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This week was our last week of camp. I didn’t realize how quickly camp, and all of Duke Engage, was going until I woke up Friday.

It was CSI week at camp, and the girls spent the week trying to figure out who committed the crime. I was one of the culprits, and so I spent the week trying to not spoil it to the girls the first day. It was a fun week, but more than anything, it was a week of reflecting on the progress the girls had made at camp. Girls who wouldn’t look at anyone the first day were now laughing at full tables during lunch, and girls who had been coming to camp for years had new experiences and memories.

Friday we spent the morning setting up for the last day celebration called Eurekathon. We had been wearing the same outfit of jeans and a black t shirt for four weeks but for the last day we got to change into nicer clothes. The girls spent the morning writing notes to staff, writing in each other’s yearbooks, and doing a talent show. It was the perfect last day and there was so much joy and happiness in the room.

The parents arrived around two, and after about thirty minutes of everyone settling into their seats we began awards. One girl from each class was given an award, and then there were overall camp superlatives. Lastly, all the tenth graders received certificates as it was there last year. There were speeches from many girls about their camp experiences, and it was really nice to hear how camp had changed many of the girls.

I didn’t expect to cry or even tear up, but during the speeches I got pretty emotional. These were girls I cared so much about, and hearing how much they loved camp made me realize the extent of my impact. At the end, the girls swarmed the staff to say goodbye, and I completely broke down.

The girls at Eureka are going to change the world. I know it. They are so talented, smart, caring, and capable, and I hope that I have helped them realize their potential even in the slightest.