North Central College - Naperville, IL

Cardinal Camps

Registration for the 2017 Cardinal Camps (September 1 - 4, 2017) will be available in the Winter. 

Below is the 2016 information and gives a great overview of what the program entails.

Questions? Contact the Office of Orientation at 630-637-5410.

First-Year Students: Sign up for a CARDINAL CAMP to get a valuable jump-start to your college experience.  Each unique opportunity is designed to connect you with new friends, faculty and staff while introducing the core values that are central to a North Central College liberal arts education.  Shared moments of adventure, discussion, exploration and service provide an unforgettable immersion into life as a Cardinal – a life that will be shaped into an “informed, involved, principled and productive” leader.

Going to college is one of life’s most important transitions. Studies show that if you start college well, you’ll not only finish well but make the most of the amazing opportunities in between. Cardinal Camps help you get acclimated socially, academically and emotionally, and set you on course for an engaging and successful college journey.  Choose a camp that best fits your interests:

Wilderness Camps | $200* 

HoneyRock CampWilderness camps take place in the scenic Northwoods of Wisconsin or the majestic terrain of southwest Utah.  These remote locations provide the perfect backdrop to connect, reflect and transition to college while making great memories with new classmates, faculty and staff. Enjoy an adventure in the great outdoors while being challenged to sharpen your character, teamwork and leadership.


Hiking Expedition
Explore the great Northwoods with a backpack, a tent, and a group of new friends while discussing the journey ahead of you in life.  If you can tame the wilderness on this three-day hike, you’ll be more than ready for your college expedition. All levels of experience (or lack thereof) welcome.
Led by Kevin McCarthy, associate dean of students 

Leadership Challenge
Chart your course as a future leader through outdoor challenges, team competitions, recreational sports and reflective discussions. Nature-lovers, sports enthusiasts, and adventure-seekers wanted.
Led by Lydia Pond, coordinator of recreational sports, and Dr. Abby VanHorn, assistant director of leadership programs

The Nature of Faith
Breathe in the crisp Northwoods air under a sanctuary of pines while reflecting on the journey of faith ahead of you in college.  You’ll experience the time-tested model of retreating to the wilderness to explore ancient spiritual practices like prayer, meditation, solitude and silence.
Led by Rev. Eric Doolittle, college chaplain


Reading the Desert *($225)
Join faculty and new friends on a trip to the Arches and Canyonlands National Parks in southeastern Utah while engaging in the work of renowned environmental writers.  Combining hiking and camping with in-depth discussion and reflection, you’ll be fully engaged both physically and intellectually.
Led by Dr. Jon Visick, professor of biology, and Dr. Martha Bohrer, associate professor of english

Urban Camps | $200 | 

Urban CampsAll urban camps take place in downtown Chicago and introduce you to the cultural diversity of one of America's great cities.  You'll reside at a hostel in the Loop with convenient access to museums, entertainment venues, and unique neighborhoods where you will learn and serve.  You'll get a taste of the food, art and culture that make Chicago a great neighbor.

Chicago Theater
Experience a variety of top-notch theater productions, meet industry professionals, and discuss the Chicago theater scene. Whether you are an aspiring theater professional or simply love a good show, you’ll have to suspend your disbelief about the amount of fun you’ll have.
Led by Carin Silkaitis, assistant professor of theater  

Social Innovation
Investigate complex urban challenges and hang out with innovative non-profit leaders, business executives and social entrepreneurs who are changing the world one idea at a time.
Led by Whitney Roberts, assistant director for civic engagement

Windy City Sports
Explore, learn, and play in one of America's greatest sports towns; visit games, tour parks, meet sports industry professionals, and get a behind-the-scenes glimpse of how it all happens.
Led by Jared Bogan, director of alumni engagement

Interactive Media
Tour the landscape of Chicago’s media world where web, broadcast, print, design and technology converge – and document your own experience!
Led by Kay O’Donnell, assistant professor of journalism

Reading the City
Experience Chicago in a new way - as a “text” that you can read and write yourself.  You’ll be immersed in the rich cultural landscape of the city with a group of new friends, while creating a map of Chicago by observing spaces, listening to residents, and learning histories.
Led by Dr. Kristin Geraty, assistant professor of sociology, director of college honors programs


Science Immersion
Dive deep into the world of science with new friends and experienced faculty.  Get hands-on experience conducting laboratory research and outdoor field work, meet local science professionals, and get a sneak peak of the College’s amazing new Science Center.
Led by Dr. Gregory Ruthig, assistant professor of biology

Premier Scholars | No Cost

Premier ScholarsThe Premier Scholars program is a unique opportunity for students who otherwise may face a disadvantage in college because of economic, cultural or educational circumstances. You'll experience a real class, live in your residence hall, get acclimated to campus and make some great friends. When you're not immersed in campus life, you'll explore the cultural, service and recreational activities in the Naperville and Chicago areas.
Led by Dorothy Pleas, director of multicultural affairs  [More info/Apply Here]


For more information about Cardinal Camps, contact the Office of Orientation at 630-637-5410.