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Vanderbilt weekend program for gifted youth now taking applications Oct. 10-11 program designed for 7th-10th graders

Sep. 16, 2009, 3:24 PM

Academically talented 7th through 10th graders will have a chance to expand their horizons, intellectually and socially, in an overnight Vanderbilt program this fall specifically designed for gifted students. Applications are currently being accepted for the program, Weekend Academy at Vanderbilt University or WAVU, which will take place Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 10-11.

“At Vanderbilt Programs for Talented Youth, we seek to develop talent in gifted students and those who work with them. Adolescence is an important time for developing talent, and WAVU provides a mechanism for this development,” Tamra Stambaugh, director of Programs for Talented Youth and research assistant professor in special education, said. “Students enjoy the intellectual and social benefits of being in a classroom with their academic peers and have an opportunity to work closely with a content expert in a field of mutual interest. These early experiences can be life changing.”

This fall’s classes include “It’s a Mystery,” “Bioethics” and “Math and Music” for 7th and 8th graders and “Consumerism in American Society” and “Inside the Mind” for 9th and 10th graders.

Gifted students in 7th through 10th grade, specifically students who test at the 95th percentile and above on a standardized achievement or ability tests, are encouraged to apply. Classes comprise 12 to 15 students and are held on the Vanderbilt University campus.

WAVU gives students a taste of college life. Students work with expert Vanderbilt scholars, who teach WAVU classes. The students spend the night in residence at the Scarritt-Bennett Center adjacent to the Vanderbilt campus. They also have an opportunity to take a campus tour and interact with current Vanderbilt students who serve as residential proctors and mentors during the weekend.

All WAVU classes are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Applications are due by Sept. 25; applicants will be notified of their admission decision no later than Oct. 2.

The cost of the program is $400, which includes the academic course, classroom materials, meals and overnight accommodations. Need-based financial assistance is available. WAVU applications are available online at and may be requested by calling (615) 322-8261 or by e-mailing

Vanderbilt Programs for Talented Youth has been serving the needs of highly gifted 7th-12th grade students from across the nation and abroad since 2000. Weekend Academy at Vanderbilt University was launched in the spring of 2007. For more information about Vanderbilt Programs for Talented Youth’s year-round offerings, visit

Media Contact: Melanie Moran, (615) 322-NEWS

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