Galactic Unite – Virgin Galactic’s outreach initiative – has partnered with Ultimate Software to offer a new STEM scholarship for students at New Mexico State University.The scholarship has been created through a shared passion to drive positive change for young people through harnessing the power of space and will launch in the fall of 2019. It will see five students awarded a one-year-long scholarship that includes 12 months mentoring with a Virgin Galactic team member. It will be granted to undergraduate students studying a degree in engineering at NMSU College of Engineering.NMSU has a large number of students pursuing careers in STEM industries and is home to the Atomic Aggies Club, a student organization enthusiastic about high-powered model rockets and practice safe rocketry at the intercollegiate engineering competition.
Virgin Galactic is launching this scholarship as it continues its relocation from Mojave, California to its commercial headquarters at Spaceport America, New Mexico.
The ‘Gateway to Space’ building will be the point of departure to, and return from, space for Future Astronauts and is now operationally ready. Last week the communal Gaia Lounge area, designed for use by Virgin Galactic customers and their families, was unveiled alongside the Cirrus spaceflight operations floor.There are now 109 Virgin Galactic team members based in New Mexico preparing the Gateway to Space for commercial service, with the rest set to join when SpaceShipTwo moves across from Mojave.
George Whitesides, CEO of Virgin Galactic, said, “New Mexico has played a pivotal role in the history of human space exploration. We’re delighted to be supporting New Mexico’s future leaders in space through this scholarship while we launch the world’s first commercial spaceline from the state at the same time.”
“We welcome the strong support by Virgin Galactic of NMSU as a whole and including financial aid for our students. Their continued generosity is noteworthy and we look forward to expanding the partnership across multiple colleges over the months and years ahead,” said New Mexico State Chancellor Dan Arvizu.
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About Virgin Galactic:
Virgin Galactic and The Spaceship Company form a vertically-integrated aerospace company pioneering human spaceflight for private individuals and researchers. It believes the commercial exploration of space represents one of the most exciting and significant technology initiatives of our time. It is embarking on this commercial exploration journey with a mission to put humans into space and return them safely to earth on a routine, consistent and affordable basis. Using its proprietary and reusable technologies, and supported by a distinctive, Virgin–branded customer experience, it is developing a spaceflight system designed to offer customers a unique, multi-day experience culminating in a spaceflight that includes several minutes of weightlessness and views of Earth from space. It is in the final stages of development, having already completed two crewed flights of its vehicle into space, and anticipate initial commercial launch in 2020.
About Galactic Unite:
Galactic Unite is Virgin Galactic’s outreach initiative born out of a unique collaboration between the Future Astronaut community and Sir Richard Branson’s Foundation, Virgin Unite. Together they seek to drive positive change for young people by channeling their collective energy and resources – working to ensure that future generations are equipped to apply the space perspective to Earth’s greatest challenges. Galactic Unite offers both practical support and a planetary perspective to the engineers of the future. It harnesses the power of space to support and inspire young people to pursue an education in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).
About Ultimate Software:
Ultimate Software is a leading global provider of cloud-based human capital management and employee experience solutions. Our award-winning UltiPro delivers HR, payroll, talent, and time and labor management, as well as HR service delivery solutions. Founded in 1990, Ultimate is headquartered in Weston, Florida, and employs more than 5,400 professionals. In 2019, Fortune magazine and Great Place to Work ranked Ultimate #1 on their Best Workplaces in Technology list, in the “Large Companies” category, Ultimate’s fourth consecutive year to top the list. Ultimate was ranked #2 on PEOPLE’s Companies that Care list, Ultimate’s third consecutive year in the top three of the list. More information on Ultimate’s products and services can be found at www.ultimatesoftware.com.