"I am excited to spend 10-plus days doing two of my favorite things: enjoying our beautiful mountains and sharing my passion for WVU and the state of West Virginia. I hope to introduce our unique spirit with individuals who have never experienced it before, and maybe they, too, will become captivated with that same sense of place and want to come back for more."
The forensics exercises, in particular, are expected to draw as many as 5,000 Scouts each day.
"Forensic science is a very popular area right now, and so we thought that if we could take America's youth's interest in forensic science and give some principles behind it, it's a way to get students to engage," said Lang, a former Boy Scout.
"It's the same with cycling — but there's not a real concept of how small of contact there is between the tire and the surface, the notion of friction, how to shift gears, and we're bringing some of the science behind that to the Scouts."
Scouts will speed down 36 miles of downhill mountain biking and can figure out how much energy they need to so and the time it will take them to get from point A to point B.
Some of those same concepts will be applied to ziplining using Newton's Laws of Motion and velocity.
"With riding a zipline, it's fun," Lang said. "But we want them to understand why you can go as fast as you can go. Why can some people go faster than others? And the big zipline will have five scouts on parallel lines, so it will be interesting to compare since everybody will be competitive and we can compare who was the fastest and have a brief discussion of why."
Lang expects 3,000 Scouts to glide down the 3,200-foot zipline, and they will have the opportunity to predict their speed and see how it compares to their actual speed as measured by a radar gun.
They'll also gain an understanding of the Pythagorean Theorem and Newton's second law of motion.
The University is producing a series of posters and banners that show Scouts equations to predict speeds and other factors. Lang said the Scouts will bring smartphones with them, on which they'll use free applications that will allow them to compare their speeds with others.
"WVU recognizes that it's part of its obligation as a land-grant university to serve the state," Lang said. "I think we are also very interested in reaching out to youth in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) areas — that's a piece of national importance.
"So they can take the principles of science and engineering and engage in various scouting activities. And WVU can provide that."