Participants sought for exciting new education fund

Using space to encourage students to understand, study and support science and technology
15 July 2003

The International Space Station Education Fund (ISSEF) has been set up to help ESA in its aim of encouraging students from 15 Member States to understand, study, and support science and technology in the future by using the exciting resources of space.

Space is not only the environment from which many of our future discoveries will come, but it is a resource that can be used to capture the imagination of children of all ages, building an understanding of science and technology.

Support for school and university students

The Fund will support the ISS Education Programme which is developing, producing, and disseminating teaching materials in all 11 ESA languages for primary and secondary school students. Special efforts are being made to target students, both male and female, between 12-15 years old.

Science is a subject traditionally studied mainly by boys - ESA is now developing programme and approaches specifically aimed at girls, to help redress this balance.

The ISS Education Programme will also facilitate the implementation of research experiments, initiated by university students, to be carried out on board the ISS, or on other carriers, particularly in the fields of life and physical sciences and their applications in space (ESA has allocated 1% of the total European accommodation and operational resources on board the ISS to support such experiments).

Launching the Fund

The ISS Education Fund has been formally established in July 2002 as a means to complement the ISS Education Programme. Almost one million Euros of seed funding, and administrative support, has been provided by ESA to the Fund.

On 28 August 2003, significant players from industry and government across Europe will join representatives of international organisations, exceptional individuals, and European astronauts in pledging their support, and opening the Fund to external participation.

How can you participate?

ESA is actively seeking additional contributions – in cash or in-kind – from appropriate organisations, and is offering a range of strategic, tangible, and targeted benefits in return.

If you would like to know more about the Fund and how you can become a participant in the ISS Education Fund, please send an e-mail to Fiona.Wilson@esa.int. Alternatively contact:

Fiona Wilson
Advisor to the ISS Education Programme
Directorate of Human Spaceflight & Microgravity
ESA, ESTEC, Keplerlaan 1
2201 AZ Noordwijk
The Netherlands

Tel: 00 31 71 565 6042
Fax: 00 31 71 565 4499

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