This summer the SASDI office hosted a STEM camp for Chicago Public School students. Summer STEM Launch brought together 35 students from 5 Early College STEM Schools (ECSS), as well as two military schools–Rickover Naval Academy and Marine Leadership Academy (formally Marine Math and Science Academy). Students learned more about the innovative STEM fields, gained exposure to careers in the navy, and became acquainted with campus life through workshops, lectures, leadership training, and field trips. Over the course of camp we saw the students’ curiosity and creativity grow, teamwork skills develop, and friendships form. Summer STEM Launch was a great way for students to not only learn more about STEM and the Navy but also make friends from new schools and from different parts of the city.

Check out what we did!

Field Trips!


Stem Launch 2014-Iron Oaks_14961404995_l Tall Ship Sail Windy Sail Pritzker Military Library_14972624485_l















  • Great Lakes Naval Base
    Students explored a naval base accompanied by Commander and visited the nautical navigation school, the flag-training facility, and went on a ship-in-a-bottle training tour.
  • Iron Oaks Adventure Center
    At Iron Oaks students learned team-building skills while participating in fun, outdoor activities such as rock-climbing and crate-stacking!
  • Tall Ship Windy Discovery Sail
    Students learned the physics of sailing during a Tall Ships Discovery Sail on Lake Michigan.
  • The Pritzker Military Museum and Library
    At the Pritzker Museum and Library students viewed artifacts from different military eras and learned more about the history of the United States Military.



STEM Launch 2014 Laser Cutting, Geometric Shapes, and Prototyping_14896036066_l STEM Launch 2014 Wind Turbine Prototyping_14714188050_l Design Workshop and Prototyping_14804294589_l IMG_0741_14858921164_l

  • Monkeybars Hackathon
    During the Monkeybars Hackathon students worked in small groups to conceive and iterate an idea for a mobile application
  • Wind Turbine Prototyping
    Students worked together to design and test wind turbine blades in order to make the most energy-productive prototype
  • Life Mapping
    Dr. Jeremy Watson, from the IIT Leadership Academy, led students through a life mapping activity – allowing them to conceptualize their dreams and aspirations.
  • Scratch Computer Programming
    Instructors from IIT Computer Discovery Camp led the students through a tutorial of computer programming and allowed them to modify a computer game using their knowledge of Scratch.
  • Laser Cutting
    Students toured the IIT Idea Shop and learned how laser cutting works and the possibilities that this new technology has unlocked.
  • Design Thinking
    Dr. David Gatschell from Northwestern led students in a design-thinking workshop during which they came up with a solution to a common shopping problem.

Click HERE to see more pictures from Summer STEM Launch

We are excited to roll out year round programming for the STEM Launch students this FALL!

Summer STEM Launch Comes to Illinois Tech