Help support the Florida Student Astronaut Challenge

The action is at the Kennedy Space Center March 7, 8 and 9, as almost 100 Florida high school students launch their final efforts to take the prize.

The Florida Student Astronaut Challenge is a unique opportunity for high school students to engage in a competition focused on aerospace science. In addition to Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, Science is a central element of STEM education, a U.S. Department of Education mandate that is being executed by individual school districts around the country. STEM education will enable future generations of highly skilled workers to lead the U.S. successfully in the competitive global arena, where STEM disciplines are increasingly vital.

JDL Technologies is a Mission Control sponsor of the Challenge, along with NASA and Coaxis International. Sponsorships enable more than a dozen teams of Florida high school students to compete in three final events from March 7 to 9, 2014 at the Kennedy Space Center, helping to cover transportation and lodging for 16 teams during the 3-day event. First, second and third place awards will be given in each event, with the state trophy to be awarded to the top-scoring team from all three events.

Organizers of the Florida Student Astronaut Challenge are still facing their own challenges paying for some of the final expenses. On the wish list are AV equipment rental to broadcast a live feed from the student-built flight simulator to the spectator area ($750), hotel rooms for the judges ($570), ID badge and schedule holders for students and staff ($350), and bottled water, soda and snacks during student team breaks ($300).

In addition, because the Challenge is being held in the Visitors Complex, where admission fees were not anticipated, Challenge organizers are hoping for contributions that will cover or reduce the entrance fees for Student Astronaut Challenge teams. Without help, each of the 16 teams must pay a $147 admission fee for the 3-day Challenge finals.

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