Kids in the Garden Program

Kids in the Garden visit a natural area on the Lumber River

The Kids in the Garden program (KIG), funded by Burroughs-Wellcome, is a STEM program for rising 7th – 12th grade students from Bladen, Cumberland, Richmond and Robeson Counties, as well as the surrounding area, to investigate the mystery of colony collapse in honey bees at the UNC Pembroke campus garden and the importance of pollen and pollinators in the environment. 

Students who participate in the program experience STEM related content to its fullest extent! Students conduct research in a college setting; take field trips such as to BASF, the Bahr lab, visit a commercial bee operation and Cape Fear Botanical Gardens to learn about the importance of honey bees, pollen, and pollinators; and conduct research at various field sites. Snacks, supplies, transportation, activity fees, and equipment used during the program are provided. Parents are responsible for transportation to and from UNCP. 

FREE Fall/Spring (2019-2020) Program -- for middle and high school students currently in the 6th – 12th grades:

The Saturday morning program from 9:00 AM - 12:30 PM begins on September 14th and runs through November 16th,  2019, and then from January 18 – March 21, 2020.  The goal of this program is to conduct individual research to be entered in various science competitions, such as the NC Science Fair and/or to present your research at science meetings, which occur in the spring.  Students work in research teams of two or three on science research with scientists and undergraduate science majors from UNCP! The fall/spring program includes field trips and we explore STEM careers too.

FREE June 2020 Summer Camp  – for middle and high school students or those CURRENTLY in middle and high school when the program begins. The two-week summer camp experience called the “bee camp” will occur from June 15th to June 26th, 2020, Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM (lunch and snacks provided).

Are you in middle school or high school? Are you interested in learning about science, engineering, and technology through doing tons of great science experiments and activities? Do you want to explore careers in science, technology, and engineering? Do you love flowers, to go outside and look at things, to learn about bees and beekeeping, and to go on field trips? Then our program is for you!

This FREE two-week summer day camp at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke will introduce you to the exciting research of pollinators, insects, plants, and pollen! You’ll go on field trips, participate in hands-on experiments, and learn from professors and college students what it is like to be scientists. Come and join in on the fun!

For additional information please contact Dr. Rita Hagevik at or Anastasia Oxendine at or see the links below for informational brochures.  Applications will be accepted through May 2020, and twenty-four students will be selected to participate in the summer program.  Parents will be notified of acceptance at the end of May.

Apply now for the fall/spring (2019-2020) program!

Cick here to read about the 2019 float trip on the Lumber River!

Tell your friends and apply now!

Applications can be completed online using the web form below.

Activities/opportunities include:

  • UNCP Campus Garden – Kids in the Garden Outreach Booth
  • Academic year program on Saturday mornings at UNCP
  • Bee Camp during the last two weeks of June at UNCP
  • BEE the Change Teacher Workshops – Focus on Literacy
  • BEE the Change Science Curriculum – Middle and High School
  • Demonstration Pollinator Gardens – Robeson Co. Early College/Robeson Community College (Robeson Co.), Jack Britt High School (Cumberland), Tar Heel Middle School (Bladen Co.)

For additional information contact the Kids in the Garden team – Dr. Rita Hagevik at

The Kids in the Garden programs are possible because of generous support from the Burroughs-Wellcome fund (middle and high school program) and Duke Energy Foundation (elementary program), with additional support from Robeson County Farm Bureau and UNC Pembroke.

Kids in the Garden Application 

Please complete the application below. If you have any questions feel free to email Anastasia Oxendine, KIG Program Director at or Rita Hagevik at

Where: UNCP Oxendine Science Building

Student Information


To be Completed by Parent/Guardian

We ask this question to make sure all students from all socioeconomic groups have an opportunity to participate in our program.

Yearly Income

Additional Information

In order to best meet the needs of all participants, please describe below any special needs that your child has. Additionally, please provide any other information that you think is important for the selection committee to consider in regards to your child's application for this program. 

Parent/Guardian Support

My signature below indicates that I have read and understand all the information included in my child's application and that my child's application for the Kids in the Garden requires them to attend 10 Saturday sessions in the Spring (1/2 days).

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Student Signature

Please sign this agreement. I agree that if I am invited to participate in the Kids in the Garden program and I elect to participate that I will follow all the rules of the University of North Carolina at Pembroke and of the Kid's in the Garden instructors. I agree to be a positive participant and to attend all Saturday sessions during the fall and spring semesters. I understand that I am to complete a research project and that I will participate in the Science Fair held at UNCP each February. I also understand that if I violate the rules of UNCP or of the Kids in the Garden project my parents/guardians will be notified, and I may be asked to leave the program.

Sign above