BALTIMORE -- Hundreds of students smiled with excitement as they explored the Army's latest technology as part of the Maryland Junior Science and Humanities Symposium.

Aberdeen Proving Ground tenant organizations set up exhibits March 17, to demonstrate their work on robots, gas masks, helmets, armor, vests, night-vision goggles and power sources.

Steve Yurechko, lead test engineer for Edgewood Chemical Biological Center's protection factor team, showed students how engineering is applied in the Army through his gas-mask display.

"An event like this allows kids to get a hands-on look at how engineering and science makes a difference in the real world," Yurechko said. "It's beneficial for them to see to get motivated in science. We do [gas] mask testing at our facility. We can show kids how engineering impacts mask design and how it functions."

Diquann Lacunes, a student at Benjamin Franklin High School at Masonville Cove, Md., was visiting JSHS for the first time and said the night-vision display was his favorite.

Julie Goldberg, with the Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center, was part of the night-vision team. She said her goal during the expo was to promote science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, education.

"Continuing education and maintaining an avid interest in technical disciplines is really important [for a career in a STEM field]," Goldberg said. "We have a thermal weapons scope that represents our thermal capabilities that we provide the warfighter. We have different types of night-vision goggles that include ground systems, aviator systems, and a fusion system that uses thermal and image intensification."

Other APG exhibits at the expo included Army Research Laboratory, Army Test and Evaluation Command and APG Veterinary Clinic.