New Program to be Located in Renovated Gary Indiana Armory Space
Underutilized storage space at the Indiana National Guard Armory in Gary soon will be re-purposed into a place where Region fifth-graders enhance their knowledge of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
 
The State Budget Committee last week agreed to release $169,280 in previously appropriated state funds, with the federal government providing a matching amount, to construct classrooms, conference rooms and offices in a 3,000-square foot area inside the armory at 2501 E. 15th Ave.
 
When complete, the Gary armory will be home to Indiana's fourth STARBASE program, a federally-funded educational curriculum that uses hands-on, experiential learning to promote STEM knowledge and teamwork.
 
Students and their teachers attend STARBASE for 25 hours over either five consecutive days or one day a week for five weeks.
 
STARBASE instructors, including volunteers, national guardsmen and STEM professionals, use real-world experiments and military equipment to help make abstract science and math concepts meaningful to the students.
 
State Rep. Charlie Brown, D-Gary, said he's confident the Gary STARBASE will be as successful as the STARBASE programs offered in Fort Wayne since 2012, Indianapolis since 2015 and South Bend since 2016.
 
"I am so pleased to see underutilized storage space transformed into an area that will expand the minds of these young people and get them excited about STEM subjects that will literally change the world," Brown said.
 
"Our country needs to focus these outstanding, young minds on these critical subject areas in order to compete in the world's economy and make scientific breakthroughs that will help find cures for cancer, sickle-cell anemia, Alzheimer's disease, diabetes and other diseases."
 
Nationwide, more than 850,000 students, including 5,000 Hoosier children, have attended STARBASE over the past 20 years at National Guard, Army, Navy, Marine, Air Force and Reserve bases across the country.
 
 
Posted: October 2017