Press Release

Spaceship Earth Grants Launches Global Spaceflight Contest

By SpaceRef Editor
September 15, 2014
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Childhood dreams are now within reach and a unique approach to changing the world is underway as Spaceship Earth Grants (SEG) launches a new program to send private citizens to space. With its mission of enabling as many people as possible to have the spaceflight experience, the SEG crew is proud to launch its first contest to crowdfund an open number of spaceflight awards.

“Space is thrilling; however, this is not just about creating thrill rides for people. There are aspects of spaceflight that can generate shifts in perspective to positively and profoundly influence the way people behave and think about our world,” said former NASA Astronaut Leland Melvin, President of Spaceship Earth Grants. “We want to facilitate that positive impact by awarding space travel to enthusiastic individuals who will be influential ambassadors by sharing their new insights with others in a compelling and inspiring way.”

The contest, presented by Star Harbor Space Training Academy, begins today and is very unique. SEG will initially award one space flight for each 50,000 applications, but will increase the number of awards given per 50,000 applications as the number of applicants grows. This unique approach of offering ever-increasing odds will encourage applicants to share the contest opportunity enthusiastically among their family members, friends and communities worldwide, knowing their own chances of being selected increase as the more people apply. 

The SEG Council (judge’s panel) is made up of former NASA astronauts, industry experts, space enthusiasts, celebrity artists, musicians and other influential people representing a wide variety of interests who share our mission of tapping the world’s love of space exploration to benefit our planet, #FlyMeToSpace.

Contest Process:

1. Create a Basic Profile: September 15 – December 31, 2014

Must be 18+

2. Pay the Application Fee: Application fee is $15 – 90 USD

The fee is adjusted according to the relative wealth of the applicant’s home nation, providing opportunities for all of Earth’s citizens to participate.

Until we meet a minimum set of requirements that are unique to their states/provinces, we cannot accept applications from New York, Florida or Quebec.

3. Complete Application: Must be complete by December 31, 11:59:59pm EST, 2014

Full application to include a short written summary

90 second video answering the question “How will you use this experience to better yourself, your community or our planet?”

Applications may be in English, Spanish, French, Japanese, Arabic, Russian or Mandarin

4. Social Media Rally Period: January 5 – February 28, 2015

During this phase applicants are encouraged to leverage their social media networks to garner wider attention and support for why they should be chosen.

5. List of Finalists Announced by SEG Council: March 20, 2015

The primary selection criteria will be the applicants’ demonstration of a clear ability to communicate and a desire to convert their spaceflight experience into a planetary benefit upon their return.

Additional selection criteria will also include the level of the applicant’s engagement in the campaign as well as the engagement of the globe with the applicant.

Consideration will be given to applicants on a regional basis in an effort to ensure winners represent the diverse geographic locations of the applicant pool.

6. Grant Winners Announced by SEG Council: April 12, 2015

On the 54th anniversary of the first human spaceflight, winners of the largest effort to propel humanity into space will be announced.

Award Packages include:


A trip aboard the winner’s choice of spaceflight providers currently available at time of award announcement

Spaceflight Training package from Star Harbor Space Training Academy

Travel expenses including coach airfare to/from home country, food/housing and ground transportation


For the first 5,000 profiles created, 1 in every 100 will be selected for a total of 50 Parabolic Flight Awards (full application must be complete by 11:59:59pm EST Dec 31, 2014 to qualify — same selection criteria applies)

A percentage of funds generated will be granted to outstanding organizations around the world that share our mission of creating a world that works for everyone. Initial grants will be made to partner organizations: Fragile Oasis, The Overview Institute, The Planetary Society and Project Nominate. SEG looks forward to launching its organization and project grant program next year after individual winners of the contest are selected.

For more information and full contest terms and conditions, visit

For full media kit and images:

About Spaceship Earth Grants

Spaceship Earth Grants Corp. (SEG), a Public Benefit Corporation, is committed to making the space experience accessible to as many people as possible. SEG offers applicants a chance to travel to space while helping to fund efforts and organizations that are making a significant positive impact on planet Earth. SEG will be providing grants to individuals and organizations that are likewise committed to bettering their communities. For more information, visit

About Star Harbor Space Training Academy

Star Harbor Space Training Academy will be the first-in-the-world publicly accessible, fully comprehensive and environmentally immersive space training academy. The Star Harbor team is led by CEO Maraia Hoffman and includes former NASA Astronauts Leland Melvin and Ron Garan. More information about Star Harbor will be announced in October.

The following files are available for download:




Holly Hitchcock

[email protected]

SpaceRef staff editor.