LDS youth participate in one of BYU's EFY summer sessions. (Photo by Breanna Olaveson.)
LDS youth participate in one of BYU’s EFY summer sessions. (Photo by Breanna Olaveson)

The average age on BYU’s campus drops significantly during the summer months, but it’s not just because of EFY. BYU summer camps bring thousands of teenagers with interests as diverse as they are to campus every summer.

With dozens of specialized camps on campus, you’re sure to find something for every teenager in your life. Here’s a list of BYU camps for every kid.

The spiritual kid

Even with so many different camps on campus, Especially For Youth, EFY, brings the most teenagers to Provo — about 30,000 every year. EFY is a five-day overnight program for youth that aims to strengthen testimonies of Jesus Christ through fun and spiritual activities. These activities include daily scripture study and devotionals, family home evening, dances, games night, a musical program, testimony meeting, variety show, daily classes and more.

EFY sessions are held across the United States throughout the summer, but the program at BYU is the largest. One-day and stay-at-home options are available in some areas.

If your teenager is looking for a more focused approach to spiritual learning, BYU also offers the newly created mission ready campThe weeklong program helps youth better prepare for missionary service by combining a focused learning experience with fun and uplifting social activities. All classes and workshops are taught by returned missionaries, who answer questions youth might have as they prepare to enter the mission field. The classes and activities help youth strengthen their testimonies, increase their knowledge of the scriptures and gain the study and teaching skills necessary in the mission field.

The athlete

BYU’s strong athletic programs train their athletes early. Summer sports camps bring student athletes from around the United States to experience BYU athletics as they train on campus, meet BYU coaches and athletes, stay in BYU dorms and eat in the cafeteria while improving their skills.

BYU offers the following sports camps: all sport, baseball, boys basketball, girls basketball, cheer and dance, cross country, diving, football, golf, gymnastics, lacrosse, rugby, soccer, softball, speed and power, swimming, tennis, track and field and volleyball. Cubs camps for younger kids and fathers and sons camps are also available.

The dancer

BYU dance camps are intensive training opportunities for dancers in all genres. Many require an audition prior to admittance. Dance camps are held from mid-June to mid-August, with competition seasons and Children’s Creative Dance lasting through the school year.

The following dance camps are available at BYU: Youth DanceSport Summer, International Folk Dance, Cougar Clogging Classic, Contemporary Dance Intensive (formerly Modern Dance and Jazz), Intermediate Ballet, Dance Medley, Advanced Ballet, Adult Ballroom and Youth Ballroom.

The musician

The BYU School of Music’s annual Young Musicians’ SummerFestival will be June 15–21, 2014. SummerFestival is a six–day camp for instrumentalists and vocalists ages 14–18.

SummerFestival offers camp participants instruction in more than 20 instruments and in voice—though each participant must choose only one to focus on during the festival. School of Music faculty and guest instructors teach sessions in classical, big band, jazz, blues and other styles at both intermediate and advanced levels.

SummerFestival begins with auditions for sectionals, continues with rehearsals, literature, theory, master classes and practice times, and finishes with participant concerts on the weekend. Evening activities include concerts, dances, barbecues, movies and more.

The drama queen

The 2014 BYU Theatre Workshop will be June 30–July 12. High school actors of all experience levels are invited to build and improve their theatre skills as they learn from talented instructors and acting professionals.

The workshop includes classroom and hands-on instruction in master classes, workshops and rehearsals. Daily classes are integrated into rehearsals for the final show “The Fantasticks” and include acting, music and choreography. Workshops vary from year to year but may include auditioning, stage makeup, improv, dialects, costumes, stage combat and more.

The BYU Young Ambassadors also hosts a five-day camp for musical dance theatre training. At this camp, participants rehearse with members of BYU’s Young Ambassadors and learn from BYU’s performance directors Randy Boothe and Janielle Christensen. The camp includes small-group instruction to help teenagers become better performers as they develop strong technique in dance, voice and stage presence.

The writer

BYU offers a wide variety of writing camps for youth with interests in various genres. The summer begins with a sci-fi and fantasy camp in April and continues through the summer, finishing with a camp in early August for exploring art through writing.

Writing camps in 2014 include the following: Sci-fi and Fantasy, The Nature of Writing, Grammar Wings: Make Your Writing Soar, The Authors Club, Hackasaurs, Reel in Creativity, Marking Memories (for adults), Storm the Gates!: How to Write Your Way Into College and Exploring Art Through Writing.

The scholar

If the teenager in your life is a high academic achiever, there’s a camp for that too. Options like Late Summer Honors (for incoming BYU freshmen), ACT College Prep CampYCREATE (for teenagers interested in the BYU Communications Program) and Chip Camp (for middle schoolers interested in science, technology, engineering and math) appeal to teenagers who want to enhance their academic careers.

The leader

BYU recently announced the creation of a new camp, Habits for Life, which is based on the principles of Stephen R. Covey’s “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.”

The camp will be in three one-week sessions and is designed to help youth practice life skills and habits that will help them be more effective leaders.

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