Challenger Center - Moon to Mars Launches Daily

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Space Science Education Organization Enthusiastically Supports Education Findings Issued in Report from Presidential Commission on Space Exploration

Challenger Center for Space Science Education congratulates the President's Commission on Implementation of U.S. Space Exploration Policy for the release of their report on the nation’s new vision for journeys in space. Challenger Center, founded by the families of the astronauts tragically lost during the last flight of the Challenger Space Shuttle, supports the Commission's findings that education, particularly of the next generation of explorers, is a crucial component in transforming the President's vision into history.

The Commission concluded that space exploration "offers an extraordinary opportunity to stimulate mathematics, science, and engineering excellence for America's students and teachers." They also issued a recommendation that teacher training in these subject areas must become a priority: "Such efforts should…emphasize approaches that allow students to experience first-hand the thrill of discovery and innovation."

June Scobee Rodgers, Ph.D., widow of Challenger commander Dick Scobee, Founding Chairman of Challenger Center, and an invited participant who provided testimony at one of the Commission's public hearings, said, "Challenger Center largely exists to introduce today's students to the wonders of space exploration. It has always been our mission that an initial glimpse through a window on the universe would inspire them to become tomorrow’s scientists, engineers, and teachers. We are over the moon that the President’s Commission believes that education must play a part in future space exploration, and we enthusiastically offer the resources of Challenger Center and its education programs to assist."

Bill Gutsch, Ph.D., President and CEO of Challenger Center, said, "As someone who grew up during the Apollo era and later became a scientist, I know that the President's vision to return to the Moon will inspire a new generation of students to do the same. At Challenger Learning Centers throughout the nation, we've been sending students to the Moon and Mars for 18 years, but we look forward to seeing some of our previous guests one day visit the real thing and take another 'small step' for mankind."

About Challenger Center for Space Science Education

Challenger Center is an education organization created in 1986 by the families of the astronauts tragically lost during the last flight of the Challenger Space Shuttle. Dedicated to the educational spirit of that mission, Challenger Center develops Learning Centers and other educational programs that continue the mission to engage students in science and mathematics education. These programs use the excitement of space exploration to create learning experiences that foster lifelong learning in mathematics, science, and technology, and develop critical communication, decision-making, team-building, and collaborative skills. For more information, visit http://www.challenger.org.

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Glenn Ono