Southwest ATC student earns NASA scholarship grant


Southwest Applied Technology College student Joseph Dec was awarded a $5,000 NASA scholarship grant in computer programming.

The Utah NASA Space Grant Consortium received a NASA grant for a scholarship to be awarded to a student attending Southwest ATC.

Eligible applicants must pursue a certificate in a Science, Technology, Engineering or Mathematics field, according to a news release.

Southwest ATC opened applications to students in programs related to, or supportive of the space industry such as health science, welding, industrial maintenance, information technology, business technology, automotive technology and other STEM related programs.

“Joey is a very strong academic student. He has advanced through his studies faster than any student this year and has acquired the industry standard certifications to back it up,” said Program Coordinator Coston Perkins. “Dec will be a poster child of the Program’s soon-to-be success.”

The student shared his excitement when discussing the grant received. “This grant gives me the ability to continue my education and to become more than I would have been able to become otherwise,” Dec said.  He said he chose Southwest ATC because the campus offered a focused approach to computer programming.  “I have a strong passion for technology,” Dec said. “With programming there are unlimited possibilities.”

Dec is on track to complete his program this school year and the campus will be prepared to celebrate his graduation and his steps to employment.

Student Travel Grant Opportunity

The Gerald A. Soffen Memorial Fund is pleased to announce the final 2015 Travel Grant application opportunity for undergraduate and graduate students pursuing studies in fields of space science and engineering.

The Travel Grants, in the amount of $500, enable student recipients to attend professional meetings to present their research. The Fall 2015 Travel Grant application deadline is October 1, 2015. Jerry Soffen, a biologist by training, led a distinguished career in NASA, including serving as the Project Scientist for Viking and as an architect for the NASA Astrobiology Institute. The Travel Grant continues Jerry’s dedication to educating and involving future generations in space science and engineering pursuits. The electronic application materials and instructions are located on the Soffen Fund website:

Space Career Day at the 2015 Small Satellite Conference

In an effort to meet workforce challenges head-on, the Space Foundation is hosting SPACE CAREER DAY on Monday, August 10, from 7:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. during the 2015 Small Satellite Conference, at the Utah State University. Our goal is to connect companies and organizations in need of highly skilled employees with individuals looking to become part of a growing aerospace industry.  In the past several years, Space Foundation Career Day activities held during our annual Space Symposium resulted in the hiring of a number of students.

Graduate and undergraduate students enrolled in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) degree programs are invited to attend at no cost! The participating companies have underwritten the program.

PRE-REGISTRATION is encouraged for planning purposesAttending the SmallSat Conference is not required in order to attend Space Career Day.  

Space Career Day Flier


Student Astronaut Contest

StudentAstronaut Contest Flyer

The #StudentAstronaut Contest will give one student an opportunity to experience what it is like to train like a scientist astronaut and be featured on our show. The contest will be a video contest where students will be asked to answer a series of questions. We are looking for students (age 16+ in HS or Undergrad) who are great science communicators and ambassadors for space exploration.

Major STEM Opp (G5-16 ) September 2015 – Student Experiments on Int’l Space Station

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The National Center for Earth and Space Science Education, the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education, and NanoRacks announce Mission 9 to the International Space Station. This STEM education opportunity immerses grade 5-16 (pre-college and 2- and 4-year college and university) students across a community in an authentic, high visibility research experience, where student teams design and propose real microgravity experiments to fly in low Earth orbit on the International Space Station. The program nurtures ownership in learning, critical thinking, problem solving, navigation of an interdisciplinary landscape, and communication skills – all reflective of the Next Generation Science Standards, the skills needed by professional scientists and engineers, and the skills desired by 21st century employers.

Each participating community will be provided a real microgravity research mini-laboratory capable of supporting a single experiment, and all launch services to fly the experiment to the International Space Station in Spring 2016, and return is safely to Earth for student harvesting and analysis. A 9-week experiment design competition in each community, held September through November 2015, and locally engaging typically 300 students, allows student teams to design and formally propose real experiments vying for their community’s reserved mini-lab on Space Station. A formal 2-step proposal review process, mirroring professional review, will determine the community’s flight experiment. Content resources for teachers and students support foundational instruction on science in microgravity and experimental design. Additional programming leverages the experiment design competition to engage the community, embracing a Learning Community Model for STEM education. This includes a local art and design competition for a Mission Patch to accompany the flight experiment to Station. SSEP is therefore more suitably characterized as a community-wide STEAM experience.

TIME CRITICAL: all interested communities are asked to inquire by April 30, 2015; schools and districts need to assess interest with their staff and, if appropriate, move forward with an Implementation Plan. Communities must be aboard by August 31, 2015, for a 9-week experiment design and proposal writing phase from September 7 to November 6, 2015. The flight experiment will be selected by December 17, 2015. Launch of the Mission 9 to ISS “Endeavor” experiments payload is expected in Spring 2016.

NEXT STEP: carefully read the SSEP Home page, which provides an Executive Summary of the Program and the Mission 9 to ISS Flight Opportunity:

Launching 2 Learn

The Launching 2 Learn (L2L) project is a four-week hands-on experience that teaches the science and math behind high power rockets (HPR). The central goal of the project is to contribute to retention efforts for the underserved and underrepresented in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The project aims to increase STEM-literacy, raise confidence in technical abilities, and encourage students to continue with their pursuits of higher education in STEM fields. The experience will take place in summer 2015 at the NASA Kennedy Space Center, from July 6th through July 31st. The application deadline is April 20, 2015. The L2L project is designed for undergraduate freshman and sophomores majoring in STEM and related fields. Students with disabilities, ethnic minorities, and females are encouraged to apply.

Student Receives $5,000 NASA STEM Scholarship

Student Receives $5,000 NASA STEM ScholarshipMichael Gallagher just received the exciting news that he was selected to receive a $5,000 scholarship from the Utah NASA Space Grant Consortium. He competed against 10 other students from the tech college in areas of Advanced Welding, Computer Aided Design, Industrial Automation Maintenance, Information Technology, Machining and Software Development.

Michael started at the Ogden Weber Tech College in January, 2015. In the short amount of time that he has been enrolled, he has demonstrated to his instructors that he has strong study and disciplinary skills. This discipline comes from serving in the Utah National Guard for eight years, including one deployment to Iraq. Michael’s progress and attendance are at 100%.

Michael states that in his research to decide what he wanted to do, Web Development resonated with him the most. He had an early introduction to this field as both his father and brother have been involved in the computer industry, with his brother currently working at the NASA Goddard Space Center.

With the ability to develop Web software applications, he sees the future of web development in the client-side/server-side scripting and network security configuration, as one that has no end to the possibilities. He would ultimately like to develop educational websites for science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Michael has taken on schooling as his full-time job and is very committed to completing this program and continuing his education to receive a bachelor’s degree.