UAA Chugiak-Eagle River Campus to host Kids' College this summer

The UAA Chugiak-Eagle River Campus (CERC) will host Kids’ College in June for youth and teens ages 11 to 14.

Kids’ College, offered through UAA Continuing Education, provides courses for students in art, language, culinary and computer technology for students. In recent years, CERC has partnered with Continuing Education to host summer reading programs for students of all ages and anticipates the introduction of Kids’ College as well.

Alex Lehman, left, and Simon Mitchell work on one of their
projects during the creative coding class at
UAA Continuing Education Kids’ College in summer 2015.
(Photo by Theodore Kincaid/University of Alaska Anchorage)
“We’re excited to bring these innovative experiences in technology to Eagle River,” said Continuing Education Director Dana Thorp Patterson.

Students will have the opportunity to enroll in creative learning classes in video game animation and Minecraft while building fundamental skills in basic scripting, coding and physics. The $225 half-day courses will run at CERC this June with parallel course offerings available through June and July in Anchorage. Anchorage courses are available for youth as young as 9.

“I can't even express how excited we are about the UAA Kids’ College program,” said Willow Peyton, whose son attended Kids’ College in summer 2015. “This program cultivates the inner geek and allows safe exploration of the tech world we are living in. The instructors were very knowledgeable and fun.”

Kids’ College instructor John Sanders, Syracuse University doctoral student and Eagle River High School alumnus, believes in the influence of fun in education. He earned dual bachelor’s degrees in comparative literature and digital humanities pedagogy and game scholarship from the University of Massachusetts in 2015.

“When students are in a position where they’re not crippled by the fear of failure, they can take a lot more risks and have a bit more fun with what they’re doing,” said Sanders. “This leads to a really positive atmosphere of learning and some truly awesome games.”

According to Thorp Patterson, students enrolled in youth programs experience a higher education learning environment with a diverse group of peers. More than 280 students from Wasilla, Palmer, Chugiak, Eagle River, Anchorage and Girdwood were enrolled in Kids’ College in 2015. The students received professional instruction in a hands-on setting and were introduced to the concept of lifelong learning in a safe, supervised classroom.

UAA Continuing Education, part of the Community & Technical College, offers youth and teen programming throughout the year at the University Center in Anchorage and the Chugiak-Eagle River Campus. Regular course options include Babysitter Training, Introduction to CPR, ACT Test Prep, languages and culinary classes.

To register for Kids' College, visit Explore more lifelong learning opportunities in the Chugiak-Eagle River community with for-credit and non-credit classes by visiting

Story by Mariah Olney, Communications Coordinator, UAA Chugiak-Eagle River Campus

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UAA Chugiak-Eagle River Campus to host Kids' College this summer
UAA Chugiak-Eagle River Campus to host Kids' College this summer
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