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National Space Club and Foundation Scholars Program:
The National Space Club and Foundation Scholars Program could not function without the enthusiastic involvement of the many dedicated NASA mentors who share their time and knowledge with the Scholars Program interns. The mentors for the 2014 summer program are listed here, with their NASA affiliations. The National Space Club and Foundation and the student interns gratefully acknowledge their contribution to the success of the program.
THANK YOU TO ALL OUR MENTORS!
Shawn David Domagal-Goldman
Jacqueline Le Moigne-Stewart
Several of the mentors participating in the Scholars Program were asked for their opinions and comments about the quality and value of the program. Here is a representative sample of their responses, all direct quotes:
What do you like about working with these students?
“Their enthusiasm for science and for the work they are doing, their native abilities (intelligence, motivation, perseverance), their thirst for experiencing new things, and the fact that this forces me to devote time to research rather than just administration.”
“They are intelligent, highly motivated, and well matched in terms of their interests to their mentors. They can work without detailed supervision on well defined tasks and show creative solutions to challenging problems that are at the advanced undergraduate to graduate student level.”
“I very much like the very good attitude of the National Space Club and Foundation students. They are smart, mature, hard working young people. They also show gratitude for the time I put in to help them. And they have been of considerable help to me. I especially enjoy several of them keeping in touch with me since they've left - another indication of their gratitude, I think.”
“They are enthusiastic and cheerful, and keep me in touch with the younger generation - much younger!”
“The students I've worked with have been eager to assist in whatever assignments or tasks I throw at them. They are conscientious, hard working and eager to learn. I always look forward to meeting my new student for the summer and seeing his or her eyes filled with the excitement at the prospect of working for NASA.”
“It is great to have young people around the office. They bring a fresh perspective on the work and often make me (and my colleagues) take a different view of the material. In the 15 some years that I have been with the program, I have enjoyed meeting new students and interacting with them as they enter college and in some cases actually come back for employment here at NASA.”
How have these young people contributed to your branch's operation and/or mission?
“They give us additional capabilities for doing research we would not be able to do otherwise. I and my people can pursue things we just would not have time for otherwise. Much of their effort leads to reportable or publishable science.”
“Over the past two summers they have made substantial contributions to our robotic space exploration efforts. These tasks started with advanced technology mission concepts and focus now on an operational lunar rover in about 2010.”
“They have contributed in many ways. To mention a few: they have been consultants on our Lab's Education/Outreach Website, have done some computer programming for actual solar wind research that we've been doing, and have participated in the research in such a significant way that I included a few of them in co-authorships in the resulting science papers. The two I have worked with in the last year have both tackled unsolved problems in lunar geology that I have not had time to track down. One did a valuable piece of photogeology that has led me to an entire new theory for the origin of the lunar highland crust.”
“My students have each made major contributions to my work each summer. Some of the projects they've assisted in include: 1) analysis of Mars ozone data 2) programming subroutines in Pascal 3) generation of global city data base for historical eclipse investigations 4) generation of 5,000 years of maps for the World Atlas of Solar Eclipses 5) work on the NASA Eclipse Home Page which is dedicated to public outreach for information on eclipses 6) translation of Word documents into html for dissemination on the web 7) literature searches in Goddard's library”
“Most often we have the interns work on projects that have been low priority. So often at NASA, we have to deal with work that has just come up or becomes a priority. Consequently, work gets put on the proverbial 'back burner.' This doesn't give us the opportunity to take care of the details the way we like to at NASA. We like to be very thorough. Having an intern gives me the opportunity to take care of details that ultimately serve to be very important.”
What do you like best about our program?
“The quality of the students and the detailed placements efforts make for a productive summer for all.”
“It's hard to say what I like best, and there is little I don't like about the program (although I wouldn't mind if it lasted a little longer than 6 weeks each summer). I think the program is very well managed, the quality of the students is very high, and it's a source of invigoration for me. I just enjoy telling family and friends about the accomplishments of these students, partly because they are so out-of-the-ordinary. They are an important positive force for me. (By contrast, we see numerous negative forces every day in a typical newspaper or on the TV news). And some of my research tasks, that probably would not have been accomplished at all without the help of the students, are finally getting done. What a great program! Thank you for the opportunity to participate.”
“Being able to pick out students, rather than having them assigned. Also, all the ones I have worked with have been very highly qualified academically.”
“The National Space Club and Foundation program attracts some of the brightest, most talented and motivated students in the area. It is a delight and a privilege to work with them. As a mentor, the program gives me the opportunity to give something back to the community by inspiring the next generation of scientists. I can share my research experiences with the students and help nurture a passion for the sciences which might influence their ultimate career path. In addition to these altruistic motives, my students also help me accomplish much more that I would otherwise have time for.”
“The students, of course, are the best feature of the program. The organization of the program is also very important. The curriculum for the program allows the students to interact with each other as well as a teacher. This aspect makes it easier for me to support a student and I think it provides a richer experience for both mentor and student.”
About the National Space Club & Foundation
The National Space Club and Foundation is a non-profit organization devoted to fostering excellence in space activity through interaction between industry and government, and through a continuing program of educational support. Awards are offered to recognize significant achievements in space science and enterprise. Scholarships and other education support are a major focus of Club activity.
The National Space Club and Foundation welcomes your questions and comments, including any comments or corrections to information on this website.