By Shannon Lawlor
The experiences we have as kids can positively or negatively impact the path we choose to take as adults. Every parent can agree that we should each do everything we can to ensure our kids find their passion in life and make a positive change in the world. That’s why every military parent should look into the DoD STARBASE Academy.

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What Is the DoD STARBASE Academy?

STARBASE Academy is a youth outreach program conducted by the Department of Defense. The program primarily targets kids in the fifth grade and focuses on students who are historically underrepresented in the STEM field. This includes, but isn’t limited to, the following:
  • Students from inner cities or rural communities.
  • Socio-economically disadvantaged children.
  • Kids who struggle with their academic performance.
  • Children with disabilities.
Students in the STARBASE Academy are exposed to topics and engaging hands-on activities in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Kids participating in the program can work directly with military personnel and observe STEM applications in a professional setting. The program aims to encourage students to pursue careers in these fields as they further their education. But it also encourages students to set goals they can achieve for themselves… all in a fun summer camp setting.

STARBASE Summer Camp

STARBASE Academy is hosted during the summer. The program has 25 hours of instruction that runs for one week and serves over 90,000 students annually at the 70+ military installations STARBASE is partnered with. One of the most recent partnerships approved was at Fort Drum. STARBASE Summer Camp prepares engaging activities to inspire the participants in the program. Don’t believe us? Check out the list below for a small example of what kids are exposed to in the program. This list shows what the Fort Drum DoD STARBASE Academy was exposed to during their STARBASE Camp experience:
  • Vehicle and Medical simulators.
  • Blackhawk helicopter simulator.
  • New York National Guard maneuver training equipment.
  • 10th Mountain Division.
  • The Fort Drum Museum.
  • Activities in the lab.
Pretty cool, huh? This is only one example of what the curriculum could look like in this military STEM program. So, it’s no surprise that signing your kid up to participate in the program is an investment in your child’s future.

Why Choose a Military STEM Program for Kids?

This leads us to the question, “Why choose military STEM programs for kids?” These youth outreach programs don’t just give kids something fun to do in their free time before school. They make a lasting impact. Kids who might be drawn toward a future in STEM are inspired by the activities and demonstrations. It helps them set goals for their future that will encourage them to overcome the difficult and sometimes disheartening path some have to take to pursue a future in STEM. STARBASE Summer Camp is an excellent option to jumpstart this inspiration. The STARBASE Academy is only one example of a program you can sign up for. If you’re looking for another program near you, it’s easy to find other options when you Google “Military STEM programs near me.” The DoD STARBASE Academy sets kids up for success and helps them have a good time while they’re preparing for their future.

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