Project GEMS' original milestones indicated that by the final year, a business model would have been developed and disseminated. With the dissolution of Javits funding, this objective was not pursued in its entirety. Although a formal model was not developed, several partnerships were formed. GEMS Academy students had the opportunity to take part in multiple on-site learning experiences as well as learning from various field-related experts coinciding with units of study including Mammoth Cave National Park, Trace Die Cast, General Motors, National Waste Recycler Systems, Griffin Industries, and ACS Group.
As GEMS Academy instructors conducted individual student-teacher conferences at the beginning of each spring semester, it became quite clear that most students, not surprisingly, valued opportunities for learning in the field. This reinforced the notion that field experiences tied directly to course content were far richer than random trips to a zoo or a science museum. Students were able to see science and mathematics at work in authentic settings as they conducted water quality testing, explored the biodiversity of local ecosystems, or met with engineers in an industrial setting. Additionally, the teachers found that quality learning experiences need not cost a lot of money. Simply pairing fourth grade students with mentors from a local Advanced Placement Physics class was a highlight for many GEMS Academy students.