The Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG) GEMS program is a joint/collaborative effort among several organizations on APG, including the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command’s (CCDC) – U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command – Army Research Laboratory (CCDC-ARL) and CCDC -C5ISR Center along with the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Chemical Defense (MRICD). Additionally other organizations on APG often support GEMS with technical displays, tours and laboratory instruction.

Program Overviews

GEMS I: Students entering the 5th-7th grade will experience a wide range of laboratory experiences from synthesis, fabrication, and instrumentation/analysis.  The GEMS I Program has a large focus area in 4 labs throughout the week along with smaller group lab activities taught by college level students.  The 2019 GEMS I program has sessions on chemistry, biology, physics, engineering, math, and earth science.  For questions regarding GEMS I please contact the MRICD Team at Drop off and pick up of selected students for GEMS I will be Monday-Thursday 8:30am and 3:30pm on Aberdeen Proving Ground.
*** GEMS I sessions will be held June 22-25, July 13-16, and July 27-30

GEMS II: Students entering 7th-10th grade will experience a wide range of laboratory experiences in various disciplines to include environmental science, chemistry, physics, computer science, robotics, materials science and biology. The GEMS II program has a hands-on approach with numerous labs throughout the week lead by Army scientists and engineers. For questions about GEMS II, please contact us at or 1-800-807-9852.  Drop off and pick up of selected students for GEMS II will occur Monday-Thursday 8:00am and 4:00pm on Aberdeen Proving Ground.
***GEMS II sessions will be held June 22-25, July 6-9, July 20-23 and August 3-6.

GEMS III: C5ISR Center R&D Deep Dive (July 20-23): Students entering 10th-12th grade will get an up close look at the research and development happening across several Aberdeen Proving Ground Directorates within the Command, Control, Communications, Computer, Cyber, Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance (C5ISR) Center. This years GEMS III program will not focus solely on one specific area of STEM, but rather a range of topics such as Alternative and Renewable Energy, Satellite Communication, Radio Frequency, Computer Science, Virtual Technology and more, giving participants an in depth concept of the inner workings across the C5ISR Center campus. This Deep Dive will offer various topic lessons facilitated by our world-renowned Scientist and Engineers, while also giving participants the chance to have a hands-on learning experience with some of the technologies touched on in each subject area.

GEMS III: Computer Science Principles (July 6-9): Students entering 10th-12th grade will investigate computer science principles, develop basic algorithms, examine programming languages and techniques and explore how computing and technology can impact the world.  Basic programming skills and use of Python programming language is required. Pre-requisite: Students will be requested to complete programming tutorial prior before the start of the first day.

GEMS III Computer Science Applications (July 13-16): This is a fast paced week with hands on exercises providing the student entering 10th-12th grade the opportunity to apply computer science and programming skills learned. Topics may include data analytics, robotics, cryptography and machine learning. Pre-requisite: This is a programming intensive course and students are expected to a) complete a 10-hour online programming tutorial before the start of their first day or b) show a working knowledge of programming by completion a programming exercise or c) completed GEMS III Computer Science Principles I.

GEMS III Immersive Environments (July 27-30): New to the GEMS III portfolio, students entering 10th-12th grade will learn how virtual reality, human factors, emerging technologies, math, science and engineering, students have applications in the real world. Prerequisites: Programming skills or the completion of GEMS III Computer Science Applications.

Important Dates

January 6, 2020
GEMS Student Applications Open

February 29, 2020
GEMS Student Applications Close

Near Peer Mentors will serve as student mentors throughout the GEMS program; serving as role models, sharing personal educational pathway experiences and helping to bridge potential learning gaps between the students and the Army scientists and engineers. Near Peer Mentors may be called upon to develop and instruct laboratory activities. Applicants must be at least 16 years of age and must be U.S.citizens.

Resource Teachers will serve as advisors/mentors throughout the GEMS program; helping to bridge potential instructional and learning gaps between the students and the Army scientists and engineers.  Resource Teachers may be called upon to instruct a lab activity session or assist when Near Peer Mentors are providing instruction.  Resource Teachers will be asked to document lab sessions by creating written age appropriate lesson plans that will facilitate future repeated use of the activity. Applicants must be U.S. citizens.  Current certified teachers are preferred.

Important Dates

November 15, 2020
Near Peer Mentor and Resource Teacher Applications Open

February 29, 2020
Near Peer Mentor and Resource Teacher Applications Close

Interested in this program?

If you are interested in this program email us or call 1-800-807-9852. We'd love to hear from you!