Iridium Communications and its partner companies have launched the Iridium NEXT Mission Team Scholarship program, with an expected $250,000 endowment.
The endowment is a multi-year commitment by Iridium NEXT partner companies to support the development of young aerospace engineers. The company unveiled the program at an Iridium NEXT Mission Team partner event March 14. Thales Alenia Space, SpaceX, Orbital Sciences Corp., Lockheed Martin, Boeing and SEAKR, along with Iridium, have already committed almost half of the anticipated $250,000 endowment, and corporate participation is expected amongst the 30 Iridium NEXT Mission Team members. The scholarship program will be administered by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Foundation, and will begin distributing awards to undergraduate students for the 2012-13 academic year.
The Iridium NEXT Mission Team Program will award scholarships annually to the best and brightest aerospace engineering students in the world, including those already engaged in the development of Iridium NEXT through Iridium or partner internships. Each year, scholarship recipients will form the Iridium NEXT Class of Scholars.
Iridium NEXT, the company’s next generation satellite constellation and commercial space program, is in development and scheduled to begin launching in 2015.
The first Iridium NEXT Class of Scholars, as with the years ahead, will be selected by a designated committee of AIAA Foundation education committee members based on a set of academic and objective criteria. The AIAA Foundation fosters growth and ignites interest in science and technology through STEM K-12 education programs, prepares students for the workforce with scholarships, and hosts student conferences, among other initiatives.
“The Iridium NEXT Mission Team Scholarship program will be one of the most significant educational opportunities anywhere in the aerospace industry,” said AIAA Foundation president Bob Dickman.
For more information: Iridium.com
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