Supernova Inc. has developed a plan to address the client’s goals. The first goal is to create
nationwide support for STEM education and programs. The second goal is to influence students
to pursue aerospace careers.
To achieve the first goal, we propose a month-long campaign renaming April 2012 “Science
Month: Explore Infinite Possibilities,” which is designed to create public awareness and support.
The Coalition needs support and funding from policy makers, parents, and teachers to enhance
STEM performance among students.
We recommend the Coalition make adjustments to its social media approach. Our research
found that the vast majority of students have Facebook accounts. The student presence on Twitter
pales in comparison. To reach students using social media, it is recommended to enhance the
Coalition’s presence on Facebook.
We recommend targeting school administrators in order to emphasize STEM education, and
to help launch “Science Month.” The Coalition should become a member of the STEM Education
Coalition in order to receive the benefits of networking and legislative activity. The Coalition can
receive positive publicity by sending teachers from under-funded schools to STEM education
workshops on a scholarship grant. By enhancing the teacher’s education, the Coalition can
enhance student education. The Coalition should encourage more extracurricular STEM
activities, because research found students spending more time involved with STEM outside of
school are not only more likely to become STEM advocates, but also consider pursuing STEM
In order to achieve the second goal of influencing students to pursue aerospace careers, we
recommend the Coalition sponsor events at Science Olympiad. Our research found that if students
participated in STEM-related competitions, they were more likely to pursue STEM careers. These
students are also more likely to have a more favorable impression of STEM. The Coalition’s
sponsorship money could influence Science Olympiad to run more space-themed events. The
Coalition could then award scholarship money to event winners. Sponsoring an event can be done
for $5,000, and we recommend investing at least $1,000 in scholarship prizes.
Our research found that 94 percent of survey respondents in middle school and high school
said they had thought about careers. To achieve the second goal of influencing students to pursue
aerospace careers, we recommend creating a committee of high school students, called “Junior
Ambassadors.” This committee will work with the Coalition’s Gen Y Board Members to
communicate with secondary education students about career opportunities. Junior Ambassadors
can also be given access to the Coalition’s Facebook page in order to provide a familiar voice to
the target audience. Junior Ambassadors can also be in charge of any videos, blogs and other
social media, under the moderation of the Gen Y Board and Coalition. The Junior Ambassadors
will also be acting as liaisons with Science Olympiad in order to see the Coalition’s sponsorship
is being communicated with secondary education students online and in the competition’s stages.
Research showed that students felt one-on-one interaction with STEM experts created more
interest in the subject. “Aerospace Career Mentors” can provide a link between students and
STEM experts, and would help put a face on professionals in STEM fields. This will help make
STEM careers seem more personable to prospective students interested in STEM careers.
Supernova Inc. tentatively plans to spend a little over budget, with costs totaling $110,761.75.
Client: The Coalition for Space Exploration
“The mission of the Coalition for Space Exploration is to promote the importance of
space exploration to the national agenda via cost-effective, high-yield public outreach
activities that include both traditional and new media to help secure political support and
budget resources for NASA and space exploration,” (“About Us,” spacecoalition.com).
The Coalition is an advocacy group campaigning for increased support and policies
of space exploration. Its members include Aerojet, ATK, Boeing, Harris, Honeywell,
Jacobs, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and United Space Alliance. Its contributors
include AGI, Ball Aerospace & Technologies, Paragon, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, and
Parametric Technology Corporation. Its partner associations include Citizens for Space
Exploration, National Space Society and the Planetary Society.
Members of the Board of Advisors range from middle school teachers, to former
NASA astronauts and flight directors, to an Academy Award-winning director. Members
and partners of the Coalition employ 689,470 people.
The new 2011 NASA budget request unveiled by the White House on Feb. 1, 2010
cancels NASA’s Constellation program, which included a replacement for the retiring
space shuttle program (“Obama’s budget would scrap NASA’s moon mission,”
Private, non-governmental space exploration initiatives such as the Ansari X Prize
and Google Lunar X Prize have had much success. The former generated a low-cost,
reusable manned spacecraft able to enter space frequently over short periods of time. The
latter is an on-going contest to land a robot on the moon. (www.xprize.org)
Private sector space exploration may have benefits, but according to Lockheed
Martin, “there’s too much risk associated with commercial space flight to make that a
viable alternative to a government program.” Commercial space programs are unregulated,
expensive and often wasteful (www.thenewamerican.com). By scrapping the Constellation
program, and following the retirement of the space shuttle, “NASA would rely on private-
financed rockets built by commercial launch companies, to ferry astronauts and cargo to
and from the International Space Station,” (CSMonitor.com) or perhaps rely on foreign
countries for transportation to the International Space Station.
The Coalition believes the United States is losing its edge in the space industry. It
wants a campaign focused on middle school students interested in science, technology,
engineering and math (STEM), in order to motivate these students to graduate college with
a STEM-related degree, and enter jobs in the American space industry.
The National Assessment of Educational Progress has looked at public school
STEM teacher’s backgrounds and found that nearly four out of ten 7-12th grade math
teachers do not have a college major in the subject they teach (www.scienceprogress.org).
About one-third of the fourth-graders and one-fifth of eighth-graders cannot perform basic
mathematical computations (National Center for Education Statistics).
Young American student interest in science and technology has eroded over time.
In 1960, one out of every six (17 percent) U.S. bachelor or graduate degrees was awarded
in engineering, mathematics or the physical sciences. By 2001, that number had dropped to
less than one in 10 (just 8 percent) of all degrees awarded in the U.S (National Science
Foundation. Science and Engineering Indicators, 2004).
The Coalition for Space Exploration operates with a yearly budget of less than $1
While the Obama administration has ended the Constellation program, “The
President’s Budget invests an additional $6 billion in NASA over the next five years – an
overall $100 billion commitment to the agency,” (The Federal Budget, Fiscal Year 2011,
The new federal budget’s investment in new science, innovation and jobs includes:
• “1.2 billion for transformative research in exploration technology that will
involve NASA, private industry, and academia, sparking spin-off
technologies and potentially entire new industries.”
• “150 million to accelerate the development of new satellites for Earth
• “170 million to develop and fly a replacement of the Orbiting Carbon
Observatory, a mission to identify global carbon sources and sinks that
was lost when its launch vehicle failed in 2009.”
• “500 million to contract with industry to provide an astronaut
transportation to the ISS, reducing the sole reliance on foreign crew
transports and catalyzing new businesses and significant new jobs,”
(“Invest in New Science, Innovation, and Jobs,”
In addition, the new federal budget calls for NASA to “Increase annually the
percentage of NASA higher education program student participants employed by NASA,
aerospace contractors, universities, and other educational institutions,” (whitehouse.gov).
The Gallup Organization polled 1,1018 national adults aged 18 and older about
space on June 10-12, 2009. Of those polled, 67 percent said they were “very interested,” or
“somewhat interested,” in space. Attitudes toward NASA were 58 percent “excellent,” or
“good.” The benefits justified the cost of space exploration for 58 percent of those polled,
and 60 percent said they would maintain or increase the federal space budget.
President Obama launched the “Educate to Innovate,” program on Nov. 23, 2009, to
improve the participation and performance of American students in STEM education
Why it is necessary to take action at this time:
Fifteen of the 20 fastest growing occupations projected for 2014 require significant
mathematics or science education to realistically compete for a job (Bureau of Labor and
Statistics, Fastest growing occupations, 2004-14, http://www.bls.gov/emp/emptab21.htm)
STEM education is necessary to create “life sciences and biotech, clean energy, and
green jobs,” (Tim Murray, Lt. Gov. of Massachusetts in Converge Magazine).
Our country’s industrialized economy depends on products and innovation, which
rely heavily on knowledge in math, science and engineering. (www.stemedcaucus.org)
American students need to improve STEM test scores and enter the space industry
to assuage fears that the U.S. has lost its edge in the space industry to nations such as China
– a nation with plans to land on the moon before the U.S. can return – and Russia – a nation
NASA would rely on for transportation to the International Space Station after the space
shuttle is retired.
NASA and private industry needs young, qualified employees entering the
workforce from America’s colleges and universities to meet the competitive challenges of
space exploration in the 21st century, and to achieve the high-priority performances goals
laid out in President Obama’s federal budget.
Science Month Web site $1,500.00
Obama’s proclamation & media kit 5,000.00
Create network of partner associations 165.00
Logo contest 500.00
Create parent page for Science Month 1,000.00
Sending bumper stickers to parents 6,000.00
Planetarium and science museum month 1,600.00
Producing online videos 7,000.00
Science Month promotion at AASA 10,000.00
Space/science education activities packet 6,000.00
Sending teachers to space workshop 7,500.00
3-month magazine ad 15,750.00
Career center website on Coalition’s site 1,000.00
Space Career Mentors 1,500.00
Space Career Mentors posters 2,047.50
Junior Ambassador’s Committee 10,000.00
Science Olympiad liaison 1,000.00
Junior Ambassador’s access to social media 19.25
Produce videos, blogs, podcasts and Facebook status updates 2,000.00
Sponsor Science Olympiad Nationals 6,000.00
Host Science Olympiad Nationals 20,000.00
Press release with Science Olympiad 180.00
Coalition member to speak at Nationals 5,000.00
Budget total $110,761.75
The beginnings of the Coalition for Space Exploration start with the creation of
NASA in 1958 as a government agency in charge of the nation’s civilian space program. In
1983, industry leaders in the space field developed the non-profit, non-partisan U.S. Space
Foundation "to foster, develop and promote, among the citizens of the United States of
America... a greater understanding and awareness ... of the practical and theoretical
utilization of space ... for the benefit of civilization" (spacefoundation.org).
The Space Foundation, among other things, created the Space Technology Hall of
Fame, honoring scientists and engineers responsible for new technologies developed in
space (spacetechhalloffame.org). The Foundation, comprised of nearly 100 corporate
supporters, also runs The Space Certification Program, which allows products using space
technology to use the NASA logo, such as Tempur-Pedic (spaceconnection.org) and
annually publishes The Space Report: The Authoritative Guide to Global Space Activity.
In 2004, the Foundation wanted to support President Bush’s Vision for Space
Exploration. Thus, the Coalition for Space Exploration was created “under the umbrella of
the U.S. Space Foundation” (Covault 57). About half of the Foundation’s corporate
members also became member companies of the Coalition along with many partner
associations. The Coalition has since advocated for continued government funding for
Recent news of President Obama’s proposed budget has had an impact on the space
community. The 2011 budget ends NASA’s Constellation program and outsources low-
Earth orbit travel to commercial firms (Achenbach). The federal budget still increases
NASA’s budget by $6 billion over five years. The budget shift is possibly a result of the
unrealistic nature of the Constellation program succeeding. Former Lockheed executive
Norman Augustine admits that Constellation would have “little chance of ever having a
‘useful role,’” (Achenbach).
The Coalition for Space Exploration has eight major member companies, including
Lockheed, Honeywell, Boeing and Northrop Grumman. Each of the major companies
supports its local community through educational support. The key here is local
community. Aerojet, for example, funds the Sacramento Challenger Learning Center where
kids learn through hands-on activities (Aerojet.com). Aerojet does not assist funding for the
network of 44 other Centers (Challenger.org). The Harris Foundation, as well, reaches out
to students aspiring to pursue STEM-related careers but only offers scholarships and grants
to local schools. Lockheed has a program called “Engineers in the Classroom,” where
practicing engineers assist teachers in supplementing curriculum with hands-on lessons.
However, this program is only for schools located near its facilities (Adams).
The Coalition and Social Media
The Coalition’s Web site conveniently provides access to educational materials and
curricula offered by NASA and member companies on a page titled, “education station.”
There is also a well-defined “Kids Space,” with links to many space-themed online games.
Even so, navigating the Web site to find these resourceful materials is difficult. The Web
site has no ads and yet continues to use Web-banner type links for routing. One helpful
page listing links to space-related contests is only discoverable by finding the Education
Station and clicking two images which both look like advertisements. Several links are
repeats or dead, a heavy emphasis is placed on NASA Web sites and resources, there’s no
information on scholarships or grants offered by member organizations and the site map
does not function (SpaceCoalition.org).
The Coalition has a Twitter account with four tweets per day on average, each of
which provide links to articles of interest to space exploration (Twitter.com). With 857
followers, the profile doesn’t measure up to the most influential Twitter profiles with 1.2
million followers (Twitalyzer.com). The profile in the past five days was uniquely
retweeted only four times. The Coalition doesn’t need to use Twitalyzer to determine its
Twittering has much to improve. At this point, the frequent tweets waste time and energy
for the measurable outcomes.
The Coalition’s Facebook fan page similarly lacks much accomplishment and
influence. There are many posts linking to online, space-related articles, about three per
day. Unfortunately, there has been almost no interaction with fans, only nine fan posts by
three of their 395 fans – a small number compared to NASA’s 35,000 (Facebook.com). The
number one reason for creating a fan page is to engage your audience with your brand and
message (Farr). No one is engaged, and there is little traffic flow.
Finally, the Coalition attempted to develop its own social network using Ning,
launched in 2005. The site has 127 users, and most of whom have not uploaded a profile
picture. With two groups, 12 total blog posts, one listed event and two discussion forums;
one might simply skip this site. However, the Ning page has a generous archive of 65
photos and 81 videos in comparison to its Facebook counterpart. This site has done a better
job attempting to engage its members. However, traffic is still noticeably low. “The reality
of Ning is that it’s lost whatever coolness it had, no one uses it and Ning is going to have a
very hard time getting people’s attention” (Arrington).
Even with the plethora of videos, photos and blogs, emerging analysts and experts
of the recent social media phenomenon recommend businesses and organizations do more.
In the age of Web 2.0 “Placing the video is not enough… you have to do ‘PR’… tagging,
linking and having others point to it and republish it to spark the viral potential of your
content” (Solis). The one thing the Coalition’s Facebook Fan page lacks is participation in
others’ work, especially that of middle and high school students. One of the top 10 things
Solis mentions in his text, Putting the Public Back in Public Relations: How Social Media
is Reinventing the Aging Business of PR, is to “Listen. Learn. Respect.” A successful
Facebook page engages with others and humanizes the process of messaging by
conversing. “Once properly guide [younger generations] have an advantage for joining and
leading more strategic communications online [for your brand]” (Soils).
The client has stressed the importance of reaching middle and high school students
to discover how to make science “cool,” and encourage them to pursue degrees in STEM
The U.S. is experiencing a declining student interest in STEM majors. The well-
known college admission and placement exam company ACT, Inc., has documented this
decline. The ACT includes an interest inventory, or UNIACT, with its college admission
tests. The UNIACT asks questions about a student’s basic interests, and that information is
used to compile a report suggesting career options and majors for the student. Interest
inventory data found that the percentage of ACT-tested students who said they were
interested in majoring in engineering has dropped steadily from 7.6 percent to 4.9 percent
over the past 10 years (ACT, Inc. 1).
Several studies have investigated methods of increasing general science interest.
One survey measured the relationship between the types of resources used in classrooms
and students’ interest in science careers. Resources were analyzed based on their
“sociableness” and “webnicity.” Highly sociable resources provide information through
interactions with people, such as guest speakers and experts. Resources low in sociableness
include books, posters and models. Resources high in webnicity, such as the Internet, have
fluid connections to supporting information. Resources low in webnicity have limited
access to supporting information, are not easily accessible and often require students to
leave the classroom to find additional information. Low webnicity resources can include
books, posters and computers without Internet. More than 600 middle school students rated
their interest in pursuing a science career. Their interest levels were then compared to their
respective classroom’s sociableness and webnicity resource levels. In general, students in
the classrooms with more social and web resources reported higher interest levels of
science career interest (Koszalka).
It should also be noted that guest lecturers and other human resources were
significant predictors of high science career interest for both boys and girls. However,
while increased use of Web resources correlated with increased science interest in girls,
Web resources had little effect on boys (Koszalka).
Large percentages of “tweens” – an age group ranging from 10-14 in this study by
Stuart Larkins – said that they spent at least an hour per day online and nearly half go
online more than three times a day for at least half an hour each time. This age group also
has a high representation on MySpace and other social networking sites, and uses Google
for its search engine. Forty percent of respondents said they use search to further learn
about a product or service after seeing an ad. Through this study it is clear that in order to
gain attention from this population the Internet would be a smart place to go whether it be
on social networking sites, Google advertisements, or other aspects of online media
One study evaluated the long-term impact of a high school summer science
program on students’ interest and perceived abilities in science. The University of
Rochester’s Life Sciences Learning Center has offered a Summer Science Academy (SSA)
for high school students since 1996. The SSA lasts two to four weeks each summer and
offers guided and independent lab projects, bioethics discussions, a biocomputing course,
scientist seminars and field trips. Of the 96 former SSA participants who were surveyed, 80
percent of them said attending the SSA contributed to their interest in a science career.
Students also commented that their experiences at the academy motivated them to excel in
their science classes at school, led to an increased confidence in their scientific abilities,
and had a positive influence on their attitudes toward science (Markowitz).
Another study examines the link between a high school academic competition and
the participants’ career choices and lifelong commitment to science. The National
Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB) is a “quiz bowl” type of competition for high ability
secondary students. Of the 303 previous participants surveyed, 41 percent agreed or
strongly agreed that NOSB participation influenced their career choice. Also, 48 percent
agreed or strongly agreed that ocean or science-related hobbies influenced the selection of
their career or college majors. The strongest influence on career selection was students’
perceptions of their own abilities (Bishop and Walters).
A large proportion (87 percent) of respondents strongly agreed or agreed that
participating in the competition encouraged an overall interest in science. Even participants
who did not pursue a major or career in a STEM area said they are still highly concerned
about environmental and ocean issues. The competition gave them a positive lasting
impression of science in general (Bishop and Walters).
More than 300 high school students who participated in the National Ocean
Sciences Bowl were surveyed about their experiences in the competition. When these
students were asked a question regarding career rewards, they strongly indicated a desire to
make a difference in the community or world. They value service to humankind in general
and social good (Bishop and Walters).
Youth engagement has become a large push in the educational community.
Anderson Wiliams, co-author of The Core Principles for Engaging Young People in
Community Change, encourages educators and non-profits to give youth the opportunity to
lead and serve as a way of learning. This also works well for organizations to us as
resources now. In other words, putting youth on a board of directors, as the Coalition has
done, is a great start but activating those youth to carry out initiatives and represent the
Coalition is the next inevitable step. Williams does not believe ‘youth are the future.’ He
asks the question, “With effective, ethical leadership and a breadth of transferable
leadership skills fundamental to healthy individual development and critical for positive
economic, social and cultural development, why would we wait to cultivate or to engage
our youth and defer their leadership to some nebulous future?” (Williams).
One of the problems the client currently faces is the cancellation of NASA’s
Constellation program. Transportation to and from the International Space Station will be
out of the federal government’s hands. American astronauts will have to rely on private
industry or foreign space programs. Ending Constellation also results in an end to the
space shuttle fleet, without an immediate replacement vehicle.
Another problem are low math and science test scores posted by American students
in comparison to international students, particularly Asians. Results of the Trends in
International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) in 2008 showed that American
students have not improved since the first testing in 1995 (washingtonpost.com).
America’s industrialized economy depends on products and innovation, which rely
heavily on knowledge in math, science and engineering (www.stemedcaucus.org). This is
equally true of the global economy. These test scores raise concerns that American
students are not being educated and prepared to compete in the global economy.
Canceling NASA’s Constellation program also presents an opportunity. As
mentioned in the client research, the new federal budget actually increases NASA’s budget
by $6 billion over five years, and allows private industries to compete for the chance to
create a deep-space transport. This may give NASA a chance to refocus its goals for the
Federal programs are already addressing the problems created by American
students underperforming in STEM disciplines. President Barack Obama spoke to
American students in September at the White House’s Back to School Event, and said,
“We need every single one of you to develop your talents, skills and intellect so you can
help solve our most difficult problems. If you don’t do that – if you quit on school – you’re
not just quitting on yourself, you’re quitting on your country,” (whitehouse.gov). Among
the difficult problems facing America in the 21st century are STEM-related issues – such as
developing clean sources of energy and developing cures for cancer.
The White House held an Astronomy Night on Oct. 7, 2009 for students who had
made astronomical discoveries. In the future, the White House plans to begin hosting an
annual science fair showcasing the student winners of national science, technology, and
When announcing the Educate to Innovate program Nov. 23, 2009, President
Obama said, “We’re going to show young people how cool science can be.” To show its
commitment, the White House made $4.35 billion in federal grants available to schools that
can innovate in STEM disciplines. The three goals of Educate to Innovate are to increase
STEM literacy among all students to improve critical thinking in STEM disciplines,
improve the quality of math and science teaching to keep American students competitive
with international students, and expanding STEM education and career opportunities to
underrepresented groups. The grant program is titled, “Race to the Top,” and it is bolstered
by an additional $260 million commitment from the private sector. Race to the Top funds
will be given to states that can, among other criteria, raise standards of student
achievement, increase teacher effectiveness, and “make it possible for STEM professionals
to bring their experience and enthusiasm into the classroom,” (whitehouse.gov).
John Holdren, science advisor to President Obama, hopes Educate to Innovate and
Race to the Top will help inspire kids in the classroom as well as at home, in part by
showcasing careers that are available in STEM.
The original five public-private partnerships announced include:
• Time Warner Cable’s “Connect a Million Minds” campaign, in
partnership with FIRST Robotics and the Coalition for Space After
School, which will attempt to connect more than one million students with
after-school STEM activities that already exist in their area.
• Discovery Communications’ “Be the Future” campaign, which will air
content over Discovery’s 13 U.S. networks, and will create STEM
Connect – a national education resource for teachers.
• “Sesame Street’s Early STEM Literacy Initiative,” which will commit
20 new episodes to focus on STEM, 13 on science and seven on math.
• “National Lab Day,” a partnership between science and engineering
industries and foundations, which will attempt to upgrade science labs,
support project-based learning, and build communities for STEM teachers.
• National STEM game design national competitions to design STEM-
related video games, one of which will be open only to children
President Obama announced an expansion of the Educate to Innovate campaign on
Jan. 6, 2010. The expansion includes an additional $250 million in five new public-private
investments, a commitment to training more than 10,000 new and more than 100,000
existing teachers, and NASA’s official initiative in cooperation with the campaign
The five new public-private partnerships:
• “Intel’s Science and Math Teachers Initiative,” a ten-year, $200 million
campaign to provide training to more than 100,000 science and math
teachers over the next three years at no cost to the teachers.
• “Expansion of the National Math and Science Initiative’s UTeach
Program” – to prepare more than 4,500 STEM undergraduates to be new
math and science teachers by 2015, and 7,000 new teachers by 2018.
• A campaign led by the presidents of more than 75 public universities
committing to Train 10,000 Math and Science Teachers Annually by
• “The PBS Innovative Educators Challenge,” with an annual
“Innovative Educators Challenge,” highlighting 50 teachers and creating a
platform to spread effective methods and practices.
• “Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowships in Math and Science,” which
plans to provide future math and science teachers with a Master’s degree
in education, and employ them in difficult-to-staff middle and high
schools in Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio (whitehouse.gov).
In cooperation with Educate to Innovate, NASA announced a “Summer of
Innovation” – multi-week learning programs (combining classroom time, camps,
internships, and mentoring) in summer 2010 with middle school students and teachers in
STEM education. “The Summer of Innovation pilot will infuse NASA content and products
into existing, evidence-based summer learning programs at the state level coupled with
design competitions and events open to students and teachers nationwide. The program will
culminate in a national event, in partnership with other departments and agencies,”
In addition to the Summer of Innovation, NASA sponsors many other competitions
and programs, which can be found on its Web site. One such organization is the After
School Astronomy Clubs (ASAC), which is sponsored by NASA, and it allows schools
across the nation to register as an official after-school club. The after-school club is for
grades K-12 and registration is an online procedure.
Planetary Scientist Louis A. Mayo believes that the reason young students haven’t
taken a strong interest in sciences, especially astronomy, isn’t because of a mere lack of
interest, but simply because the science of astronomy gets paid little or no attention to in
school. Space science is buried within Earth Science curriculum and is often taught by
teachers who have had no training in that field.
To change what he thought schools were lacking, Mayo decided to start his own
after-school astronomy club. Community involvement and training are key factors in this
procedure. Contacting local professional and amateur astronomers to talk to students and
the club could inspire them to become further involved in sciences and more specifically,
space sciences. Reaching out to boy and girl scouts is also an effective way to inspire these
students. By getting local businesses to do volunteer work activities and philanthropy, this
could further the after-school system for a science club.
If a particular school is uncertain or is lacking information in terms of starting an
after-school science club, Mayo went as far as writing up a 16-page handbook on how to
run an after-school astronomy club. The guidebook touches on working with the school,
designing the club, teacher involvement, parent involvement, community involvement and
As for the students themselves, Mayo recommends hands-on activities to get the
students engaged. He says, “Children (and adults for that matter) learn best when they are
allowed to participate actively in the process of discovery and evaluation.” Hands-on
activities promote better memory retention within the classroom than traditional teaching
The NASA Ames Research Center has developed an excellent Web site full of
resources and fact sheets of NASA career opportunities in a variety of fields such as
physics, engineering and biology (Day). The information is not organized in a database nor
does it offer a way to identify careers that match users’ interests. It does offer a short
biography and tips from real-life NASA employees.
Finally, an excellent nationwide competition allows organizations and businesses to
sponsor events. Science Olympiad is a K-12 team competition that requires knowledge of
science and engineering ingenuity. Every May, Science Olympiad hosts a national
tournament for its middle and high school divisions with various events. Organizations can
donate $5,000 to sponsor a single event at the National Science Olympiad Tournament.
Other donations are used to provide scholarships for winners.
Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center Survey
This survey was conducted March 3-13, 2010, under the auspices of the Kansas
Cosmosphere and Space Center (KCSC). Students enrolled in JOUR 676 Strategic
Communication Campaigns at the University of Kansas generated questions for the survey
on behalf of its class client, the Coalition for Space Exploration. KCSC e-mailed a link to
an online survey to 1,242 former Space Camp participants. Two hundred seventy-nine e-
mail accounts were invalid and 411 of e-mails were opened. Twenty-eight students and one
professor from JOUR 676 were also invited to participate. The survey response rate was
just over 10 percent.
The questions on the survey related to the students’ interests, mainly highlighting their
inspirations, influences, school subjects and their knowledge and curiosity of space.
Because the results come from KCSC, there is little surprise that 77.2 percent like math and
92.1 percent like science. Also of little surprise, 92.7 percent of the participants showed
interest in space exploration (53.3 percent responded, “Strongly agree,” and 39.4 percent
“Agree.”), and 96 percent of respondents either agreed or strongly agreed with the
statement, “I admire astronauts,” (59.8 percent “Strongly agree,” 36.2 percent “Agree.”).
The middle and high school demographic is thought to value cliques and being popular. We
believed students would be highly influenced by their peers regarding what’s “cool” and
what isn’t. Also, children are often depicted as rebellious and resistant to parental
influence. However, according to the KCSC survey, only 40.9 percent claimed their friends
influenced their interest in school while 81 percent said their parents are a large influence
in their school participation.
Survey participants were asked to rank a list of media using “1” to represent the medium
they use the most, “2” the second-most, etc. Each medium’s total score was averaged. A
low average represents a frequently-used medium. This is counterintuitive, but a low
average score means that medium received more number 1 and 2 rankings. “Computer
(Internet use)” received a 1.47 average response rate, and television ranked a distant second
with an average of 3.02. The preferred medium of these survey participants is by far
“Computer with Internet use.”
Of the 95 percent of students with parents in a STEM career, 78 percent said they like math
and 98.7 percent said they like science. These results seem to indicate that children with
parents who work in a STEM field are more likely to enjoy math and science. That could
be extrapolated even further to hypothesize that these same children are more likely to
pursue STEM careers themselves. Though these results seem promising for a potential
boost in STEM careers, they also only reflect the thoughts and opinions of students who
visited the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center.
On March 4, 2010, two members of Supernova Inc. traveled to Leawood Middle School in
Leawood, Kan., to conduct a focus group. It was organized with the full cooperation of
Marcia Eaton, a paraprofessional at the school, who co-moderated the focus group. The
group consisted of eight students from 6th to 8th grade who were Science Olympiad
participants. Science Olympiad is an annual K-12 standards-based science competition,
comprised of school-based teams of up to 15 students competing in more than 240 regional
and state tournaments, culminating in the Science Olympiad National Tournament. Among
other things, Supernova Inc. wanted to find out what makes science, math or technology
interesting to middle school students, what they think about NASA and space, and what
their classes are like.
The students said they think science is “awesome,” because it makes them feel smart and
helps them to discover answers to experiments and questions. They said they feel that math
is a subject that gives you right or wrong answers. When one student said, “Math applies to
everything you do,” another said, “So does science!” These students are possibly more
likely to see the big picture about math and science, because several of them have parents
and older siblings who inspired and pushed them to be successful in STEM disciplines.
Several of the students have parents who work in STEM fields.
The students all agreed they like computers. All but one has a mobile phone. One student
observed that they and their peers are “really dependent on technology—maybe over
When asked if they have considered college or careers, some said they hadn’t yet because
they are only in middle school. One student said they are considering architectural
engineering. Another student said it’s their dream to be a forensic scientist like on the TV
show “CSI.” One student is thinking about being a veterinarian, and another is considering
designing video games.
When asked about Science Olympiad, the students were all very enthusiastic about the
competition. The students were also excited about being able to learn with their friends,
and having the opportunity to hang out and travel with their friends to these competitions.
When asked about space exploration and NASA, the students showed knowledge of recent
developments in the federal budget. One didn’t understand why Obama would cut the
shuttle program, but another one saw it as an unnecessary expense at this point with the
economy. There was a general consensus that space exploration is important, to discover
and learn things from outside Earth, but that maybe it could take a backseat for now with
some of the problems here. The student who had earlier considered a profession in video
game designing admitted an interest in becoming an astronaut.
The discussion switched gears into lively dialogue about the students’ science classes. The
group complained about science classes being too boring because of repetitive review, the
slow pace, teachers not going in-depth with the subject–possibly because of a lack of
knowledge, and a certain teacher being a hard grader which makes other students not enjoy
the subject. Some of the students said they learned more by reading the book themselves,
going in-depth and at their own advanced pace. It seems the students dislike busy work and
waiting for the entire class to be ready before they move on. They agreed that “any hands-
on lab is awesome,” except when the teacher doesn’t trust students to do the experiment.
The focus group concluded after the students were asked to use only one word each to
describe science, math and technology. Their responses for science included “pwns,” “fun,”
“mysterious,” “interesting,” “question-answering,” and “experimental” (pwn: Internet slang
derived from the verb, “own,” possibly developed as a common typo, meaning victory or
triumph over an opponent. Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pwn). Their math
responses included “fun,” “straightforward,” “interconnected,” “interesting,” “awesome,”
and “hardcore.” Responses for technology included “innovative,” “complicated,”
“dependable,” “newfangled,” “evergrowing,” “sleek,” and “helpful.” Supernova Inc. took
these one-word responses from the focus group to help form a question on a survey
developed for middle and high school students.
Supernova Inc. Survey
Group members of Supernova Inc. developed and distributed a survey to middle school
students attending Pleasant Ridge Middle School in Overland Park, Kan., South Junior
High in Lawrence, Kan., and high school students attending Blue Springs High School in
Blue Springs, Mo. This survey was similar to the KCSC survey. We received responses
from 53 middle school students and 83 high school students. Among other things,
information sought by the survey included reasons that a class or subject is interesting, if
students had thought about a career, feelings about math or science competitions, and
The first section of the survey asked students to respond to statements by selecting their
level of agreement. Possible responses ranged from “strongly disagree,” which earned a
score of “1,” to “strongly agree,” which scored a “5.” Each question’s scores were
averaged. Higher average indicated students often agreed or strongly agreed with the
statement, while lower average indicated students mostly disagreed. Results found that 113
out of 136 (83 percent) participants agreed or strongly agreed with the statement, “If my
teacher is excited or engaged, I am more interested in the class or subject,” and it scored an
average of 4.23 out of a possible five.
The second section asked participants to select what makes a class or subject interesting
from a given list of options. The most often selected choices were hands-on experiments
(115 of 136, 85 percent), in-class discussions (97 of 136, 71 percent), videos (95 of 136, 70
percent), the use of technology in class (94 of 136, 69 percent) and field trips (91 of 136, 67
percent). Perhaps the most surprising result is the high percentage “in-class discussions”
received. This may be related to the fact that students said they respond well to an exciting
and engaging teacher.
The survey found that 94 percent (128 of 136) of participants said they had thought about a
career already, as highlighted in figure 1. When discussing career options, 88 percent (120
people) had spoken to parents or guardians, 85 percent (115 people) had spoken to friends,
46 percent (62 people) had spoken to teachers, and only 38 percent (52 people) had talked
with guidance counselors about careers. Figure 2 presents a visual interpretation of these
results. It appears students are reaching out to parents and friends more often than guidance
counselors or teachers for career advice.
Three survey questions measured who most influences students’ interests in school.
Students were asked to indicate their level of agreement with the statement, “My parents
have influenced my interest in school.” Similar questions were asked regarding teachers
and friends. Each question’s “agree” and “strongly agree” responses were combined to
determine the percentage of students who agreed with the statement. From the three groups
of people we asked about, parents influence students the most (76 percent agreed or
strongly agreed), teachers influence students second most (66 percent agreed or strongly
agreed) and friends influence students the least (52 percent agreed or strongly agreed).
Figure 3 illustrates these results. Teachers may be underutilized resources for steering
students toward STEM careers because of their powerful influence on students’ interests in
Participants were also asked, “When you think of science, what three words come to
mind?” From a list of ten words (Cool, Straightforward, Uninteresting, Exciting, Boring,
Interesting, Nerdy, Awesome, Mysterious, Difficult) the most selected response was
“Interesting,” (94 of 136, 69 percent). Only 21 of 136 (15 percent) selected
“Uninteresting.” Participants were also asked to choose three words to describe math, and
“Straightforward,” was the most selected response (72 of 136, 53 percent). The gap
between “Interesting,” and “Uninteresting,” was also close, with 53 (39 percent) and 39
responses (29 percent), respectively.
Results concerning social media use found that 76 percent (103 of 136) of participants
belong to or use Facebook, and 74 percent (100 people) belong to or use YouTube. Only 10
percent (14 of 136) of participants belong to or use Twitter. These results are presented in
Supernova Inc. survey data from high school and middle school students
Figure 1 “Have you thought about a career?”
No - 5% Unanswered-‐
Unanswered - 1% Yes - 94%
Figure 2 “I have discussed career options with…”
Parents/ Friends Teachers Guidance
Supernova Inc. survey data from high school and middle school students (continued)
Figure 3 “These people influence my interest in school…”
Percent of students who agreed and
Parents Teachers Friends
“I belong to/use these social media sites:”
who use this form of social media
Number of students (out of 136)
Facebook YouTube Myspace Other Twitter Blogs
Spahr Library Survey
This survey was conducted at 1:00 p.m. on March 10 at the Spahr Engineering Library on
the University of Kansas campus. Free pizza was available for those who participated in the
survey. Thirty-six students responded, 21 males and 15 females, and the average age was
Thirteen of the survey’s 29 questions asked participants to respond to statement by
selecting their level of agreement ranging from “strongly disagree” to “strongly agree.”
Similar to the previous two surveys, “1” denoted a “Strongly disagree” answer, and “5”
denoted “Strongly agree.”
There were several interesting results. Responses to the statement “In high school, I believe
my friends influenced my interest in school,” averaged 2.6, indicating general
disagreement. The people surveyed did not feel that friends had much influence on their
interest in school. However, responses to the statement “My teachers have influenced my
interest in school,” averaged 4.08, indicating general agreement. These opinions are
strengthened by responses to two related statements. The first such statement, “In high
school, I believe my friends were interested in math, science or space exploration,” results
in a 2.94 average, leaning more toward the ‘disagree’ side of ‘no opinion.’ Responses to
the second related statement, “If my teacher is excited and engaged, I am more interested in
the class or subject,” resulted in a 4.72 average, on the stronger side of ‘Agree.’
Only 42 percent of respondents cited a guidance counselor as someone they spoke to about
career options, while 92 percent spoke to parents and approximately 70 percent spoke to
friends or teachers. In retrospect, whether accurate or not, most college students do not
recall their guidance counselor helping them decide on a career. Perhaps little, if any, effort
should be spent reaching out to this intervening public in our plan, because they hardly
affect the target audience.
The survey asked participants to “Describe your favorite high school teacher and why
he/she is your favorite.” The responses include reasons such as the teacher’s engagement
with the class and material, the teacher’s enthusiasm and excitement, caring for students’
ability to learn, conducting hands-on demonstrations and experiments, being a personable
teacher with a sense of humor, and having a broad knowledge of curriculum. An
overwhelming number, 78 percent, agreed hands-on experiments made a class more
The survey also asked its participants to “Describe your least favorite high school teacher
and why he/she is your least favorite.” Responses include boring teachers, not going in-
depth with material, not having interest in the students, not promoting discussions, being
unknowledgeable, being unnecessarily strict, not being relatable, and being unmotivated.
In response to the question, “Have your career interests changed since high school?” 20
respondents said yes, and 16 said no. When the participants were polled to consider when
they learned they had an interest in the STEM disciplines, nine said elementary school, 13
said middle school, 10 said high school, and two said college. While the client's assumption
that STEM-based careers are chosen during middle school matched our results, nearly 60
percent stated they learned they had an interest in the STEM fields during high school or
elementary school. This suggests that while most students realized they enjoy STEM
disciplines specifically in middle school, a majority of students would be left out if we only
focused on middle school.
Participants responded to three statements about space and one about the current space
exploration budget. Responses to the statement, “Space exploration is important,” resulted
in a 3.69 average, or mostly leaning toward “no opinion.” The statement, “I admire
astronauts,” returned a 3.77 average, again hovering around “no opinion.” Responses to, “I
follow new information about NASA and space exploration,” resulted in 3.14, the closest
average to “no opinion,” returned regarding the space statements. Participants were asked,
“How much government funding should be spent on further space exploration in
comparison to the current budget?” For spreadsheet scores on this rating, “1” means
“Significantly more,” “2” means “More,” “3” is “Same,” “4” is “Less,” and “5” is
“Significantly less.” There is also a “Don’t know,” option. Three responded, “Don’t
know,” but the average score is 3.09. This data shows that this group of participants feels
fairly apathetic about NASA and space travel, but favorably leaning slightly toward finding
it important. This is important because it shows there is still hope. For the most part, they
don’t have strong opinions about space exploration, which would make it easier for us to
help them form one.
Summary of Key Findings
Supernova Inc. conducted primary and secondary research to learn more about middle
and high school students. Our primary research regarding who influenced their interest in
school was surprising. We found mostly teachers, then parents and finally friends influence
students. Perhaps teachers should be more involved in discussing career opportunities with
interested students because of their powerful influence. Students also strongly indicated that
if their teachers are excited and engaged, they themselves are more likely to be interested in
the class or subject. Teachers should be aware that the manner in which the material is
presented affects the students’ interest level. If the teachers are excited, then the students will
When students were asked to select activities that made a class or subject interesting
the overwhelming favorite were hands-on experiments. Students who participate in science-
based competitions are more likely to pursue STEM careers. Students who participate in
those competitions and didn’t pursue STEM careers are still advocates for STEM progress.
Four other top choices were in-class discussions, videos, technology and field trips.
Secondary research found that, in general, students in classrooms with more guest
speakers and Web resources reported higher science interest levels. Primary research found
that among students, the most frequently used medium is a computer with Internet access.
Because students already enjoy using the Internet, utilizing Web resources in the classroom
can potentially increase academic interest, and therefore achievement. More than three out of
four students surveyed use Facebook, about the same number use YouTube, but only one out
of 10 use Twitter. The low Twitter usage by students means that there could be less emphasis
on this form of social media.
The White House has committed more than $4.5 billion to improve STEM
performance and innovation in schools. The three goals of Educate to Innovate are to
improve critical thinking in STEM disciplines, improve the quality of math and science
teaching, and expanding STEM career opportunities. This provides a platform for the
Coalition to take advantage of funding and partnership opportunities.
Secondary Education (Middle School and High School) Students: These students
are entering an age when interests of study begin to shape. This campaign is
attempting to influence middle school students to be interested in STEM disciplines,
and eventually pursue space-related careers. This would inform students of
potentially high-paying and rewarding career opportunities students might not be
aware of. The key message in targeting this public is to encourage the importance of
STEM education as well as stimulate interest in STEM education.
College Students: This group is preparing to graduate and enter the workforce.
There are concerns that industries other than aerospace will recruit highly qualified
graduates, resulting in a dwindling pool of qualified graduates to enter the aerospace
industry. Ultimately, this public’s stake is similar to the secondary education
students’ public, in that they are seeking high-paying and rewarding careers. The key
message in targeting this public is to convince college-aged students to pursue STEM
related careers within the NASA field as opposed to the “hip” corporations, i.e.,
Teachers: Our research found that teachers are capable of greatly influencing their
students’ interest level in the subject they teach. Teachers should encourage students
to participate and be enthusiastic about STEM, and they should provide guidance to
highly interested students. Students are likely to enjoy a class more if the teacher is
engaged and helpful. The key message in targeting this public is to convince teachers
to encourage interest in STEM education and be enthusiastic about teaching students
about aerospace education.
Parents: This public will encourage their kids to have an early interest in STEM
disciplines, therefore influencing those students to consider pursuing a STEM career.
Parents want their children to be successful and enjoy what they do. The key message
in targeting parents is to allow parents to push their children into STEM education
and STEM related careers.
College Career Center Advisors: Advisors need to know what the aerospace
industry can provide to college students. They need to be able to connect students
with professionals in the industry, and provide career opportunities. The key message
in targeting college career center advisors is to guide students towards professional
careers and possible career opportunities hopefully within the STEM related fields.
Media: An intervening public used to build public support and interest in a unique
project involving high school students in leadership roles. The news media is always
looking for new stories, and will be kept informed about new events pertaining to
space exploration. Media would provide a positive outlook to the public about
students getting involved in leadership roles and providing news stories about the
efforts students are making to encourage others about STEM education and
School Administrators: This public will be targeted to raise support and awareness
for Science Month: Explore Infinite Possibilities as well as possibly allocate funds
and influence curricula. These school administrators will be seeking re-election, and
supporting education can lead to higher approval ratings. School administrators will
encourage STEM education through curricula provided by the coalition as well as
dedicate one month to science and space related topics.
Strategic Partnerships with Industry Leaders: This public is intended to help with
spreading the word of the campaign, provide financial support, and expertise.
Ambassadors and the industries they represent will benefit from the public exposure
involved with appearances and sponsorships.
Science and Technology Centers: This public is targeted for the purpose of giving
schools reduced rates for field trips and tours during Planetarium and Science
Museum Month. This public will benefit from increased visitation during this month,
and any further publicity as a result of the campaign.
Goal 1- To create nationwide support for STEM education and programs
Objective 1- Declare April 2012 National Science Month
Tactic 1- Design a Web site for this month of awareness
Description: An easy to access Web site complete with explanation of
STEM, its importance, participating partners, list of Month’s events and
information on curriculum
Targeted audience: Media, school administrators, teachers, parents, and
Timetable: Launch Site Summer 2010
Tactic 2- Persuade President Obama to proclaim April 2012 Space Month
Description: Announce launch of Web site through dispersion of
media kits, motivation for month of awareness and the planned events.
Also, announce Junior Ambassador Committee (see Goal 2, Objective 2)
members and their integral involvement in the year of awareness. Promote
with intervening audiences such as state education boards, National
Education Administration (NEA) and space blogs.
Targeted audience: Media, education administrators
Timetable: Spring 2011
Tactic 3- Create network of partner associations
Description: Utilize not only Coalition members but also expand network
to many similar advocacy groups through individual executive meetings
and by contacting them through form letters. Potential partner associations
could include the White House, Department of Education, NASA, NEA,
National Lab Day, Universities, Google and other STEM-related
Targeted audience: Industry leaders, school administrators
Timetable: December 2010- Send letters to associations
Cost: 250 letters at $0.16 per letter at Kinko’s = $40
250 letters with $0.44 per stamp = $110
250 envelopes at Office Depot = $15
Tactic 4- Logo Contest
Description: Launch contest on Facebook to find suitable logo for
Targeted audience: Students
Timetable: Announce contest- Feb. 2011
Promote contest- Aug.- Sept. 2011
Deadline for submission Oct. 31, 2011
Cost: $500 total prize money
Objective 2- Increase awareness of the Science Month: Explore Infinite Possibilities by
Tactic 1- Create page for parents on the Science Month
Description: The Parents page will include information about the Month,
how to join the parents group, etc.
Targeted audience: Parents
Timetable: Summer 2010
Cost: $1,000 according to dotlaunch.com
Tactic 2- Send members of the parent group a bumper sticker
Description: Bumper sticker promoting science.
Targeted audience: Parents
Timetable: Winter 2011
Cost: $0.60 per bumper sticker X 10,000 stickers = $6,000
Objective 3- Increase extracurricular STEM activities
Tactic 1- Create “how-to” guide for running an after-school science club.
Description: An easy to follow guide with templates and instructions on
how to create and run a science club, including a template letter to
teachers, promotional posters, club projects, and activities. An example of
an after school group would be astronomy club.
Targeted audiences: Middle and high school students and teachers
Timetable: Mail handouts -Summer 2010
Cost: E-mail and available for online download (Free)
Tactic 2- Declare April 2012 “Planetarium and Science Museum Month”
Description: Collaborate with Association of Science-Technology
Centers to create discounts for class trips and tours during Space
Month. Inform administrators at conference and students through
Facebook. Use brochure to promote these activities.
Targeted audiences: Students, administrators, museums and teachers
Timetable: Brochures mailed March/April 2012
Cost: $0.16 per brochure X 10,000 = $1,600
Objective 4- Enhance Social Media sites
Tactic 1- Make Facebook presence more interactive and engaging
Description: Match Facebook updates with comments on students’
Targeted audiences: Middle and high school students
Timetable: Immediately; Again in 2011 by Junior Ambassadors
Tactic 2- Reprioritize Social Media presence
Description: Focus discussion of STEM on Facebook and less on
Targeted audiences: Middle school students
Tactic 3- Create Facebook events
Description: Use Facebook to promote contests and competitions.
See Logo Contest, Museum Day, Science Olympiad and after-school
Targeted audiences: Middle school students
Timetable: Winter 2011 for AASA Conference
Spring 2011 Science Olympiad Event
Logo Contest August 2011
April 2012- Space Month
May 2012- Science Olympiad
Tactic 4- Produce monthly online videos
Description: Junior Ambassador Committee will write and produce 3-5
minute videos monthly, upload them to YouTube and post them on
Facebook. Related to Science Month and upcoming events.
Targeted audience: Middle school students
Timetable: Produced monthly during 2011-2012
Objective 5- Establish the Space Coalition as an advocate for STEM education
Tactic 1- Join STEM Education Coalition
Description: Join more than 200 organizations in supporting legislation
that supports STEM educations
Targeted audiences: School administrators
Tactic 2- Promote Science Month at the American Association of School
Administrators National Conference on Education
Description: Promote John Kao, author of Innovation Nation, as major
spokesman at conference encouraging School Administrators to support
increased space curriculum during 2011-2012 school year.
Targeted audiences: School administrators
Timetable: Feb. 2011
Tactic 3- Provide a packet of possible space science education
activities to AASA Conference
Description: easy to follow activity instructions provided by
Targeted audiences: Middle school and high school students
Timetable: Feb. 2011
Cost: 10,000 flyers at $0.06 per = $6,000
Tactic 4- Send teachers to space/science education workshops on teaching middle
school and high school students at UC Berkeley Space Science Laboratory
Description: An application process to send middle school and high school
teachers to NASA sponsored workshop on teaching space sciences
specially designed at UC Berkley.
Targeted audiences: Middle school and high school teachers
Timetable: Summer 2011
Cost: $1,500 for travel and hotel accommodations per teacher
Send five teachers = $7,500
Tactic 5 – Run a three-month magazine ad promoting space/science education
workshop in teacher and parent magazines
Description: Magazine poster ad will run from January-March 2011, in
advance of the Summer 2011 workshop, providing information on how to
send a teacher to the workshop.
Targeted audiences: Middle and high school teachers
Timetable: January-March 2011
Cost: $5,250 per month for three months = $15,750
Goal 2: To influence students to pursue space-related careers
Objective 1 – To make aerospace-related career information easily accessible, personal
Tactic 1 – Create a career center for students on Coalition Web site
Description: Create a searchable database based on students’ interests and
hobbies. Results yield fact sheets on STEM career opportunities, pictures,
contact information for “Space Career Mentors,” career videos, and
information for parents.
Targeted audiences: Middle school and high school students, and parents
Timetable: Summer 2010
Cost: $1,000 (according to estimates at dotlaunch.com)
Tactic 2 – Create “Aerospace Career Mentors”
Description: Professionals of a variety of fields donate their time to
connect with interested students. Mentors create short videos of a typical
work day and STEM studies practical application. Mentors speak directly
to students via Facebook pages and organized Webinars with classrooms.
Distribute to college career centers and Facebook.
Targeted Audiences: Middle school, high school and college students,
teachers, college career center advisors
Timetable: Summer 2010
Cost: $1,500 for Web site, according to dotlaunch.com
Tactic 3 – Create Aeropace Career Mentors posters
Description: Create posters featuring the Space Career Mentors. Each
poster will feature one Mentor’s picture, details about their job duties,
pictures of them at work, their education and career paths, their hobbies
and interests and what school “subjects” they use at work. Headline
example: “My name is Bob Smith and I use physics every day.” Allow
teachers to request posters for their classrooms.
Targeted Audiences: Middle and high school students, teachers
Timetable: Distribute March 2011 at National Science Teacher
Association Conference, also as downloadable pdf
Cost: $2,047.50 (10,000 posters, 18” x 24”, 4 color, according to
Objective 2 – To establish peer-group outreach to middle and high school students
Tactic 1 -- Establish the Junior Ambassadors Committee, a committee of high
school students who are interested and invested in space exploration
Description: 12-15 High school students currently interested in STEM
fields communicating with students and schools about opportunities and
events. Junior Ambassadors would also build retention into GEN
Y Board Members program, and could work closely together on various
Targeted audiences: Students, teachers, industry leaders, schools, parents,
Timetable: Send out invitations/applications to prospective students
handpicked by the Coalition by July 1, 2010
Select committee members by Aug. 1, 2010
Attend AASA conference Feb. 2011
Tactic 2 –Liaison with Science Olympiad in creation of competition criteria
Description: Develop a unique, space-themed concept for the nationwide
competition to be held 2012, as well as a possible single event in 2011.
Targeted audiences: Industry leaders, students, teachers
Timetable: December 2010- Contact Science Olympiad
Tactic 3 – Allow the Junior Ambassadors access to the Coalition’s Facebook
Description: Allow the Coalition’s current employees in charge of the
Facebook account to moderate the Junior Ambassadors use of the account
in order to give the Youth Committee a voice in communicating with
Targeted audiences: Student audience the Coalition is currently not
reaching with its social media efforts.
Timetable: Immediately following creation of the Junior Ambassadors and
a social media-training seminar.
Cost: Purchase of The Social Media Bible, $19.25 new at Barnes & Noble.
Tactic 4 – Produce videos, blogs, podcasts and Facebook status updates.
Description: Content will include science experiments, entertaining
NASA updates, critique of curriculum, new events.
(See G.1 Objective 4, Tactic 3)
Targeted audiences: Facebook followers, students, teachers, parents.
Timetable: Immediately; continued regularly until May 2012
Cost: $2,000 budget to produce videos and podcasts.
Objective 3- Become “partner” of Science Olympiad
Tactic 1- Sponsor event at Science Olympiad Nationals 2011
Description: Start by sponsoring a single event during 2011 competition
and provide scholarship for first place team.
Targeted audience: Industry leaders, students, teachers
Timetable: May 2011 – Sponsor Olympiad Event
Tactic 2- Host Science Olympiad Nationals 2012
Description: Match funds from Coalition members in order to sponsor
entire competition for 2012 with heavy emphasis on STEM application to
Targeted audience: Industry leaders, students, teachers
Timetable: May 2012
Tactic 3- Joint Press Release with Science Olympiad
Description: Emphasize Junior Ambassador leadership and growth of
major national competition with the Coalition industry leaders
Target audience: Industry leaders, school administrators, general public,
Timetable: Spring 2011
Cost: $60/hour production for three hours = $180
Tactic 4- Coalition Member Speaker
Description: Have a key member of coalition speak at Nationals to appeal
to industry leaders, parents and students for continued growth of STEM
education even past Science Month
Target audience: Industry leaders, media, teachers, parents, students,
Timetable: May 2012
Cost: $1,500 for travel and hotel accommodations, $3,500 (average)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT:
April 11, 2011 Julie Arnold
White House Declares April 2012, “Science Month: Explore Infinite
HOUSTON – President Obama has signed a proclamation declaring April
2012, “Science Month: Re-launching Student Achievement.” The Coalition for
Space Exploration has partnered with many organizations, including the
Department of Education and NASA, to bring this month of Science,
Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education into middle and high
school classrooms in April 2012.
The Coalition has launched a Web site for Science Month to serve as a
central hub for administrators, teachers, parents and students to learn more
about Science Month and its activities and events. For more information, please
go to http://www.sciencemonth.com. The Coalition has also made a Facebook
fan page available to promote Science Month and establish conversations with
students and parents online.
Coalition for Space Exploration announces additional events and services in
support of Science Month
• Science Month Logo Contest
The Coalition is asking students to design a logo for Science Month which
will be used for the Web site, Facebook page, in-class Science Month
materials and activities, and official stationary. The contest winner will
receive a $500 cash prize. Details of the contest can be found online at
sciencemonth.com or on the Facebook fan page, or contact Julie Arnold,
• Science Olympiad Sponsorship
The Coalition for Space Exploration will sponsor a space-themed event at
Science Olympiad Nationals 2011. The Coalition will reward a $1,000
scholarship to the first place individual or team.
• Junior Ambassadors Committee
The Junior Ambassadors Committee is made up of 20 high school students
(ten 11 t h graders, ten 12 t h graders) interested in STEM fields and
communicating with students and schools about Science Month and other
opportunities. The Junior Ambassadors attended the American
Association of School Administrators national conference in February to
raise support for Science Month. They will be working closely with
promoting Science Olympiad, and will be communicating with student
peers about Science Month online in social media. Details of how to
become a Junior Ambassador, or to communicate with the committee, can
be found online at http://www.spacecoalition.com/juniorambassadors, or
on the Coalition’s Facebook page. Contact Julie Arnold, 281-335-0200,
• Aerospace Career Mentors
The Coalition has made a career center on its Web site with a searchable
database of careers based on students’ interests and hobbies. Aerospace
Career Mentors are professionals from a variety of fields speaking
directly to students on the Web site, Facebook and organized classroom
Webinars. Visit the Aerospace Career Mentors on
http://www.spacecoalition.com/careerportal, or contact Julie Arnold, 281-