IDEAS Camp Overview

IDEAS logo

Est. 2019 at Queen's University

IDEAS (Innovation, Diversity, Exploration & Advancement in STEM) Camp is a 5 day camp concentrating on hands-on activities related to astronomy and physics! Meant for youths age 11-13 to explore the cosmos and carry out real science experiments with the close guidance of a diverse group of leading scientists in the field!

The IDEAS Camp program emphasizes community and values-based education. We aim to foster a love of the sciences, and encourage individual growth, while developing skills in leadership and team-based problem solving. 

Located in Kingston, Ontario, IDEAS Camp will take place at Queen's University - the home of Nobel Laureate Arthur B. McDonald. Training for our counselors is held at SNOLAB with the support of Science North - Sudbury Division. See below for pictures of our team during the training!

IDEAS Camp is supported primarily by the Queen's University Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy, the Arthur B. McDonald Canadian Astroparticle Physics Research Institute, and SNOLAB.

Program Details

IDEAS Camp is a 5 day camp that is meant to foster a love for science, leadership, and creativity in youths from ages 11-13 through hands-on activities. All activities are carefully crafted and led by a diverse group of leading scientists and role models.

Each day is split into three components:

  • Lab Experiments: Campers will perform a number of thrilling laboratory experiments, ranging from building a spectroscope to learning how to harness solar energy.
  • Workshops: A number of science and leadership groups will provide activities for our campers ranging from robotics to creative expression.
  • Design Project: Campers will put in group of 4, and will mentored by one our counselors to explore a topic of their interest across various physics disciplines throughout the week. Campers can specify their preference of topic during registration.

Camp Dates:

July 31st to August 4th 2023

Registration Details

Registration for IDEAS Camp 2023 is now closed! There is no registration fee, and lunch will be provided. As this is a day camp, there will be no other meals or accommodations provided. The camp is open to members of all backgrounds, nationalities, religions and genders. 

Deadline for applications was Thursday July 6, 2023 at midnight.




Q: What is the cost of the camp?

A: The camp is free for all participants! However, each parent will be issued an invoice of $100 per student. Parents will only be charged if their child does not attend the camp at all without sufficient cancellation notice. We will require one weeks notice before the start of camp if the child decides not to attend. Absences due to illness or other unforeseen circumstances during the camp will not incur a fee.

Q: How many students will be accepted?

A: We have a capacity of 16 students. This to ensure a small camper to counselor ratio to provide better and more consistent mentorship to each individual student.


Arrival and Departure

Q: When should I have my child(ren) at camp?

A: Please arrive at the camp between 8:30-8:45 am to sign in your child each day. Camp activities will start at 9 am.

Q: When should I pick up my child(ren)?

A: Camp activities will end at 4:30 pm. Parents will be allowed to pick up their child(ren) at that time.

Q: Can my child(ren) be picked up by a different person from the one who dropped them off?

A: Yes. Parents must provide a list of persons allowed to drop-off/pick-up their child(ren) during the camp. Valid government ID will be required at drop-off/pick-up.


Day at Camp

Q: What does a usual day look like at the camp?

A: Campers will participate in various laboratory experiments and workshops throughout the week. They will also work on a design project in groups mentored by one of our counselors. Please refer to Program Details above for more details.

Q: Will food be provided?

A: Yes, lunch and snacks will be provided. Parents must inform us of any dietary restrictions or allergies which we will adhere to.



Q: What is the camper to staff ratio?

A: There will be 1 counselor for every 4 campers.

Q: Who are the camp staff?

A: We are all graduate students in the Department of Physics, Engineering Physics, and Astronomy.


The IDEAS Camp team at SNOLAB (2023)

IDEAS Sudbury Training Group 2023 with logo


The original GIRLS Camp team at SNOLAB (2019)

IDEAS volunteers

Contact Information

For any questions regarding IDEAS Initiative, including those about programming and registration, please email us at:

IDEAS Executive Team: