With cameras in hand, participants in a PartnerCorps STEM Camp practiced making photo magic Tuesday at Madison Southern High School.

Some campers clamored around light boxes on tables while others focused on posing and shooting portraits of others. Earlier in the day, participates had engaged in a lesson on photo editing.

Those practicing ranged in various skill levels. Camper Ahmad Lahamer said he has gotten much better with cameras since attending, and has been more interested in the process than he had initially anticipated. Katelyn Bolin, who cited photography as a hobby she enjoys with her mother, said she has been focused on honing her editing and lighting skills, and just might have something to take back and teach mom.

According to Cody Elliot of AmeriCorps, of which PartnerCorps is a part, the camp the children participated in Tuesday blends technology and creativity through use of photography.

“We teach kids how to properly use a camera, create better photographs and bring out their creative side,” he explained. “We also work on composition and posing, both for people and objects. We try to do what we can to unleash their imagination.”

The camera camp is one of several provided in partnership between Berea College’s Partners for Education and the Novelis Aluminum Cooperation. The collaboration provides students in Madison County with camps focused on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

Elliot noted cameras fall into the technology category and that learning about photography can be not only fun but also beneficial to many future careers the campers might choose.

Project director Darla Pearson said Berea Partners for Education has been hosting STEM camps for several years in an effort to foster excitement about STEM and corresponding career paths.

Upcoming camps include one based on junkyard engineering and a Madison Southern High School boot camp for incoming freshman.

Thanks to Novelis’ donation, students will attend the camps free of charge.

For information on upcoming camps, contact Pearson at 859-985-3271 or email darla_pearson@berea.edu.

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