Open to all 9-12th graders, U-M's Girls in Music & Technology summer camp goes virtual this August


U-M's Girls in Music and Technology

Summer camps, like the rest of society, were put in disarray due to the Covid crisis.

But some summer camps were able to recast their normal activities into virtual ones and stay open.

The University of Michigan's Girls in Music and Technology (GiMaT) runs August 17-28 is one of those camps, and because of its focus, GiMaT will likely be one of the more successful transitions to the virtual world. After all, who better to run a virtual tech and music camp than actual tech experts?

GiMaT is for students in grades 9-12, and the "camp is open to students of all gender identities, and is designed to encourage and support campers who wish to explore musical applications of technology."

U-M Faculty Director Dr. Zeynep Özcan, who makes brilliantly brainy electronic music, will guide students in understanding the musical applications if technology, with help from U-M School of Music, Theatre & Dance Department of Performing Arts Technology faculty. The program overview includes:

- Electronic Music Composition
- Historical Perspectives on Electronic Music and Female Electronic Music Pioneers
- Introduction to Music Production with Ableton Live
- Computer Programming for Music: Introduction to MAX MSP and Sound Synthesis
- Electronic Musical Instrument Design with Makey Makey
- Live Performance with Electronics and Live Coding
- Weekly Showcase of Student Works

No prior experience with music-making or computer programming is required, but there is a list of necessary tech needed for the camp:

Makey Makey Classic – $49 (required)
- Alesis Vmini 25-Key Portable Keyboard Controller (or equivalent)
- Audio-Technica M20X Headphone  (or equivalent)
- Personal computer (desktop or laptop)  Please contact if you need assistance with acquiring a computer for MPulse use. 
- Ableton Live (Short-term licenses available) (Free)
- Max (Short-term licenses available) (Free)
- VCV Rack – Virtual Eurorack DAW (free)
- Gibber – Live-coding Platform (free)

The tuition is $1,350 and the equipment plus software costs run around $175. But if that amount is more than you can afford, scholarships are available, so don't be dissuaded if your kids have an interest.  

The camp's capacity is capped at 15 students, so there will be plenty of opportunities to work directly with the instructors.

Check out a PDF of the tentative daily schedule, and then head over to the Girls in Music & Technology page to learn how to apply.

Christopher Porter is a library technician and the editor of Pulp.