! We’ll be building catapults, bridges, buildings to withstand earthquakes, and all sorts of other fun things as we spend each day in the life of a different engineer!

Cool Chemistry:  Radical Reactions
Date:  June 17 - 21, 2019
From the kitchen to the great outdoors, chemistry is everywhere! From cooking and cleaning in the home to going to the doctor and protecting the environment, chemistry is all around us! This week is all about learning how chemistry works in medicine, in forensics, and in our daily lives. Campers will explore chemistry in the laboratory, the home, and in the environment around us!

Rockin' Robotics!
Date:  June 24 - 28, 2019
Will robots take over the world? Have they already? In this camp session, we will explore the world of robotics and learn how to build and program simple robots. Campers will learn how to connect power sources, motors, lights, and code together to create robots that can explore their environment!

Contact Name: Joe Lopez
Contact Phone: 615-322-7140

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