By WRAL Tech Wire STEM News

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – Students can get “grossed out” this summer at free science camps.

The Minds On! Summer Science Program, developed in partnership with the Morehead Planetarium and Science Center in Chapel Hill, is being funded as part of Time Warner Cable’s Connect a Million Minds (CAMM) program, a five-year, $100 million philanthropic initiative to connect youth to ideas, people and opportunities that will inspire them to pursue education and careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

This is the second year Time Warner Cable has partnered with Morehead to present the summer science camp series.

“We are very excited to partner with the Morehead Planetarium and Science Center again this summer to bring this fun science program to so many kids across the Triangle,” said Christine Whitaker, area vice president of operations for Eastern North Carolina. “With Connect a Million Minds we are always looking for ways to expose students to math and science in unique and engaging ways, and we believe these camps definitely do just that.”

The Minds On! theme for 2012 is “The Ick Factor: The Gross Side of Science” and is built around biomedical topics.

Campers will participate in several activities including growing bacteria in petri dishes, discovering what germs look like under the microscope, building their own scabs, discovering how to identify a patient’s blood type and the composition of blood and the role it plays in our bodies.

The camps will be hosted by the Boys & Girls Clubs of Wake County and Durham Public Schools. Camps will be held at six different Wake County Boys & Girls Clubs, as well as at C.C. Spaulding Elementary, Bethesda Elementary, and Neal Middle School in Durham.

The camps – a combination of week-long and single-day camps – began this week and run through Aug. 10.