Foundation Programs

BLAST LogoBLAST offers a dynamic three-day residential summer experience on the campus of Virginia Tech (VT) and the University of Virginia (UVA) in the summer for 8th and 9th grade students from Virginia. Through innovative hands-on experiences taught by faculty members and staff, students will explore the fun and excitement of STEM while residing on a college campus. BLAST is geared to students who may have an interest in STEM or an underlying aptitude for STEM academics, but have not yet discovered the excitement of STEM.  The Foundation supports the Virginia Space Grant by administering the program website and application system.

Exploration Systems and Habitation Academic Innovation Challenge Logo - 2017The eXploration Habitat (X-Hab) 2017 Academic Innovation Challenge is a university level challenge designed to engage and retain students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). The competition is intended to link with senior and graduate-level design curricula that emphasize hands-on design, research, development, and manufacture of functional prototypical subsystems that enable habitation-related functionality for space exploration missions. NASA will directly benefit from the challenge by sponsoring the development of innovative habitation-related concepts and technologies from universities, which will result in innovative ideas and solutions that could be applied to exploration habitats.

Nobel MedalThe John Mather Nobel Scholarship Program was established in 2008 by the John and Jane Mather Foundation for Science and the Arts.  The program is open to current NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center based undergraduate and graduate student interns. Each year the program awards travel allowances towards the cost of presenting research papers at professional conferences. Applicants must have demonstrated high academic achievement, have a strong interest in space and Goddard Space Flight Center, be a rising undergraduate junior, senior or graduate student, and be currently holding a Goddard-based research internship.

NASA KSC Higher Education Support Services

The National Space Grant Foundation supports the NASA/Kennedy Space Center Higher Education Office in advertising of Higher Education competitions to students and faculty at colleges and universities within the United States, collection of team proposals, collection of team registration forms, providing NASA with data to select awardees, and the distribution of funds to the appropriate entities.  These programs include but are not limited to student internships, faculty fellowships, senior design projects, and competativelly selected grants. 

Distinguished Service AwardIn partnership with the National Council of Space Grant Directors the Foundation established the National Space Grant Distinguished Service Award to recognize individuals whose life and career have had a long lasting impact in a science, engineering or education field that is related to aeronautic, aviation, or space endeavors. Past award recipients have included former Senator and Secretary of the Treasury Lloyd M. Bentsen, distinguished scientist Dr. James A. Van Allen, entrepreneur Dr. Peter Diamandis and astronaut John Young.

The Foundation also provides various services to support and enhance the Space Grant network. By enabling the network to work together in conducting some of its common tasks the NSGF is providing opportunities for each state based program to take advantage of economies of scale. These services are available to all Space Grant Consortia as well as to other programs that maintain direct partnerships with Space Grant Consortia.

The Space Systems Engineering was developed under contract with NASA/JSC to disseminate curriculum materials to interested faculty. The systems engineering materials were developed by personnel from NASA Headquarters / Exploration Systems Mission Directorate and piloted in the Department of Aerospace Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. The intent is for the curriculum to be transferable to other universities. The full systems engineering course, available here, was designed as a 3 credit hour prerequisite to the senior-level capstone spacecraft/mission design course.

VASTS LogoThe Virginia Aerospace Science and Technology Scholars (VASTS) program is an interactive on-line science, technology, engineering and mathematics learning experience, highlighted by a six-day residential summer academy at NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia. Students selected to participate in the program are immersed in NASA-related research through interaction with scientists, engineers and technologists. The program is a partnership between the Virginia Space Grant Consortium and NASA Langley Research Center with assistance from the Virginia Department of Education. The Foundation administers the on-line course management system and the program web site as a subcontractor to the Virginia Space Grant

CSIIP LogoVirginia Commonwealth STEM Industry Internship Program (CSIIP) offers a one-stop, centralized, online internship application system that provides Virginia's undergraduate STEM majors the ability to search and apply for STEM-related (summer/fall/spring) paid internship opportunities with participating Virginia-based companies that can search our database of prescreened student applications for specific skills, experience, educational background, interests and desired work locations to find the best possible candidates for their internships. Companies select students, make offers, and employ interns directly.  With an increasing demand for skilled STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) workers in Virginia, the development of efficient pathways between undergraduate students pursuing STEM degrees and industry has become an urgent need. With support from the Commonwealth of Virginia, Virginia Space Grant Consortium (VSGC) in partnership with Virginia’s Regional Technology Councils, and in collaboration with Virginia companies, Virginia colleges, and community colleges, has created the Commonwealth STEM Industry Internship Program (CSIIP). CSIIP links undergraduate STEM students to paid internship positions with companies throughout Virginia.  The Foundation provides the on-line application and internship matching system.

 

VESSS LogoThe Virginia Earth System Science Scholars (VESSS) program is an interactive on-line science, technology, engineering and mathematics learning experience for Virginia high school juniors and seniors, highlighted by a seven-day residential summer academy at NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia. Students selected to participate in the program are immersed in NASA-related research through interaction with scientists, engineers and technologists. The program is a partnership between the Virginia Space Grant Consortium and NASA Langley Research Center. Hampton University's Center for Atmospheric Research and Education is providing funding to offer the online course and Thomas Nelson Community College is partnering to provide the dual enrollment college credit. The Virginia Earth System Science Scholars program proposes to build on the success of the award-winning Virginia Aerospace Science and Technology Scholars (VASTS) program, a program which has offered dual enrollment credit, through TNCC, to over 2900 students since 2008.

VSCS LogoThe Virginia Space Coast Scholars (VSCS) is a program for High School Sophomores focusing on the science, engineering, and technology integral to current missions at NASA Wallops Flight Facility and the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport. This dynamic program, designed by the Virginia Space Grant Consortium (VSGC), inspires students who possess technical and/or scientific interests and are motivated to learn about the many different opportunities that NASA offers. The program features two key elements: 1.) a dynamic on-line science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) learning experience featuring five modules; and 2.) a seven-day residential Summer Academy at NASA Wallops Flight Facility on Wallops Island, VA, where scholars will learn first hand from NASA professionals and their partners about the latest, cutting edge technologies and missions.  The Foundation supports the Virginia Space Grant by administering the program website, application system, and the on-line course management system.

William HiscockIn Memory of William Hiscock, the former director of the Montana Space Grant, the National Space Grant Foundation has established the William A Hiscock Space Grant Scholarship Fund.

Bill was known for his animated lectures on cosmology, including his own special course for entering freshman Physics majors, "From Quarks to the Cosmos". Bill also led a very active research group investigating topics in the quantum theory of gravity, space-based gravitational wave detection, relativistic fluid dynamics, and the application of elementary particle physics to relativistic astrophysics and cosmology.

Bill continued to be active as the MSGC Director during the past year of his life, working from home, submitting proposals, and providing advice for the new Head of the Department. Bill was instrumental in the National Space Grant Student Satellite Program. He, along with others in the Space Grant family, led hands-on workshops to teach and train other faculty and students around the country. Through these efforts over 100 new student ballooning programs have been created, engaging thousands of students.