The GEMS program at United States Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine (USARIEM) and Natick Soldier Systems Center (NSSC) focusses on rising 5th to 9th graders.  The program offers three different curricula (GEMS I, GEMS II, and GEMS III) that is geared for rising 5th-7th graders, rising 6th-8th graders, and rising 7th-9th graders, respectively.  The GEMS program is open to the public and is aimed to reach students who are historically underrepresented in STEM.  GEMS schedule includes learning about neuroscience, biochemistry, biomechanics, and physics.  Sample classes include making bottle rockets and understanding physics, conducting fun physical training to understand biomechanics, and isolating DNA.

GEMS I: Rising Grades 5-7

GEMS II: Rising Grades 6-8

GEMS III: Rising Grades 7-9

*NOTE: There will be no stipends for students who participate in GEMS virtually in summer 2021. 

Eligibility for Students

All participants must be United States or US Permanent Legal Residents. All participants are eligible for an educational stipend.  Priority will go to children from groups who are historically underrepresented in STEM.

Information for Volunteers

GEMS is looking for Near Peer Mentors.  Local college and high school students, spend your summer mentoring the next generation of innovators.  GEMS relies on local college and high school students to work alongside teachers and Army research scientists to provide inquiry-based, hands-on lab experiments and activities. This is not just a summer work opportunity but a way to give back to your local community.  GEMS Near-Peer Mentors receive a stipend based on experience and education level.

  • If you are 16 years of age or older,
  • If you want to mentor other students with hands-on experiments in Army Laboratories,
  • And if you have the desire to share your passion for STEM with other students, or have an interest in learning more about Army research then this program is for you!


  • Competitive Stipend
  • Hands on experience in life sciences, forensic science, computer science, and engineering
  • Local or virtual internships available
  • Expand your professional network within the Department of Defense
  • Mentor and Teach America’s Future
  • 4 or 8 week internships available
  • Work in teams with other college students from across the Nation

Additional Details

  • High School Juniors or Seniors may apply with leadership and hands-on biomedical or coding experience.
  • Near Peer Mentors will receive training and collaborate with the primary instructors. During the day camp, Near Peer Mentors will interact with middle and high school participants full time by assisting and/or leading experiments/challenges to include: laboratory experiments, coding (block and Python), engineering, and robotics.
  • Near Peers are selected to teach a specific class.

Apply TODAY! Applications are open till March 1, 2021.

Important Dates

January 1 - March 1, 2021
Near-Peer Mentor and Resource Teacher Applications Open

February 1 - March 31, 2021
Student Applications Open

April 15, 2021
Selected Students Notified

July 12-15, 2021
GEMS 1 Week 1

July 19-22, 2021
GEMS 1 Week 2

July 26-29, 2021
GEMS 2 Week 1

August 2-5, 2021
GEMS 2 Week 2

August 9-12, 2021
GEMS 3 Week 1

August 16-19, 2021
GEMS 3 Week 2

Our Partners

GEMS Natick is provided in cooperation with the USARIEM, United States Army Research Institute for Environmental Medicine in collaboration with:


Interested in This Program?

If you are interested in this program email us. We'd love to hear from you!