Press Release

Challenger Center Awarded NASA Education and Public Outreach for Earth and Space Science Grant

By SpaceRef Editor
November 19, 2009
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Challenger Center Awarded NASA Education and Public Outreach for Earth and Space Science Grant
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Alexandria, Virginia – Challenger Center for Space Science Education has received a $274,000 grant from NASA for education and public outreach in Earth and space science. The award is designed for the development of a Space Weather team to enhance the network of 47 Challenger Learning Centers’ signature simulated spaceflight missions. Space Weather is the study of how the Sun influences the Earth and near-Earth space, its impact on the performance of space and ground-based systems, and on human life and health.

A team from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center will assist Challenger Center in the development of activities for the new Space Weather team that will be integrated into the different space simulations that are currently run in a Challenger Learning Center. The Goddard team will also support training for Challenger Learning Center educators in the use of NASA’s Space Weather Action Center classroom resources. Challenger Learning Centers around the world reach more than 400,000 students annually through four simulated space missions – Encounter Earth, Return to the Moon, Voyage to Mars and Rendezvous with a Comet.

Mary Liscombe, Director of the Christa McAuliffe Center at Framingham State College, and a partner in the proposal, said, “We are looking forward to working on the development of the new Space Weather team, based on our prototype, for dissemination through out the Challenger Learning Center network. We welcome the opportunity to assist NASA in the training of our world-class Challenger Learning Center educators in this important field of space science”.

Using space exploration as a theme and simulations as a vehicle, Challenger Center and its international network of 47 Challenger Learning Centers create positive educational experiences that raise students’ expectations of success, fosters a long-term interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and inspires students to pursue studies and careers in these areas.

Challenger Center’s network of Challenger Learning Centers across the United States and in Canada, the United Kingdom, and South Korea reach more than 400,000 students each year through simulated space missions and educational programs, and engage over 40,000 educators through missions, teacher workshops and other programs.

To learn more about Challenger Center for Space Science Education, visit www.challenger.org.

To learn more about NASA’s Space Weather Action Center, visit http://sunearthday.nasa.gov/swac/.

Rita Karl, Director of Education
rkarl@challenger.org
703-535-1345
Challenger Center for Space Science Education
300 N. Lee Street, Suite 301,
Alexandria, VA 22314

SpaceRef staff editor.