Computer Science Summer Camps

At Western, students crave adventure both in and out of the classroom. Summer camps are no different. In both our Day Camp and Overnight Camp, Computer Science campers spend parts of each day learning about computer programming, software and technology. The other half of the day is spent enjoying the great outdoors in the gorgeous Gunnison Valley.

The best of both worlds. What’s more? Super affordable.

Sample Course: Game Programming for Beginners

An introduction to arcade-style game programming using real code in the Python language, taught by Western Professor of Computer Science Dan Schuster. For questions about the programming component, contact Professor Schuster at dschuster@western.edu.

  • Learn real programming, not a drag-and-drop interface.
  • Learn a real language—Python, possibly the most popular programming language in the world.
  • Utilize a custom library of graphics objects and capabilities.
  • Learn to:
    • create simple graphic objects like circles and complex graphic objects like tanks, humanoids, etc.;
    • program movement of the objects, detect collisions, react to mouse clicks and movement and keypress actions, keep game score;
    • tell animated stories and write simple, complete games.
  • Participate in activities:
    • create an animated story of alien abduction by a UFO;
    • create a scroller game like Helicopter in a Cave, flying a helicopter through a cave under key control;
    • create a Dodge Ball game, using a mouse-controlled player to dodge balls and collect points;
    • design and create your own arcade game.

 

Western’s Computer Science Day Camp: July 8-12

Each day on Western’s campus from Monday, July 8 to Friday, July 12, campers will spend the morning and afternoon learning the basics of arcade-style game programming in the beginner-friendly language Python from Western faculty and students. In between, the campers are treated to lunch as well as a taste of outdoor adventure among the abundant peaks, rivers and trails that surround Western’s walkable, tree-lined campus. That's right: Nearly each day, Western's own Wilderness Pursuits office will guide the campers on an outdoor-recreation adventure in Gunnison's rarefied air. The camp wraps up with an optional BBQ dinner on Thursday and student presentations Friday.

Register Now

  • For whom: Any student entering seventh grade or above is welcome.
  • Dates and times: July 8-11, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and July 12, 8 a.m.-noon
  • Cost: $50 (for the entire week!)
  • Meals included: Five breakfasts, four lunches and one humdinger of a BBQ dinner

Day Camp Schedule

Monday, July 8 

7:00 - 8:00 a.m.

Drop off/Breakfast in Welcome Center

8:00 - 10:00 a.m.

CS Lab Session

10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

WP Experience & Lunch

2:00 - 5:00 p.m.

CS Lab Session

5:00 -->

Head Home

Tuesday, July 9 

7:00 - 8:00 a.m.

Drop off/Breakfast in RAC

8:00 - 10:00 a.m.

CS Lab Session

10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

WP Experience & Lunch

2:00 - 5:00 p.m.

CS Lab Session

5:00 -->

Head Home

Wednesday, July 10 

7:00 - 8:00 a.m.

Drop off/Breakfast in RAC

8:00 - 10:00 a.m.

CS Lab Session

10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Campus Tour & Lunch with Ambassadors

2:00 - 5:00 p.m.

CS Lab Session

5:00 -->

Head Home

Thursday, July 11 

7:00 - 8:00 a.m.

Drop off/Breakfast in RAC

8:00 - 10:00 a.m.

CS Lab Session

10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

WP Experience & Lunch

2:00 - 5:00 p.m.

CS Lab Session

5:00 -->

LAST DAY BBQ - Intramurals Field (Optional)

Friday, July 12

 

7:00 - 8:00 a.m.

Drop off/Breakfast

8:00 - 12:00 p.m.

CS Lab Session/Project Presentations & Lunch

12:00 - 12:30 p.m.

Pick up/No Lunch

Sold Out (Waitlist Available) | Western’s Computer Science Overnight Camp: July 14-19

Starting Sunday evening, July 14, overnight campers get the full Western experience, including life in Ute Hall. Of course, there will be Computer Science classes and lab sessions in the morning and afternoon. Between those, campers are treated to lunch as well as a taste of outdoor adventure among the abundant peaks, rivers and trails that surround Western’s walkable, tree-lined campus. That's right: Nearly each day, Western's own Wilderness Pursuits office will guide the campers on an outdoor-recreation adventure in Gunnison's rarefiled air. 

After dinner, campers will enjoy the Gunnison “nightlife”—pizza night, movie night, frozen yogurt at Jermaine’s and much, much more. Then it’s lights out in the campus dorms. The camp culminates with a BBQ dinner with yard games and student presentations at the end of the week.

SOLD OUT: To be added to the waitlist, contact the Admissions Office at admissions@western.edu

  • For whom: Any student entering eighth grade or above is welcome.
  • Dates and times: Dropoff is Sunday, July 14 at 5 p.m.; pickup is Friday, July 19 at 1 p.m.
  • Cost: $125 (for the entire week!)
  • Meals included: Five breakfasts, four lunches and five dinners, including one humdinger of a BBQ

Overnight Camp Schedule

Sunday, July 14 

4:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Drop off/Check In

5:00 - 6:00 p.m.

Dinner (Sodexo)

6:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Icebreaker, Camp Info & Settle Into Dorms

Monday, July 15 

7:00 - 8:00 a.m.

Breakfast in RAC

8:00 - 10:00 a.m.

CS Lab Session

10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

WP Experience & Lunch (Sodexo box lunch)

2:00 - 5:00 p.m.

CS Lab Session

5:00 - 6:00 p.m.

Dinner (Sodexo)

6:00 - 7:00 p.m.

Free Time

7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Projector & Screen for Movie on Taylor Lawn

Tuesday, July 16 

7:00 - 8:00 a.m.

Breakfast n RAC

8:00 - 10:00 a.m.

CS Lab Session

10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

WP Experience & Lunch (Sodexo box lunch)

2:00 - 5:00 p.m.

CS Lab Session

6:00 - 7:15 p.m.

Dinner at Mario's in Gunnison

7:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Bingo for Western Swag (dorm lounge)

8:30 - 9:00 p.m.

Head Back to Dorms - Free Time

Wednesday, July 17 

7:00 - 8:00 a.m.

Breakfast in RAC

8:00 - 10:00 a.m.

CS Lab Session

10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Campus Tour & Lunch with Ambassadors

2:00 - 5:00 p.m.

CS Lab Session

5:00 - 6:00 p.m.

Dinner (Sodexo)

6:00 - 7:00 p.m.

Free Time

7:00 - 8:30 p.m.

Jermaine's & Esports Collab - Games & Froyo

Thursday, July 18 

7:00 - 8:00 a.m.

Breakfast in RAC

8:00 - 10:00 a.m.

CS Lab Session

10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

WP Experience & Lunch (Sodexo box lunch)

2:00 - 5:00 p.m.

CS Lab Session

5:00 - 7:30 p.m.

LAST DAY BBQ - Intramurals Field

7:30 - 9:00 p.m.

Free Time

Friday, July 19 

7:00 - 8:00 a.m.

Breakfast in RAC

8:00 - 11:30 a.m.

CS Lab Session/Project Presentations

11:30 - 1:00 p.m.

Project Presentation & Lunch

1:00 - 2:00 p.m.

Pack Up Dorms & Any Last Requests/Info from CJ

Questions?

Feel free to contact the Welcome Center at visit@western.edu or 970.943.7083.

Daniel Schuster Headshot

Professor of Computer Science, Mathematics

Education
B.A., University of Colorado Boulder, Philosophy, 1978
B.S., Eastern Washington University, Mathematics and Computer Science, 1983
M.S., Mathematics, Eastern Washington University, 1987
Ph.D., Mathematics Education, University of Texas at Austin, 1996
Phone
970.943.2999
Email
dschuster@western.edu
Office Location
Hurst Hall 214
LinkedIn
https://www.linkedin.com/in/daniel-schuster-76a41523/

Biography

How did you discover Western?

I rode a motorcycle through Gunnison in 1980 and loved the place. I always wanted to come back. I applied for a professor's job in 1988 and the rest is history.

What are some of the highlights of your career?

I was pleased to radically upgrade the curriculum in some of the lower level Computer Science courses. I've enjoyed creating new courses such as Computer Science 250 Web Development 1 and Computer Science 120 Professional Computer Literacy, which is the single most successful Computer Science class Western’s has ever had, measured by number of students.

I wrote the first successful proposal for a Computer Science major in 2001 and helped John Peterson do the rewrite in 2014. In the summer of 2018, I worked with our new faculty to create the radically improved, more comprehensive Computer Science majors that are in place now.

For the last few years I’ve been directing students in the development of a Python game programming library, based on Pygame but much easier to use. It’s been used successfully in high schools and in our own class, and it’s about ready for general public release.

What most excites you about your field?

There’s simply no end to the innovation. As a teacher, that always gives me something new and challenging to learn and then to teach. That’s a wonderful experience.

What is your favorite thing about the Gunnison Valley?

Two things—the environment and the people.

The environment is simply unparalleled for the things I like to do. I’m a motorcyclist and there are literally thousands of miles of trails and jeep road in the county that I’ve been able to explore on my dirt bikes. Some of the best curvy paved roads in the country are here and I get to ride them on my BMW.

The people of Gunnison are like so many others in the American West—live and let live. That very much matches my own philosophy. Gunnison is a place where people want to live. That’s a great thing.