Monica Figueroa

monica-figueroavacaState/Country: Iowa
Hometown: Storm Lake
High School: Storm Lake HS
College Plans: Buena Vista University
Major: Undeclared
Professional Plans: Undecided
Interests: Biking, Camping, Hiking, Movies, Photography, Running, Sports, Video

Press Release
CHARLESTON, WV – July 21, 2012 – Monica Figueroa Vaca of Storm Lake HS from Storm Lake , Iowa, represented Iowa as a delegate to the 2012 National Youth Science Camp® (NYSC). Figueroa Vaca joined 119 other top high school graduates representing the United States and eleven other countries at the prestigious four-week program, now in its 49th year. The NYSC, located in the beautiful and rustic setting of the Monongahela National Forest in West Virginia, integrates scientific programming with opportunities for delegates to explore music, art, and the outdoors.

Each year, scientists from various disciplines travel to the camp to present lectures and lead directed studies. This year’s lecture topics included: global warming, genomic medicine, radio astronomy, and energy sustainability. Throughout camp, Directed Studies provided extensive hands-on experiences in specific fields. Delegates had the opportunity to dissect a human hand, discuss bioethics, explore forensic science techniques, and search through the DNA sequence of a genetic disease.

In addition to learning about groundbreaking scientific research, delegates explored their natural surroundings through an extensive outdoor program consisting of hiking, caving, mountain biking, and rock climbing. The delegates chose from seminars ranging from Ultimate Frisbee and swing dancing to discussions of philosophy, travel, religion, and culture.

Figueroa Vaca said, “The lecture that’s had the biggest impact on me has been Allan Daly’s. HIs journey and the obstacles he faced in helping build a sustainable hospital for the people of the Solomon Islands is heroic and inspirational.”

Figueroa Vaca also included, “NYSC brings out the best from and to all of us 120 delegates. Exposing us to great learning opportunities through seminars, outdoor activities, people, and just experiencing each thing day by day while getting to know all the other delegates is truly a blessing that has change me for the best.”

The National Youth Science Camp is operated by the National Youth Science Foundation. For more information, please visit Click the photograph below to download a high resolution version suitable for publication.


Contact Information
Lynne D. Schwabe, Director of Development, (304) 997-4346

National Youth Science Foundation, Inc.
P.O. Box 3387
Charleston, WV 25333-3387

Proudly carrying her Iowa flag, Monica Figueroa represents her state during the Fourth of July flag ceremony.