May 11, 2016

2,000 New Mexico Sixth Graders Spacechat with Virgin Galactic!

To travel to space is the stuff of childhood dreams and better access to space is key to solving many of our planet’s greatest challenges. Through Generation Galactic, Galactic Unite’s Outreach Program, we strive to provide inspiration and practical support to young people to encourage them to pursue a STEM-based education and ensure that future generations are equipped to solve Earth’s greatest challenges.

Our virtual field trips provide online interactive experiences bringing “space” directly into the classroom, where every student gets to talk personally with Future Astronauts and a diverse range of staff from Virgin Galactic and The Spaceship Company.

Ron Rosano, one of our Future Astronauts, runs Galactic Unite’s online classroom program, and has been inviting classrooms from all over the world to hear about space travel and space careers from the team at Virgin Galactic and The Spaceship Company. To date Galactic Unite has hosted over 90 webcasts with 170 Classrooms, reaching 4,700 students, 2,000 of which are at schools that neighbor Spaceport America in New Mexico. Students have discovered what it’s like to work in a spaceship factory, how future astronauts are preparing for their flight to space and what career opportunities there are in the commercial space industry.

As part of our Local Community Outreach initiative, and in association with the Challenger Learning Center of Las Cruces, Ron and our team in New Mexico set a goal to reach every sixth grade student in the Las Cruces Public Schools (LCPS) between January and March of this year. “It was highly rewarding to help organize the ambitious and successful effort of providing sixth grade students in Las Cruces with the opportunity to speak one-on-one with Virgin Galactic engineers, pilots, crew chiefs, office staff, and Future Astronauts. The dawn of a new space age is upon us, and these students are now well informed of the role they can play in future space travel” says Ron Rosano.

“The Virgin Galactic program support for the Challenger Learning Center has been transformational for our students and teachers within the Las Cruces Public Schools.  We are very excited to continue and expand our partnership to build the focus of past, present, and future space travel into core science curriculum for all students” says Melissa DeLaurentis, Coordinator of Secondary STEM Education at Challenger Learning Center/Las Cruces Public Schools.

So, if you’re a space-hungry student or a teacher fascinated with space travel then we’d love to hear from you! Sign up your school or a classroom for an opportunity to Spacechat with Virgin Galactic and you’ll discover that you don’t necessarily need to be a rocket scientist to work in the space industry!