Eighth Grade Science Teacher Attends Space Camp

Laurie Drake, an eighth grade science teacher at the Sussex County Charter School for Technology, won a scholarship to attend “Space Camp” at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama, and has been flying high on cloud nine from the experience and all of the ideas she has for the new school year ever since.

Created in partnership with the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, Honeywell developed the award-winning Honeywell Educators at Space Academy scholarship program to help middle school math and science teachers become more effective educators in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM). This year, 205 teachers from 24 countries took the field trip of a lifetime to the Center in Huntsville, Alabama. It was there that they were given rigorous training focused on science and space exploration, including astronaut-style exercises such as a high-performance jet simulation, scenario-based space mission, land and water survival training, and interactive flight dynamics programs.

“My experience at Space Academy in Huntsville, Alabama was truly amazing. I was a part of a group of 200 math and science teachers from around the world, all people like me with a love for teaching and motivating students,” said Drake. “Every day was packed with information, learning experiences and activities that I plan to bring back to the classroom.”

Drake said she trained on and completed two different simulations of space missions – one on the Shuttle Discovery and another of a futuristic mission to the moon. These missions allowed the teachers to build teamwork and realize the rigors of space flight. They also worked together to build model rockets and created a shuttle tile shield and lunar lander rover to protect their “egg-stronaut.”

This life-changing experience is designed to inspire teachers to encourage students to pursue STEM-related education and careers – something that is important to the Charter School for Technology.

“Because of my experience, I plan to deepen my students’ love for science and all it encompasses by allowing them to explore the many opportunities that STEM education can offer,” said Drake. “My opportunity will turn into their opportunities. Opportunities to inquire, experiment, make conclusions and achieve.”

To attend Honeywell Educators at Space Academy, candidates must complete a thorough application process. Qualified teachers are awarded scholarships, round-trip airfare, tuition, meals and accommodations sponsored by Honeywell, the New Jersey-based company, and its employees.

For more information on the program, please visit: https://educators.honeywell.com/