TCC Saturday Enrichment Program

If you were in a Virginia Beach middle school, chances are that in the 6th and 7th grades you received a little flier about a Saturday Enrichment Program at TCC. I bet a ton of you saw something about classes on a Saturday and tossed that shit before your parents could get on it, but the nerdiest of the nerds (a.k.a. kids who were nerdy even among their KLMS peers) actually read the thing and thought, “ooo that sounds kind of interesting.”

You could choose one of three tracks: Physical Science, Science and Technology, and Biological and Chemical Sciences. You indicated your preferences and got entered into a lottery and, if you were lucky, you got put into the track you wanted along with all of your nerdy friends. I went both years, although I can't remember which programs I was in. I'm guessing I was in Physical Science one year and Science and Technology the other.

Things that I do remember, though mostly a little vaguely:

  • learning AutoCAD, mostly using the keyboard / command line
  • creating slideshows in AutoCAD using some very basic scripting
  • doing some very, very primitive 3D rendering, also in AutoCAD
  • being taught the importance of grounding yourself when working on computers
  • attempting to memorize all the equations for conic sections
  • being shown a disgusting black smoker lung (quite enough reason to be a non-smoker for life)
  • going to the NOAA Chesapeake Bay headquarters and learning how to read weather maps
  • measuring water depth and creating topographic maps of the river/bay bed
  • testing water and netting sea life on a boat
Let's face it - those are some pretty complex topics for a bunch of 11 year olds. It was also a slap in the face when, 6 years later, I had to take Magnet Technology Foundations and was forced to sit through what appeared to be AutoCAD for Massive Idiots Who Don't Understand the Command Line. That doesn't mean my classmates were all massive idiots - it was just the way it was taught. If you know the class I am talking about, you know exactly what I mean.

Gratuitous picture so the post isn't all text:


anne said...

How telling is it that I fuzzily remember the details you've listed about the Saturday Enrichment Program, but VIVIDLY remember SNACKTIME!!! As a middle schooler armed with quarters, vending machines within in arms reach, and no rain-on-parade parents to prevent me from reaching sugar highs of staggering proportion, one can imagine the unbridled junk-gluttony that ensued...

Helen said...

SNACKTIME!!!!! I can't believe I forgot that! Vending machines + no parents = glory.

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