Join the AICL Board!

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We invite all AICL Summer Camp Fans to consider running for the board! Nominations will be open from December 15 to 31. Then in January, members will elect two board members to a three-year term.

Here are nuts and bolts--

  • Board members serve on or chair committees such as alumni, development, and finance. They could assist with outreach or use their professional expertise to help AICL plan for the future.

  • Board members volunteer such services 8 hours a month OR donate or individually raise one week of residential tuition.

  • The board meets approximately every six weeks via video conference and once a year for an in-person winter meeting.

Serving on the board is a great way to help the Appalachian Institute for Creative Learning achieve its mission--

We offer exciting and challenging programs for talented and gifted students. Through outreach and scholarships, we foster a racially and economically diverse community. At AICL, we see everyone as both a learner and a teacher. We encourage social and intellectual interactions that will enable our students to fulfill their personal, professional, and academic potential. Because we build curricula based on the idea that learning is fun and should be ongoing, we prepare our students to engage our complex world with insight, empathy, and confidence.

Think you might want to run? Send a short bio by December 31st that describes any relevant professional and/or board experience as well as a few lines on why you are interested in serving on the board. Know someone who would be great? Spread the word! Let us know! We're happy to answer questions.


Susan Goslee, Board President

Maggie Renken, Executive Director


Hello from AICL’s new Executive Director!

I’m honored and thrilled to serve as AICL’s inaugural Executive Director. I have a general passion for summer camps, for fostering motivated children in unique and impactful ways, and for the Blue Ridge mountains. AICL provides a much-needed space for children to be expressive and to belong to something special. I’ve been impressed with AICL’s mission since my oldest daughter first attended camp in 2016.


My advocacy for work like that of AICL’s extends beyond my parenthood into my professional life. A lifelong love of imagining, exploring, and learning has led to a variety of professional experiences with camp. My earliest employment was leading summer enrichment programs for economically disadvantaged youth in South Carolina and later as the director of a summer day camp in the mountains of NC. From 2006-2010, I served as a graduate fellow and Project Manager for a National Science Foundation project designed to introduce K-12 students to STEM. I oversaw teacher trainings, program development, and graduate student fellows responsible for converting their STEM expertise into accessible and engaging classroom content. This content was delivered in expos and lessons across the state of Wyoming, as well as during our annual Exploring Science Summer Camps.

Since completing a PhD in Developmental Psychology in 2011, my professional focus has been as a tenure track professor at Georgia State University in the College of Education and Human Development’s Educational Psychology program. I teach human growth and development, cognition, and facilitating college teaching courses. I also secure internal and external grants to fund research targeting learning and learning environments in K-16 populations. In a current project, colleagues and I are introducing urban youth to computing skills with the help of mentors recruited from Morehouse College, Spelman College, and Clark University.

Camp, and the learning opportunities it fosters, continues to be a theme in my work as an academic scholar. Now, I’m committed to applying my expertise to benefit AICL’s programs and their growth and development. I look forward to getting to know AICL board members, staff, students, alumni, parents, and volunteers better over the next year. Please don’t hesitate to contact me directly as we embark on this journey together.


Maggie Renken