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New STEM Ed Student Experiments Opp. on Intl Space Station for 2012-13

Opportunity for Schools and Districts to Engage Their Grade 5-12 Students in Real Microgravity Experiment Design for Flight to the International Space Station

We Are Truly Inviting Your Students and Community to Be Part of America’s Space Program

TIME CRITICAL:
We are trying to provide enough advance notice for the Mission 3 opportunity so that schools and districts can assess interest with their staff and, if appropriate, move forward with an Implementation Plan before summer break.

Milestone dates:
8-Week Experiment Design Phase: September 17 to November 9, 2012 Selection of Flight Experiments: December 7, 2012 Ferry Flight to ISS: early-April 2013 Ferry Flight Return to Earth: mid-May 2013 National Conference in Washington, DC: early July 2013

PROGRAM OVERVIEW:
The National Center for Earth and Space Science Education, in partnership with NanoRacks, invites communities across the U.S. to participate in SSEP Mission 3 to ISS.

SSEP immerses a community of students in real scientific research of their own design, using a highly captivating spaceflight opportunity on the International Space Station (ISS) - America’s newest National Laboratory, and which will garner the community significant media attention for STEM education.

Each participating community will be provided all launch services to fly a real microgravity research mini-laboratory on ISS from early April to mid-May 2013, and a kit for assembly and loading of their mini-lab.

An 8-week experiment design competition in your community, held Fall 2012, will allow grade 5-12 student teams to design real microgravity experiments vying for the community’s reserved mini-lab slot on ISS. Your student teams write very real but grade level appropriate research proposals, go through a formal proposal review process, and one experiment is selected to fly for your community. This is a true science immersion program where students are asked to be real scientists and go through the exact same process as professional researchers vying for research resources and research opportunities.

Two NASA feature articles on the SSEP program at NASA.gov appeared on the International Space Station RESEARCH page, not education page. NASA considers these students TO BE RESEARCHERS. The program is changing the way students view both science and their ability to do science. It is also changing the way teachers teach science.

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