Summer camp. The mere thought conjures up images of mosquitoes, forests, and hiking trips. From rickety old cabins and leaky tents to the thought of a drill sergeant dictator for a counselor, the words "summer camp" don't tend to leave very many teens with warm fuzzy thoughts. There is a camp in New York City working to break that stereotypical image.
Passport New York City camps, held in the heart of New York, offer students ages 13-17 a unique camp environment. Focusing on building skills in five of the hottest, most popular industries, the folks at the 92nd street YMCA have developed a new idea for summer camp. This three week long camp gives students the opportunity to explore the Culinary Arts, Music Industry, Film, Fashion, and Musical Theater while living in the city.
Passport NYC campers will learn and work in real-life situations in order to hone their skills. Whether designing a new clothing line or working in a high energy kitchen, this hands-on learning experience provides an opportunity not found at a normal summer camp. Described by the camp director as reality TV minus the cameras, students will have the opportunity to learn from some of the very best each industry has to offer.
Of course, there is more to camp than just what the student can learn. Passport NYC prides itself on offering community service projects to all campers. Students can earn community service hours by working in an urban garden, visiting with elderly shut ins and nursing homes, and a variety of other activities. From working with the homeless to reaching out to someone in need, campers will learn that there is more to life than work and it is our obligation to give back to the community around us.
For many parents, especially those who come from more rural areas, the idea of sending their teen to New York to live for three weeks can be a little unnerving. Passport NYC camps take great security very seriously. One of the elements of this type of camp is to teach students how to use public transportation to navigate a large city. From reading maps and time tables to finding the best way to get somewhere, campers are given skills they can use in any large city in the world. Before heading out for the day, campers are instructed on which route to take, what mode of transportation to take, and even what to do if they make a mistake. Campers always travel in groups, usually with a staff member to make sure everyone gets where they need to go.
Passport New York City has revolutionized the camping experience. Gone are the ideas of rising at the crack of dawn to spend the day in the woods eating s'mores. From community outreach, to discovering the artist from within, campers will enjoy a unique experience in one of the world's most famous cities so if ever they would go to study abroad these kids sure have what it takes and can even compete with the British passport services in terms of commitment and elegance in the way they help their communities. With Passport NYC, students will learn how to work, live, and thrive in a 21st century world building skills that will last them a lifetime.