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Grandchildren's University

UW-Whitewater Grandchildren's University

We are working on seeing if this event can be offered Summer 2021.  Due to the pandemic we are looking at our options and will post once we have a solid plan.  Check back soon for MORE details!

Have fun learning together this summer at UW-Whitewater's Grandchildren's University event.  Children and grandparents will go to college together, sharing educational experiences and campus fun.

Learn together - play together - grow together!

  • Share a suite in our air-conditioned Starin Hall.
  • Learn through hands-on activities and earn a "degree" in your major.
  • Enjoy an evening full of bowling, swimming and board games.
  • Meet other grandparents and their grandchildren

  This camp is available to grandchildren ages 7-14 in 2021.

Limited to the first 120 registrants.

Date: Friday, June 25 - Saturday, June 26, 2021


Register Online Closed

Online registration is available for groups of two-four people.  Please call 262-472-3165 if you would like to register a group of 5 or more. 

Registrations accepted online until noon on 6/21/21. We do NOT accept walk up registrations.

Art: Cast Heirloom Badge 


Want to design and fabricate your own pewter object? You will be guided in ways to discover your potential to communicate through metal. Grandparents and grandchildren will work collaboratively to use traditional and contemporary techniques to make molds for casting pewter objects. The objects could be used as a talisman, heirloom, jewelry, or something original!

Capacity: 12
Ages Recommended: Ages 10-14
Physical Activity Level: Low

Notes of Interest:  For safety in the studio, campers should plan to wear closed toed shoes, long pants, and natural fiber clothing as well as glasses if you wear contact lenses.  Please also bring any and all objects that you would like to incorporate in your heirloom jewelry project (jewelry, shells, buttons, etc.) or that will inspire your creation.
Instructor: Dr. Teresa Faris directs UW-Whitewater’s Metals program and is co-author of the Women of Metal Exhibition and Oral History Project. She has received a number of awards including a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts 2008. She exhibits extensively in Europe and the US. Recent work, publications and exhibition are listed on her website at

Art, Science, and Nature!


You will spend time experimenting with different types of paint and how they react with common chemicals like rubbing alcohol, baby oil, shaving cream and glue. Then we will take our experiments and turn them into works of art! You will be using themes in nature for our paintings as well as items from outside such as rocks, and sticks. The grandchild and grandparent will work together to create their own handmade papers to weave with and to paint on. You will also learn a folding technique called “Iris folding” where some of the unique papers can be integrated into a design. Finally, you will do a collaborative painting on canvas where you will be instructed how to paint a summer landscape. At the end, the two canvases can be connected and displayed together as one unified, intergenerational piece of art!! No previous art experience is needed! You will be guided you through each project!

Capacity: 12
Ages Recommended: Ages 10-14
Physical Activity Level: Low

Notes of Interest:  For safety in the studio, campers should plan to wear closed toed shoes, long pants, and natural fiber clothing as well as glasses if you wear contact lenses. 
Instructor: Kristen Monday

Astronomy: Exploring the Milky Way Galaxy


Description: Learn about all the things to be found in our Milky Way Galaxy. You will start off with an orientation session where you learn about what galaxies are, how big they are, and some of the things that can be found in our own Milky Way Galaxy. This will be followed by a walk through a campus-wide scale model of the Milky Way Galaxy where you will have to seek out new discoveries. You will learn how astronomers use different wavelengths of light to find things in space, and be introduced to several NASA sponsored Citizen Science projects where you can discover new planets, black holes, and stars that move through space at super-high speeds. At the end of the class, you will get to show off your favorite discoveries. There will also be an evening telescope viewing session, weather-permitting. 

Capacity: 20 
Ages Recommended: Ages 8-14
Physical Activity Level: Moderate during walks around campus and to the Whitewater Observatory; low during indoor lab activities.

Instructor: Bob Benjamin is a professor in the Department of Physics at UW-Whitewater, where he teaches courses on physics and astronomy. He is an expert on the structure of our own Milky Way Galaxy. Part of the data that students will be using during the class projects will be data that he has obtained in the last year using NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope. 

Biology: Mammal Skulls and Tracks 


Description: Do you know how to track a wolf? Can you tell what an animal eats by its teeth? Do you know why your pet dog listens to you while your cat ignores you? Well come and find the answers to these questions and more. We’ll study the shape of teeth in mammal skulls, find out about pack behavior and learn about animal tracks. We’ll also learn how to make plaster casts of animal track. There are many mammal skulls for you to examine. You’ll get to make a plaster casting of animals track such as a bear, wolf or cougar to take home.

Capacity: 20
Ages Recommended: 7-12
Physical Activity Level: Low

Notes of Interest:  We will be making a plaster casts of tracks. Please wear clothing that can get plaster on it.
Instructor: George Clokey

Genetics: Genetics Engineering in Tadpoles (How to make tadpoles make light like a firefly)


Have you ever watched fireflies make light at night? Scientists have figured that out and use that information to make mice, fish, plants, and even bacteria make light like a firefly. In this major, you and your grandparents will investigate how we can genetically engineer bacteria and frogs to make light and how a fertilized egg becomes a frog! We will design and carry out an experiment using our light producing tadpoles to help us answer some amazing scientific questions.

Capacity: 24
Ages Recommended: 7-14
Physical Activity Level: Low

Instructor: Kris Curran is a Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences where she teaches Introductory Biology, Cell Biology, and Developmental Biology. She conducts research in the development of circadian rhythm during early frog development.

Information Technology

Information Technology

Ever want to understand the parts of a personal computer and what makes them work? During this Major we will learn the basic function of each component and build a computer from scratch. We will then take our functioning machine and learn some basic computer skills related to the use of the internet, virus protection, application and performance management. In addition, we will discuss the core differences between laptop computers and your basic tower model.

Capacity: 20 
Ages Recommended: Ages 10-14
Physical Activity Level: Low

Notes of Interest:  Components used during this major will be provided in the class.
Instructor: Steve Liegle is an industry professional with over 25 years working in the information technology field.

Virtual Reality

Technology: Virtual Reality Creation and Collaboration

Ever wanted to design your own world? Work together to solve problems? Play games in a virtual space? In this major, grandparents and grandchildren will utilize virtual reality technologies to make 3D designs, visit far-off destinations in the world, and even solve virtual puzzles using good, old-fashioned teamwork. Prepare to do the impossible and create the unimaginable!

Capacity: 12
Ages Recommended: Ages 10-14
Physical Activity Level: Low

Notes of Interest: Those who get motion sickness easily or have had past issues using virtual reality may have difficulty attending this session.
Instructor: Jon Spike 

Resident Camper:  $215 per person

Participants will be staying in the air-conditioned Starin Hall suites. Maximum capacity of each suite is four.  Groups larger than four will be split into two or more suites as necessary. Groups of two may be housed with another registered group.  These suites provide four separate bedrooms, two bathrooms, a living space, and a kitchen with refrigerator, microwave, dishwasher and coffee maker. You must provide your own bedding, pillows, linen, shower and hand towels, utensils, cookware, and dinnerware. Basic toiletries, like soap, are not provided. The residence hall has a secured entrance and the campers are monitored by the residence hall directors, assistants, and by our own camp counseling staff. Resident campers will have three well-balanced meals each full day. Meals are included in the registration fee.

Commuter Camper:  $175 per person

Commuters are campers who elect not to stay overnight in the residence halls. Commuters do not eat breakfast on campus but will be provided with lunch and dinner. 

Fees Include

The resident camp fee covers lodging, meals, instruction, a camp t-shirt* and insurance. The commuter fee includes noon and evening meals, instruction, a camp t-shirt* and insurance.

*T-shirts are guaranteed if registered by 6/11/21.


All registrant accounts must be paid in full three weeks (21 days) prior to the start of the event.  Registrants with outstanding balances after payment is due in full are subject to being removed from the event roster without refund. Please contact Continuing Education Services at prior to this deadline if extenuating circumstances prevent you from completing a payment.

In the event of a cancellation, Continuing Education Services should be notified no later than 21 days before the start date of the event session in order to receive a refund, less the $100 non-refundable deposit. Cancellation requests received less than 21 days from the start of the event will receive a refund minus a 50% late cancellation fee of event cost. Cancellations due to medical reasons will receive a full refund, less the $100 non-refundable deposit, if the cancellation is requested and medical documentation is provided prior to the start of the event. Valid medical cancellations must include a signed letter from a licensed physician to qualify. NO REFUNDS will be given for withdrawal due to early departures, disciplinary reasons or no show after the event has started.

All cancellation requests must be submitted to; provide registrant's name, event title and medical documentation, if applicable. Refunds will be returned to name and address of payer.

We reserve the right to cancel any event due to low enrollment; in such a case, all fees paid will be refunded or the registrant can choose to apply fees to a different summer event.

Received an Award, Sponsorship or Discount?

For those participants who will be receiving a sponsorship to attend this event: Register and use the promo code your sponsor gave you. The sponsorship will be deducted from your invoice.  Any remaining balance remains the participant's responsibility. Any cancellations will result in the sponsorship funds being returned to the supporting organization.

Any qualifying discounts given by the event will not be applied after you have paid in full. Be sure to use the promo code at check out to receive your discount. You will be charged if you do not qualify for requested discount at the start of event.

A processing fee will be assessed if a refund is issued due to overpayment on your account.

Questions, received an award/scholarship without a promo code or want to use two promo codes? Please call Continuing Education Services at 262-472-3165 or email

Want to Sponsor a Registrant?

You can sponsor a registrant and cover all or partial fees. We have received requests in the past from schools, companies, organizations, friends and family members that would like to send their chosen registrant to a specific event. If you would like to sponsor a registrant, you can request a promo code that you may give to your chosen registrant. Click here for more details.

Confirmation Emails

Once you register a confirmation email will be sent to your email account. Contact if you do not receive this confirmation email. Historically email accounts used from and are blocked from receiving notifications from us or may end up in your spam folder. You are able to register using these accounts; however, you will not receive emails from us. Please make sure you have a working email address on file with us to be able to receive important announcements and updates about this event.

Info Packet

Pre camp information will be available on this website three weeks prior to the start of camp. Pre camp information includes medication requirements (complete only if taking meds at this event), parking details, check-in and out times with locations, confirmed daily schedule, mailing address for camper mail, what to bring and other important information you will need to know before attending camp. If any medical information changes, it is your responsibility to notify Continuing Education Services at

Info Packet Available 3 weeks prior to event

Risk Assessment Form

Please bring Risk Agreement Form that is needed for field trips off campus. This form is required by the Risk Management and Safety office. You can download the form here.

Check in and Orientation

Resident and commuter campers must check in at the location mentioned in the Info Packet. Please note that there are no structured activities during the check-in period, but residential staff will be in the residence hall to help campers get settled in their rooms and encourage campers to begin getting to know one another in an informal setting. Commuter campers can socialize at the dorms and go with the group to first session.

Arrival/Departure Outside the Event Scheduled Time

If your schedule results in you arriving after the designated check-in or before check-out time, please indicate in your registration the time you will arrive/depart in the “Special Need/Comments” field or email, if changes happened after you registered. On the day of arrival to campus, check the schedule in the Info Packet to see where the group will be at the time of your arrival. Please call the staff number listed in the Info Packet if you have any questions the day you arrive. If there are questions prior to camp, please contact

Frequently Asked Questions

We receive many questions from registrants and guardians.  Click here to review our frequently asked questions about summer camps.

Driving Directions

Directions to the campus can be found online by clicking here. A campus map can be found here. Campus building addresses can be found here.


Parking details will be available in the Info Packet.  Notice: All campus parking lots require a parking permit.  Failure to follow parking regulations will result in a fine.  More information is available on the Visitor Center website.

You may temporarily park in Lot 3 next to Starin Hall to unload your belongings.  We suggest that you check in to get your room key and parking pass before bringing your belonging in (less for you to handle while waiting in line).  There will be staff to help you unload your car.  Once unloaded, you will then need to move your car to Lot 7 and can unpack your belonging in your assigned room. Please make sure you move your car after it is unload to make room for campers arriving after you.

Terms & Conditions

By registering for an event, you agree to our Registration Terms and Conditions. UW-Whitewater will hold all registrants responsible for their conduct.  Serious misconduct or disruption will lead to immediate dismissal from event.  Registrants dismissed from the event will not receive a refund.  Please review the Terms and Conditions for more details.

Be aware that we recommend that all portable electronic devices be left at home, but ultimately it is your decision. We know that parents and children value the ability to be able to call each other at a moment's notice.  For that reason, we do not prohibit cell phones at camp, but ask that cell phone use does not interfere with the event and other participants.  Parents are responsible for setting clear guidelines for cell use with their child.  We will not be responsible for any lost or stolen items.

Typical Friday Schedule

8:30 - 9:30 a.m. Check In Starin Hall (including Commuters)
9:30 - 10:00 a.m. Welcome and Opening
10:15 a.m. - Noon Major Classes
12:15 - 1:15 p.m. Lunch
1:30 - 4:00 p.m. Major Classes
4:15 - 5:15 p.m. Campus Scavenger Hunt
5:30 - 6:30 p.m. Dinner
6:45 - 9:00 p.m. Optional Evening Activities - Open Swim, Bowling, Pool, Board Games, Video Games and Stargazing at the Observatory
9:00 p.m. Commuters Leave

*All times are subject to change, the info packet will have the accurate schedule

Typical Saturday Schedule

7:45 - 8:45 a.m. Breakfast
8:45 a.m. Commuters Arrive
9:00 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. Major Classes
12:15 - 1:15 p.m. Lunch
1:30 - 2:30 p.m. GCU Commencement
2:30 - 3:00 p.m. Check out of residence halls/ Commuters Leave

*All times are subject to change, the info packet will have the accurate schedule


Registrants are encouraged to have their own health insurance as accident insurance provided by the University is limited. Each registrant will be covered by a limited accident insurance policy. The insurance includes primary coverage up to $10,000. Insurance does not cover pre-existing injuries and is for accidents only. The cost of insurance is included in the registration fee.

Special Notice

The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater is committed to equal opportunity in its educational programs, activities and employment policies, for all persons, regardless of race, color, gender, creed, religion, age, ancestry, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, political affiliation, marital status, Vietnam-era veteran status, parental status and pregnancy.

If you have any disabling condition that requires special accommodations or attention, please advise us well in advance. We will make every effort to accommodate your special needs.

By registering for this event you understand that the University may take photographs and or videos of event participants and activities. You will be required to agree at the time of registration that the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater shall be the owner of and may use such photographs and or videos relating to the promotion of future events.  You will relinquish all rights that you may claim in relation to use of said photographs and/or videos.  Any media shared with the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater on social media or use of its hashtags grants the University use to media for any purpose.