Hutchison School's Center for Excellence offers educational enrichment for the community
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Summer camp offerings
Campers will have it made in the shade this summer at Hutchison’s SPARK Day Camp and CFE summer programs, which includes everything from water sports and foreign language classes to robot and computer construction. Parents have it made too, because the summer programs run until August 9th.
SPARK is a traditional co-ed day camp with swimming, fishing, canoeing, sports, drama, music, dance, computers, and arts and crafts. CFE also offers a rich variety of skill-building workshops, which include creating video games and toys; making potions and playing quidditch with other Harry Potter fanatics; a variety of sports, visual and performing arts; plus gardening, cooking, and more. Campers can also split their day and take advantage of both programs.
CFE sustains itself through class fees but partners with community organization, too. For example, Delta Girls Rock Camp receives support from Memphis Music and Girls Confidence Coalition is sponsored in part by the national sorority Kappa Delta. Ana Romero, a Hutchison sophomore, has been active in Arts Academy and CFE classes since kindergarten, where she’s taken everything from tap and ballet to violin and orchestra.
“I’m not athletically gifted at all,” she admits. But she is musical and currently the orchestra manager. “It’s a wonderful program,” Romero tells me. “It has definitely helped me with time-management skills, and it’s given me an outlet for my creativity.”
The center also offers free or low-cost events throughout the year, if the programs are an important experience for the community, says Zerwig Ford. Free family activities include Container Gardening on Hutchison’s organic farm; A Taste of China, learning about Chinese language and culture through hands-on experiences; and Art for Heart Sake, making art projects that are hung in special places around Memphis, such as Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital, and the Salvation Army’s Kroc Center.Romero is grateful to her parents for supporting her love of the arts. “It’s a gift that my parents give me,” she says. The mature 16-year-old says she has noticed that arts are usually the first thing to be cut in many schools. “Arts are generally underappreciated in high school, but not here; arts are a part of everyday life.”