Meet the Crew

Every summer, hundreds of students from all over the world descend on the Cosmosphere—and an amazing team of enthusiastic, caring, amazing individuals guide them along their incredible journeys.

Brett Arndt
Brett Arndt

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Jordan Appel-Benton
Jordan Appel-Benton

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Brady Bird
Brady Bird

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Ben Bogner
Ben Bogner

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Molly Bovos
Molly Bovos

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Maggie Brown
Maggie Brown

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Jaron Caffrey
Jaron Caffrey

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Mariana Calvo
Mariana Calvo

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Adrienne Deal
Adrienne Deal

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Rebecca Winder
Rebecca Winder

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Hannah Farney
Hannah Farney

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Jared Goering
Jared Goering

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Scott Hawklyn
Scott Hawklyn

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Kim Herron
Kim Herron

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Savannah Kipfer
Savannah Kipfer

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Bret Kirkland
Bret Kirkland

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Courtney Klassen
Courtney Klassen

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Blake Lee
Blake Lee

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Megan Linke
Megan Linke

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Gabriel Loaeza
Gabriel Loaeza

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Marcie McKinnell
Marcie McKinnell

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Ashley Mefford
Ashley Mefford

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Mary Charlotte Meredith
Mary Charlotte Meredith

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Henry Miller
Henry Miller

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Madelyn Page
Madelyn Page

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Seth Peery
Seth Peery

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Rory Pfister
Rory Pfister

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Jackie Rech
Jackie Rech

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Michelle Snyder
Michelle Snyder

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Spencer Steinert
Spencer Steinert

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Melissae Stiles
Melissae Stiles

Cosmosphere Camp Director

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Tyler Stone
Tyler Stone

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Allison Sutherland
Allison Sutherland

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Alexis Veliz
Alexis Veliz

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Sam Wilson
Sam Wilson

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Seth Zastrow
Seth Zastrow

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

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Melissae Stiles
Melissae Stiles

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Hometown: Corvallis, Montana

Are you currently in school? Yes I'm a teacher

If yes, what is your area of study: Science

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I loved the museum and enjoy working with youth.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Trying new activities with campers.

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? Develop or maintain a great camp atmosphere that helps campers get excited about STEM disciplines.

Michelle Snyder
Michelle Snyder

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Hometown: Goddard, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Masters in history

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere Camp? I always wanted to do something with the Cosmosphere. My family came to Hutchinson every Christmas during my childhood to stay at the Holiday Inn/Ramada Inn with the big pool in it and go to the Cosmosphere. My first memory of life was my father and I looking at the Moon rock together. I started as a volunteer for Space Out Saturday. Chuck (previous Education employee) suggested to Tracey (Vice President of Education) that I would make a good part-time employee. I owe my employment here to Chuck.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Learning every part of the Education department.

Marcie McKinnell
Marcie McKinnell

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Hometown: Overland Park, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Retired Middle School Science Teacher

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? Laurie Givan (Education Coordinator) & Brad Nuest (Space Science Educator)

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Meeting the kids & working with my co- director & counselors!

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? Campers go home with this experience in their top 10!

Courtney Klassen
Courtney Klassen

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Hometown: Hillsboro, Kansas

Are you currently in school? No, Graduated from Emporia State University in May 2016

If yes, what is your area of study: Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education with Endorsement in MS Mathematics

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I student taught for an entire year last year in three different grade levels (1st, 5th, and 7th grade). I ended up accepting a position teaching math in Buhler teaching middle school mathematics. I absolutely love my job, but do miss teaching science and elementary school kids. I thought this job would be the perfect “fit”. Now, I have the best of both worlds! 

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I am looking forward to forming a connection with many different campers and staff throughout the summer and seeing the excitement of the kids at graduation when they get to show off everything they have done throughout the week to their parents. 

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to let every child know that they are important, their ideas matter, and they can help contribute to make this world a better place through their love of science of learning! 

Kim Herron
Kim Herron

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Hometown:  Inman, Kansas

Are you currently in school? I teach 6th grade Science, Social Studies, and Math at Inman Elementary School in Inman, Kansas. 

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp?  Interaction and collaboration of space, our world, and learning with kids and adults sharing experiences in a positive environment. 

What do you most look forward to this camp season?  Inspiring kids to dream bigger and persevere through to reach their dreams while learning.

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp?  Continue to meet new people and make connections expanding Cosmosphere relations in and beyond Kansas.

Rebecca Winder
Rebecca Winder

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Hometown: Hutchinson, Kansas

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? Sounded fun! Needed something to do with my summer

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Learning and fun

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? Helping the kids have a great camp experience

Adrienne Deal
Adrienne Deal

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Previous Cosmo Camp Titles: Asst manager front desk, run Dr. Goddard and Planetarium live shows

Hometown: Wichita, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Wichita State University, Student Teaching Hadley Middle School

If yes, what is your area of study: Secondary Education, Earth and Space Science

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, when and which camps? 1994 camp 1 and 1995 camp 2

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere Camps? My 6th grade teacher, Mr. Lester

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I look forward to the chance to experience camp through a different perspective, as well as the opportunity to connect with the campers through a shared experience.

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere Camps? I have been involved with the Cosmosphere on and off for over 22 years and I can truly say that it is one of the best places on Earth. The Cosmosphere is always growing and evolving to better suit the needs of the campers. I love getting to be a part of that change. 

Jordan Appel-Benton
Jordan Appel-Benton

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Hometown: Hutchinson, Kansas 

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study: Astronomy/Chemistry 

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I have a passion for astronomy, the Cosmosphere, and passing the torch of knowledge. 

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I most enjoy showing the young people that they can become pilots, astronomers, or even an astronaut. We get to have lots of fun and prepare campers for a bright future in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathmatics). 

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to inspire campers to go into the STEAM field and to encourage them that they are capable of reaching such great heights.  

Alexis Veliz
Alexis Veliz

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Dardanelle, Arkansas

Are you Currently in school? Yes 

If yes, what is your area of study: I'm a sophomore in College and I'm doing my basics.

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I was invited to apply.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I hope to gain experience and meet new people. I'm glad I have been given this opportunity. I want to help out as much as I can.

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to try my best and hopefully get invited to help out again. So far it has been a great experience and the job has really challenged me and my abilities. I've learned so many new things.

Tyler Stone
Tyler Stone

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Council Grove, Kansas

Are you currently in school? No

If yes, what is your area of study: Graduated from the Fire Science Program at HCC

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I have very much enjoyed working at the Cosmosphere over the last two years, so when the opportunity presented itself to be a counselor, I eagerly accepted. 

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I wanted to work with the camps to see how they all ran together this summer.  I knew they did lots of cool and exciting stuff upstairs and I was ready to begin learning along side our campers.

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? Learn and work as much as I can and ensure that everyone has a great summer!

Rory Pfister
Rory Pfister

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Hutchinson, Kansas

Are you currently in school? If yes, what is your area of study: I attend Buhler High School, and will graduate in 2018. I plan on going to Kansas State and studying Engineering.

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? If yes, when and which camps? I attended many camps including Solar System, Lunar Base, Starship Earth, and the Boy Scout Merits of Space camp. I also earned many merit badges through the Cosmosphere. (2007-2011, 2015)

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I wanted to create the same positive learning atmosphere that encouraged my love for science. Being involved with camps was not only a way to keep me busy, but also serves as a meaningful use of my time.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Working with and building relationships with my fellow counselors. One of my favorite parts of the camps is the rocket launch.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? Since it is my first year helping with Cosmosphere camps, I hope to learn more about all of the camps and how I might expand my role in future years.

Mary Charlotte Meredith
Mary Charlotte Meredith

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Hutchinson, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study? Communication Sciences and Disorders (Pre- Speech Pathology)

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? Being a Hutchinson native, I have always enjoyed visiting the Cosmosphere with friends and family. Becoming a counselor and getting involved in camps comes from that love of time spent in such an amazing place, while also sharing that interest and a drive for learning with the students that come to the camps.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I’m most excited to be learning alongside the kids during the camps. My knowledge of space and space exploration may be limited, but learning with the kids will be a great chance to show them the joy of learning new things never stops. Most importantly, I look forward to getting the kids excited for the adventures, and hopefully, encouraging them to keep coming back to camps.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? Learning something new every day, and getting the kids excited to do the same!

Ashley Mefford
Ashley Mefford

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Hutchinson, KS

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study? Chemistry

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? My passion for science and my love for working with children.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Meeting new people, and watching kids learn and explore their passion.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? To further my knowledge while helping others further theirs as well.

Gabriel Loaeza
Gabriel Loaeza

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study: Student at U OF A Fayetteville AR, major - Architecture. Two associates degree.

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I was contacted Lynn Wheeler who is a migrant helper to minority's and knows my story so I could relatable to students.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I have only attended two weeks of counseling for migrant students, and enjoyed it, but I'm just looking forward to inspiring kids in whatever passion they desire.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to learn more, improve communication skills and other lacked skills. Simply help as many students I can and inform them of the help that is out there. If next year you guys have more migrant camps I wouldn't mind coming back to work those at all!!! 

Jaron Caffrey
Jaron Caffrey

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Mount Hope, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study: I'm still in High School

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? The opportunity to have an impact on kids' futures.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Learning about space and the history involving the US space program. 

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? Learn many new things and make connections. 

Maggie Brown
Maggie Brown

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Hutchinson, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study: Aerospace Engineering

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, which camps? Lunar Base, Solar System, Take Off, and Mars Academy

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? As a camper, the camps helped me discover the career path I am hoping to follow and I saw being a counselor as a chance to, hopefully, do the same for another camper.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I look forward to spending my summer around people who are just as passionate about space and space exploration as I am.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to inspire campers to continue exploring our universe, just as my counselors did when I was a camper.

Brady Bird
Brady Bird

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Kansas City, Missouri

Are you currently in school? Yes sophomore – Purdue University

If yes, what is your area of study? Aerospace Engineering

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes 

If yes, when and which camps? Space 101, Summer 2009; Space 201, Summer 2010; Space 201, Summer 2011; Space 401, Summer 2012; Space 501, Summer 2013

What drew you to becoming involved in the Cosmosphere Camp? I enjoyed my experience as a camper and enjoy the Cosmosphere environment. As a camper I considered becoming a counselor in the future, and am taking advantage of that opportunity now.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Coming back to the Cosmosphere and sharing the experiences I had when I was younger with the campers. I look forward to seeing the campers learn and watching them grow.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to help provide campers with a valuable experience. In recalling my camp experience, I remember the impact which the counselors had on my development, and I hope to make a similar impact on the lives of campers this summer. 

Sam Wilson
Sam Wilson

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: El Dorado, KS

Are you currently in school? Yes, at Hutchinson Community College

If yes, what is your area of study? History and Archaeology

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, when and which camps? Mars, 101, 201

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? The Cosmosphere is what inspired me as  child to pursue a higher education in history. Through the camps, I have learned so much and been given so many opportunities that it only makes sense to give back.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Working with all the counselors to provide an inspiring experience for our campers.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? To help as many children as I can.

Scott Hawklyn
Scott Hawklyn

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Santa Cruz, California

Are you currently in school? Graduated

If yes, what is your area of study: Honor BS in Biomedical Science

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, when and which camps? 6-10 years ago Space 101-401

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? Time as a camper made me come to love the Cosmosphere and thus I wanted to come back

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Having fun with the kids and making sure they learn something along the way

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? I want to make sure all my kids are happy and enjoying themselves as I help with the camps any way I can and to do well enough that all of you would love to have me back next year.

Hannah Farney
Hannah Farney

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Andover, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study? Criminology and Psychology

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, when and which camps? I attended camps 101, 201, 301, and 501 in the summers of 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014.

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? Going to a camp as a kid really sparked my interest in space exploration. Upon entering college, I realized that engineering wasn’t my path, but I still wanted to be participating and involving in discussing and working with the subject that involves space exploration. I as well have a passion for kids and working with the youth, so being a counselor is kind of like a dream job that combines my two passions.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? With a lot of new staff this year I am excited to be able to bond and get a lot of new talents to work with the kids. Having new perspectives of what works with both disciplining and engaging the kids with different mindsets can help me grow as a counselor and an individual as well help the camps grow in both attendance and character.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? Being involved with camps this year I hope to be able to grow skills such as public speaking and interactions. Being able to work with others in a team setting to grow my techniques and job experience. Continuing to expand my teaching abilities and learning new techniques in how to deal with adolescents that can help me outside of the Cosmosphere workplace. Allowing myself to work with my passions and gain experience while engaging in fun with my peers and the camps. 

Jackie Rech
Jackie Rech

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Wichita, Kansas

Are you currently in school? yes

If yes, what is your area of study? Aerospace Engineering

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, when and which camps? Space 101, Summer 2010; Space 201, Summer 2011

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I love that I get the opportunity to help the kids have the same experiences I had when coming to camp.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I look forward to watching the campers grow as they challenge themselves to complete their missions and learn more about space exploration.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to gain more work experience that is involved with my field of study.

Allison Sutherland
Allison Sutherland

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Wichita, KS

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study? Going into pre-med

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I have visited the Cosmosphere ever since I was a child. I love learning as much as I can about the cosmos and space travel, and the Cosmosphere was and is still a very big part in my life.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I adore working with kids, so teaching them something that I am passionate about makes me even more excited.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to gain confidence through public speaking skills, and I also hope to learn as much as I can over the next summer. 

Savannah Kipfer
Savannah Kipfer

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Clay Center, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Yes (KU)

If yes, what is your area of study: Aerospace Engineering

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I love space and wanted to be a part of inspiring kids. The Cosmosphere is what inspired me to go into the field that I did.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I look forward to working with a bunch of people that have the same interests as me.

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to build relationships with my coworkers and help kids have fun doing something the love.

Seth Zastrow
Seth Zastrow

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown:  Newton, KS

Are you currently in school?  Yes

If yes, what is your area of study:  Aerospace Engineering at Wichita State University

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, when and which camps? Space 101-501 and Xtreme

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I love space and want to be an Astronaut

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Teaching Kids

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? Teaching Kids

Spencer Steinert
Spencer Steinert

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: McPherson, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study? Master’s of Innovation Design

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I was looking for something to do over the summer and I have always loved the Cosmosphere and space as well as kids so I figured, what better opportunity than to be a counselor at the Cosmosphere!

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Since I’ve never been I don’t really know what to expect. If I had to pick though I’m really looking forward to working with kids and helping them understand and explore the wonderful Cosmos we live in.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to be able to inspire children and foster their creativity, innovation, and imagination for space and everything they want to do with it.

Jared Goering
Jared Goering

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: McPherson, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study? Master’s of Innovation

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, when and which camps? Cosmosphere Camps, Years 1-5

What few you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I had a lot of fun there as a child and I hope to help other kids have that level of fun.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Associating and helping the kids.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to learn more about leading kids. 

Molly Bovos
Molly Bovos

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Hometown:  Roeland Park, KS

Are you currently in school?  No, I teach

If yes, what is your area of study?  I teach Physics, Astronomy, and Engineering

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper?  Yes

If yes, when and which camps? Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I have always wanted to be an astronaut (I still do!) because it is the ultimate in exploration and discovery! Coming back as a counselor and director has been important to me because I love inspiring students and showing them how wonderful the Cosmosphere is!

What do you most look forward to this camp season? The camp season is underway for me, and my favorite thing is how excited the students get when we tour the museum. I am so proud to be a part of this program.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to inspire kids to continue learning about space, come back as counselors, study STEM in college, and achieve their dreams. The Cosmosphere is where dreams begin to breathe. 

Henry Miller
Henry Miller

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Wichita, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Yes, at the University of Kansas

If yes, what is your area of study? Aerospace Engineering

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, when and which camps? I don’t remember but I know I started in Mars Academy and did everything up until Space 501; and I also did one of the boy scout camps.

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I like aerospace and the Cosmosphere and the camps looked fun online.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? To perform the tasks I am given to the best of my ability as well as to hopefully make friends and enjoy my job.

Mariana Calvo
Mariana Calvo

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: El Paso, TX

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study? Aerospace Engineering

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, when and which camps? I attended camps 101 and 201 with the Wiggs Middle School groups from El Paso, TX the summers of 2011 and 2012. I attended 301 summer of 2013, 401 in 2014, and 501 in 2015.

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I really had an amazing experience being a camper. Going to the Cosmosphere lead me to become interested in my field of study. I never realized that working in aeronautics could actually be a tangible goal until the camp. In high school, I babysat a lot and realized I also have a passion for teaching and the development of children. The Cosmosphere is one of the only places that does both these things so well and I was drawn to this idea.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I am extremely excited about the opportunity to see how all the behind the scenes preparation for the camps. I can’t wait to see how much work goes into getting everything ready for all the kids and seeing the final product. I remember how excited I was to be in the Falcon simulator, and to get to be in Mission Control. I am looking forward to seeing this emotion in the kids. I hope to give them the same amazing experience that I had.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to learn more about working with people who share the same interests that I do. Many of the other counselors seem to be passionate about kids, and that is exciting for me. I hope to meet people that I will get to stay in contact with, and maybe one day work with on outside jobs. I also hope to have the opportunity to develop my organizational skills and to better my understanding of the high-intensity days of a regular job. 

Brett Arndt
Brett Arndt

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Hometown: Colwich, Kansas

Are you currently in school? University of Northern Colorado

If yes, what is your area of study: Master of Arts in Behavior Intervention

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I have taught at a STEM school for the past 2 years and love science and the design process. As a kid, my family would visit the Cosmosphere and watch the movies and documentaries. It was always very exciting to see the new artifacts and exhibit with every visit.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I look forward to working with the campers and being with students who have a passion to further there knowledge of space!

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp?  I hope to see the “insider” view of the Cosmosphere and learning new information that I can take back to my students during the school year! I love learning the newest information about space and space travel, and I look forward to seeing what ideas the campers bring to the camps! 

Seth Peery
Seth Peery

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Goddard, Kansas

Are you currently in school? Yes, Kansas State University

If yes, what is your area of study? Medical Biochemistry

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, when and which camps? I attended many of the short day camps before middle school, such as Solar System. I attended Mars, Space 101, Space 201, Space 301, and Space 501.

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I loved and still love the atmosphere of learning and the chance to learn valuable communication skills.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I am looking forward to the opportunity to pass on the love for space history and the excitement of the endless possibility of the future.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope that I can help foster a culture where all campers feel that they have a safe, comfortable, and fun learning environment.

Megan Linke
Megan Linke

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Hometown: Hutchinson, Kansas

Are you currently in school? No have a bachelor's of education

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes

If yes, when and which camps? Early 2000s, based on the activities we did something similar to Lunar Base, one I can't remember, and Space 101-401

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I went here as a camper and always wanted to be the one to help kids have the same experience I had.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Working with Mars academy

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? Personally to increase my organizational skills. In terms of camps to make the camp experience enjoyable for every camper I come in contact with.

Madelyn Page
Madelyn Page

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown:  Hutchinson, KS

Are you currently in school?  Yes - The University of Kansas

If yes, what is your area of study?  Elementary Education

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere Camps? I have always been interested in space and I love working with kids. I visited the Cosmosphere as an elementary student but hadn’t been back in years until my brother took some pictures there in connection with his aerospace engineering degree. Returning to the Cosmosphere, made me realize just how much fascination I have with space and the ideal learning environment the Cosmosphere provides. I decided to look into employment and was elated to discover that I could work at the Cosmosphere in an atmosphere focused on young campers.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Because I have never attended the camps at the Cosmosphere, I have no single activity or experience that I look forward to doing again or learning more about. However, I am looking forward to the variety of activities that will be able to help students learn. I am eager to better understand the activities at camps and learn more about space in general.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere Camps? I hope that through being involved with Cosmosphere camps I can come to understand how the Cosmosphere can be used as an educational tool for my future students. I also hope that I can establish relationships and connections which can be used later on to benefit my future classroom. I also hope that I can become better acquainted with the Cosmosphere and all it has to offer so that I can better appreciate the amenities and experiences. 

Blake Lee
Blake Lee

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Pratt, Kansas                                                                                                       

Are you currently in school?  Yes, Newman University                                                         

If yes, what is your area of study?  Biology                                                                         

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes                                                           

If yes, when and which camps? Investigate Space, Takeoff, Mars Academy, Space 101 and Space 201; Back around 2005- 2009                                                                              

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? I remember coming to the camps when I was a kid, and I also remember the impact some of the counselors had on me. I was drawn back to the Cosmosphere hoping that I could have that same impact on some kid in my time at the Cosmosphere.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? I look forward to the chance of getting to share my knowledge and my love of all things space with the kids attending the camps.

What do you hope to accomplish this year being involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope to better my people skills, working with both follow counselors and the kids that attend. I also hope to make the camps enjoyable for the campers that are attending.

Ben Bogner
Ben Bogner

Cosmosphere Camp Counselor

Hometown: Wichita, KS

Are you currently in school? Yes

If yes, what is your area of study: Physics and Astronomy

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? Wanting to educate and inspire young people in the realm of the sciences.

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Getting to help groups of kids work together to achieve a common goal in a scientific manner.

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? I hope that one of the kids coming through the camp program becomes inspired, through an interaction with any one of the counselors, to become a great scientist.

Bret Kirkland
Bret Kirkland

Cosmosphere Camp Director

Previous Cosmo Camp Titles: Counselor from 2004-2008

Hometown: Andover, Kansas

Did you attend Cosmosphere Camp as a camper? Yes - two summers

If yes, when and which camps? Space 101 and Space 301

What drew you to becoming involved in Cosmosphere camp? A love of science and teaching

What do you most look forward to this camp season? Helping kids grow in their critical thinking and group skills.

What do you hope to accomplish this year begin involved with Cosmosphere camp? Inspiring kids to follow their interests.

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