Arrival & What to Bring

Slam Poetry Camp

Dear Camper,

Thank you for enrolling in the 2015 Gustavus Adolphus College Summer Institute of Spoken Word and Poetry Slam. We are getting excited to work with you in hopes of sharing our love for the spoken word.

The Gustavus Summer Institute of Spoken Word and Poetry Slam is the first program ever of its kind: An academic camp that invites high school students from all over the country to attend a seven day intensive course that is facilitated by the most successful poetry slam artists in the past decade. Students should expect to leave camp with an initial mastery of both stage and page poetry, their first completed poetry set and product (CD, chapbook, etc), all while belonging to a permanent network of artists who can offer advice and mentorship in the future. Additional chapbooks can be purchased for $15 per chapbook.

Our mission is to inspire youth everywhere to embrace the current spoken word movement and bestow the knowledge and skills needed for literary excellence and commercial success.

In order to facilitate your planning, I thought it would be good to share with you some important logistical information. First, you are free to check in anytime between 3:00 and 4:30 pm on Sunday, June 21st. Please enter campus via College Avenue where you will find signs clearly indicating the direction to the Jackson Campus Center. You will find parking lots located directly in front of the Jackson Campus Center. Please report to the lower level of the Jackson Campus Center to obtain your room key, housing assignment, and institute mementoes. Once you have checked in, a staff member will escort you to your dorm room. Our first official function will begin at 5 pm. Sunday’s schedule will be as follows:

  • 3:00-4:30 pm:      Registration and Final Payment (Jackson Campus Center)
  • 5:00-5:30 pm:      Institute of Spoken Word and Poetry Slam Orientation
  • 5:30-6:30pm:       Supper (Jackson Campus Center)
  • 6:30-7:30 pm:      Getting to know ya activities
  • 7:30-8:15 pm:      Warm-ups
  • 8:30-9:30 pm:      Skills Workshop
  • 9:30-10:00 pm:    Ice Cream

First, when packing, you will want to consider bringing the following:

  • Casual summer attire is appropriate for Saturday-Friday. The academic buildings utilized during the day are air-conditioned and can be a bit chilly. Please plan accordingly.
  • Laptop (If you own a laptop, you will have access to our wireless network, but not the printers. It is not a requirement to bring a computer, as you will have access to computer labs. Having a laptop will provide you with more flexibility.)
  • USB Stick/Jump drive
  • Fan
  • Alarm Clock
  • Pillow
  • Blanket (Sheets will be provided.)
  • Toiletries
  • Towel
  • Cash for snacks or a trip to the Gustavus Bookstore
  • Notebook and writing utensils
  • Highlighter
  • Desk lamp
  • Camera
  • Sunscreen

Second, we believe in fostering an atmosphere of spirited competition where students can have fun sharing their art while receiving constructive feedback on their work. Therefore, every night we are going to host a youth poetry slam where students can breathe life into the literature they’ve created during the workshop process. Teams of students will compete in a different themed slam at the close of every evening, and the cumulative points will add up until we crown a championship team at the end of our intensive week. Poetry Slam is an empowering and fun way for students to express themselves, and we believe this daily event will be a highlight for students.

Third, we have assigned a staff member to take high quality pictures for the week. We will load roughly 500 pictures onto a 4GB flash drive for you to take home at the conclusion of the institute. The cost is $20. You will also have the opportunity to purchase an institute photo featuring all staff and students. These photos will not be on the flash drive. The cost per photo is $5. These items need to be ordered at the time of registration. We will also have an institute store featuring snacks, etc. that you may purchase during the week.

Fourth, the daily schedule and faculty biographies are accessible via We have assembled a nationally recognized staff comprised of some of the best slam poets in the country.

Fifth, your remaining tuition balance is due on Sunday, June 21st when you register on campus.

We accept checks (made out to Gustavus Adolphus College), cash, and credit card. Credit card transactions will require a $15 processing fee. We accept Visa, Discover, and MasterCard.

Finally, while we will have fun dedicating an entire week to slam poetry, our goal is for you to leave Slam Camp with a leg up on the competition. Be prepared to have fun, work diligently in order to maximize the opportunities afforded to you throughout the week, and never be tired. Positive attitudes make us happy!

Needed at the time of registration:

  • final payment
  • order for flash drive with camp photos - $20
  • order for camp group photo - $5 each
  • order for additional chapbooks - $15 each

Should you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. I look forward to seeing you on June 21st.

Kristofer B. Kracht
Director of Summer Academic Programs