Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp

Since 1972, PSU has teamed up with Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp (MHKC), a nonprofit organization, to help make camp activities accessible to kids and adults with developmental disabilities. In 1995, PSU’s Special Education program and University Studies department partnered with the camp to create one of PSU’s very first capstone courses. Since then, over 4,000 students have earned PSU credit while serving as camp counselors. 

The 22-acre camp is located east of Portland in the scenic Mt. Hood National Forest. It was founded by the Montavilla Kiwanis Club in 1933, originating as a camp for low-income youth and shifting its focus in the 1950s to serve people with developmental disabilities of all ages. MHKC now welcomes 500-600 campers each year, and with PSU’s involvement, the camp is able to offer a unique 1:1 counselor-to-camper ratio. A staff of about 50 – with a wealth of experience in special education, recreation and other fields – runs the camp and provides training and mentorship to PSU students.