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October 21, 2011 > Academic talent search

Academic talent search

By Suzanne Ortt
Photos By Phie Chin

Each year since 1979, The Johns Hopkins University Center for Talented Youth (CTY) has recognized academically able students in grades 2 - 8. More than twenty from the Tri-City area and over one hundred fifty East Bay students in all from the current crop of bright youths were honored at award ceremonies held Saturday, October 1 and Sunday, October 2, at California State University East Bay in Hayward.

Worldwide, more than 50,000 students participated in the CTY's Talent Search this year. Twenty-five to thirty percent (9,500 students) were chosen to receive awards. Test results and grades were two of the considerations in the award selections. Other awardees were chosen from the Summer Programs.

One CTY goal is to provide parents with a picture of their child's academic prowess. Additionally, children earn recognition through the awards ceremonies. The CTY holds award ceremonies around the country, several in California.

Johns Hopkins also conducts summer programs with camps available for different grade levels. Eligibility is determined by the grade level completed and scores on the CTY School and College Ability Test (SCAT); camps are on both the east and west coasts. The east has day camps and on the west, the camps are residential.

One student who typifies the winners is Cameron Chin, a Union City resident and student in the Head-Royce School, who received his award on Sunday. Chin attended a three-week summer camp at Stanford University this past June. His parents, Albert and Phie Chin, approached his attendance with trepidation because he had not been away from home that long before.

According to the Chins, they were most impressed with meeting the enthusiastic staff and seeing the beautiful campus. And, the best result was their son's reaction to his camp. He came home raving about meeting students from different countries and backgrounds as well as the Bay Area, and expressed his excitement about the classes. The class of math and logic, taught by instructor Paul Juarez was so engaging that Chin did not object to being in class from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., five days a week for three weeks. He wants to return next summer and is motivated to go to college. Now the Chins know the experience was worthwhile.

For Cameron Chin's take on summer camp, "awesome" is the key word. The serious work was his math class, Inductive and Deductive Reasoning, emphasizing logic, reasoning, and Pascal's Triangle. One day his class made the triangle out of envelopes. Fun activities were held Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday, which included Ultimate Frisbee, Orbit Ball and other fun stuff. Friday nights were social nights: themes were Rubik's Cube, Beach Party, and Hollywood. Weekend events ranged from CTY Royale, (a casino basically), CTY Olympics, movies, and The Amazing Race, a race to find who kidnapped Kermit. Fortunately, Kermit was retrieved a few days later.

Chin also gave Stanford's food four stars. He especially loved the Korean spareribs.

Johns Hopkins CTY does an annual search and the summer camps are held each year. For more information about CTY programs and the application process, please visit the website: www.cty.jhu.edu/.

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