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GC Projects to Go Above and Beyond

The Garden City Public Schools are excited to announce that Garden City Middle School is participating in the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education’s Student Spaceflight Experiments Program this school year, and as a result, a student’s project will be launched into space! The program is being offered to the entire seventh grade and students will work with their science teachers to design microgravity experiments from start to finish.


Students learned of the opportunity during surprise assemblies held on Sept. 3, during which Science Curriculum Coordinator Dr. Elena Cascio and Garden City High School student volunteers Erin O'Connor and Grayson Gardi made the announcement. They shared details that three proposals will be sent to Washington, DC, and a National Review Board meeting at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum will select one team experiment to board a SpaceX vehicle and be transported 250 miles above Earth's surface to the International Space Station. There, astronauts will conduct the experiment while students simultaneously carry out control experiments in their classrooms. Upon its return to Earth, the project will be returned to the students for further studies that they can report at the SSEP National Conference.


Project design and development will commence in the upcoming weeks. These real-life, interdisciplinary projects will incorporate many subject areas and skills as students communicate their ideas, write formal proposals, explore designs and apply technological, mathematical and scientific aspects.


“Participating in the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP) is an incredible opportunity for our students and teachers,” Dr. Cascio said. “Students will apply what they learn in science classrooms and propose a real-world experiment to be performed at the International Space Station. We hope that this unforgettable experience of conducting an authentic space research project will inspire our students to dream big, explore their interests and follow their passions!”


The Student Space Flight Experiments Program [or just “SSEP”] is a program of the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education (NCESSE) in the U.S. and the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education Internationally. It is enabled through a strategic partnership with Nanoracks, LLC, which is working with NASA under a Space Act Agreement as part of the utilization of the International Space Station as a National Laboratory.


 “There is enthusiasm among our seventh grade students and their teachers for having one of our team experiments fly to the International Space Station, where an astronaut will follow the experimental design protocol,” Dr. Sinha said. “Thank you to Dr. Cascio, Science Coordinator, who is leading this exciting work in our middle school.”


Students Presenting"Garden city is going to space" presentationStudents watching the space presentaionTeacher Speaking to students in auditoriumAuditorium presentationStudents in auditorium