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The Rolla Daily News - Rolla, MO
  • Having a blast

  • S&T holds explosives camp for high-schoolers
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  • Some high school students spend a week of their summer vacation at a sports camp or perhaps an arts or theater camp.
    However, 17 high school juniors and seniors have spent this past week at the nation's one and only Explosives Camp held at Missouri University of Science and Technology's  Experimental Mine.
    Students came from  across the nation to learn, among other things, the use of dynamite and a behind-the-scenes look at fireworks.
    "I want to study mining," said 17-year-old Elizabeth Sanders from Kansas City. Both her parents went to Missouri S&T and she hopes to follow in their footsteps.
    Students had to apply for the camp by submitting a one-page resume, a letter of recommendation from a high school teacher or counselor and a 500-word essay on why they are interested in a career in explosives.
    On Wednesday afternoon, Paul Worsey, professor of mining and nuclear engineering, was going over the fine art of demolishing a steel bridge. He has been a driving force behind the camp since its inception in 2004.  Besides classroom time, each day is chock full of field trips and hands-on experience.
    "Each year we take the kids out to Capital Quarries," Worsey said. The quarry north of Rolla along with its explosives supplier, Buckley Powder, are major supporters of both the mining program and the Explosive Camp at S&T.
    Jake Carlson from Tulsa, Oklahoma, told the Daily News that he stumbled upon this unique camp through Wikipedia. "This has been great," he said.
    Brandon Koebbie, an explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) specialist, came up from Fort Hood, Texas, to the camp. "I have been so impressed with these kids," said the Army specialist. "These are our future explosive engineers."
    The camp will offer one more session, starting next week — June 22 to 27.

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