August is blasting off in Boise with a week of space-based activities and special events featuring Idaho’s own teacher-in-space (and Idaho Education Association member) Barbara Morgan and other notable “Women in Space.”
Morgan, the McCall teacher who flew aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour in 2007, will be at The Discovery Center of Idaho from 2:15 to 3:15 p.m. Thursday, August 5, to sign photos along with retired NASA astronaut Wendy Lawrence. Regular Discovery Center admission will apply.
On Tuesday, August 3, at 6:30 p.m., pilot and Idaho resident Gene Nora Jessen will give a free talk about her 1961 selection to NASA’s “Mercury 13” program, in which 13 women were selected to go through the same training as the Mercury 7 male astronauts. Although the program was short-lived, she has interesting stories to tell of those early days at NASA and of her work as a test pilot for Beechcraft.
From model rocket launches to stargazing parties, many other events are planned at The Discovery Center next week. Get a full list here.
August 1-7 also marks the first-ever Idaho Science and Aerospace Scholars Summer Academy. The program was organized in part by Morgan, who is now a Distinguished Educator in Residence in the Colleges of Engineering and Education at Boise State.
According to a news release from the Idaho Department of Education, 44 participating high school juniors “will be learning from the best in the industry as they work in teams to construct rovers, robots and rockets, plan missions and understand the material in the context of the real world.” Activities will be based in Boise but students will enjoy a two-day visit to the NASA Ames Research Center in California.