Summer camps wrap up with success

Katya Tarabrina, Blue M Organizations Editor

It’s common for summer to be associated with vacation time, but for many Manhattan High students it is the beginning of preparing for their next year by attending camp.

Summer activities vary from camp to camp, depending on their activity focus, such as debate practicing debating and band camp practicing on their instruments. Sports camps, for instance, practice athletic activities such as drills, running and stretches to make sure they are prepared to get back to the competition season.

Junior Mario Ceycedo attended football camp as a refresher for getting back on the field.

“Getting to play … it was like I learned a lot during [football camp],” Ceycedo said. “It’s always nice to … refresh your memory because I forgot a lot of stuff.” 

Debate member senior Tanya Singh, who attended debate camp at MHS this summer, also jump-started her forgotten debate knowledge over the summer.

“I really enjoyed it,” Signh said. “I’d say that it’s helped inform me on the topic and refresh my debate knowledge.”

Many camps have been around for years, but some had their first session ever. One such camp was Manhattan High’s dance camp. Junior Haylee Davis attended so her and other members could prepare for the pep rally, practice technique and sideline dances.
“[Dance camp] was very tiring but we got a lot of work done,” Davis said. “It’s going to help us be better prepared during the school year.”

Sports teams are not the only participants of camps who could use some time to remember what they’re good at. Other camps such as Girls and Boys State help students improve resumes and even explore their full potentials.

Senior Elizabeth Kim attended Girls State and Girls Nation this summer — both of which are all-girls activities only available to juniors going into their senior year of high school. It includes politically-inclined students from all over Kansas together. Kim is the first delegate from Manhattan to attend Girls Nation. 

“I don’t think I truly understood the definition of women empowerment until I went to these camps,” Kim said. 

Not only did Kim learn a lot about running a community, but became aware of what she wanted to do after high school.

“The main takeaway for me is the fact that I do want to go into political science as a career,” Kim said. 

Though sometimes stressful, students also felt a sense of improvement as well as group actualization due to the camps.

Tenant drums player senior Nathan Pickands, who attended the band camp from morning to afternoon, saw this in his band community.

“Everything feels more rushed. However, everything also feels like there’s a lot more potential this year,” Pickands said. ”[It felt like] that if we really work at it that all of this year will be a much bigger pay off than last year.” 

Certain camps also required students to travel out of state, such as junior Claudia De Leon who traveled for 20 hours for Baptist Christian Power of 2 Youth church camp. 

“I liked it there were a lot of new people I met most of them were friendly,” De Leon said. “I got a good godly experience out of it and it helped me grow in the Lord.”

Summer is a time to explore opportunity and positive experiences for Manhattan High, especially as many plan to attend again in the following summer.

“It was really cool to just get back into that groove,” Pickands said.