Four Ways Camp Helps Your Teen Grow

4 ways camp helps grow

Gone are the days when your student needed a babysitter over the summer. Nowadays, you can head out to work in the morning and not worry about your teenager being home alone. So why would you invest all of that money in a summer program? What can your student get from a summer at NTSA that he couldn’t get through his regular high school extracurriculars?

1. Increased Independence and Resiliency
If your student has never been away from home for a prolonged period of time before, you definitely want to make sure that she has that opportunity before she goes away to college. Sure, you wouldn’t think homesickness could strike a college freshman — but you’d be amazed how much students can struggle during those first few months. According to a survey from the UCLA Higher Education Institute, 69% of first-year college students experience homesickness. Just like we prepare our students for academic success, we should also prepare them for social and emotional success. Residential summer programs can do that by increasing your student’s independence and resiliency. While we know it can be tough to let them go, trust us that giving your student a sneak peek at college life will help make the transition easier. (Besides, we promise that your student will come home knowing how to do their own laundry like a pro!)

2. The Ability to Form New (and Unexpected) Friendships
Oftentimes, we grow up in communities where everyone around us looks just like we do. They’re from the same socioeconomic class, have the same political and religious beliefs, and share the same cultural touchstones. But college can be an entirely different ball-game. In college, you’re going to meet other students from all across the United States (not to mention abroad!). Having lectures with students who may appear to have nothing in common with you can be a bit of a shock — but that’s why NTSA’s here. In our program, all of our students are brought together by their dedication to theatre. This can help your student build new (and unexpected) friendships with peers from completely different walks of life. Not only will this help your student improve his social skills, it will also give him a brand-new perspective on the world around him.

3. A Major Confidence Boost and Stronger Sense of Self
Any experienced thespian can tell you that performing onstage can give you a major boost of confidence. Imagine how much that boost is magnified when you’re performing in the Theatre Capital of America! Students who go through NTSA’s programs typically leave feeling much more self-assured than when they enter. In fact, many of them have gone on to start their own theatre companies or take on other leadership roles (in their high schools and colleges, as well as in the professional theatre industry) in the years immediately after their NTSA experience.

4. A Tribe of Their Own
Many of us felt isolated back in high school because our drama departments just weren’t big enough. We were one of a few students interested in theatre — and probably the only one who actually intended to make a career out of it. But here at NTSA, your student will be able to find her tribe: a group of students who are just as dedicated to making extraordinary theatre as she is. NTSA may be the first time that your student discovers other people who know all of the lyrics to Be More Chill, who have a favorite Broadway designer (like Donyale Werle or David Korins!), and can commiserate on their favorite style of LaDuca character shoes. There’s a reason why so many of our alumni go on to collaborate after their NTSA programs end! If your student feels a little bit out-of-the-loop in her high school, we highly encourage her to think about applying to NTSA.

5. A Vacation Just for You
Don’t underestimate the benefits that summer camp can have for parents! Enrolling your student in a summer program provides you with the gift of time over the summer — to work longer hours on an exciting new project; to focus on strengthening relationships with your partner and friends; or to have your own vacation (or stay-cation!). And oftentimes, enrolling your student in a summer program can actually improve your relationship with her. She’ll be so excited to tell you everything that’s been happening in rehearsal on the phone each night that you may find your conversations are better than ever before!

Posted on Oct 05, 2017 in About NTSA  

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