Here is an announcement of a new magazine oriented towards young people with the goal of encouraging them to purse studies in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). I must note, though, that this issue is totally focused on NASA and is devoid of any acknowledgement of any space activities in the private sector. For young people who want to time travel back to the Space Age of the 1960’s, this is definitely the magazine for them. For those who want to know about the New Space Age in their own future and about the opportunities opening up for them to participate in space development and even to go to space themselves, then this publication, at least if this issue is the standard, won’t give them a single clue. I can only hope future issues will correct this enormous flaw in their approach.
RocketSTEM releases free magazine to inspire children and help educators
Sparking the imaginations of students and inspiring them to pursue knowledge and careers within the disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) is the main focus of a new digital magazine which released its first issue this week.
RocketSTEM is the first project of a private, not-for-profit organization formed to foster STEM education efforts, and to promote space exploration. The magazine, which is FREE to view or download, may be read online at the organization’s website – http://www.rocketstem.org – as well as at issuu.com and Joomag.com.
Among the featured items in the premier issue are:
• One-on-one conversations with Apollo 17 astronauts Gene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt.
• The story behind Apollo 17, the last manned mission to the Moon.
• The twin Voyager spacecraft continue to make discoveries as they near the edge of the solar system.
• An interview with Flight Director Emily Nelson profiling her work within NASA’s Mission Control Center.
• The Curiosity rover embarks on a lifetime of discovery on the surface of Mars.
• Joy abounds for participants during a NASA Social event at JPL.
• A spotlight on the National Naval Aviation Museum.
• And much, much more. Sixty-eight pages of pure content. No advertising
Each issue of RocketSTEM will have a wide variety of content geared to appeal to everyone from little kids to adults, as well as teaching aids for primary and secondary school educators. The publication will mix in space history – past, present and future – along with interviews, career paths, astronomy lessons, aerospace news, museum features, NASA tech spinoffs, puzzles, games, quizzes, lesson plans and other educational resources, and easy-to-follow explanations of the mathematics and physics of all things to do with space travel.
The first issue of RocketSTEM was produced by an all-volunteer staff comprised of journalists, photographers, scientists, teachers and even students. In all, nearly 30 people contributed to the production of the first issue.
“One of my most satisfying moments while I was covering the end of the Space Shuttle program as a journalist, was going to the KSC Visitor Center and giving kids prints of some of my Shuttle photos so they’d have something for the ‘astronaut of the day’ to sign,” said RocketSTEM founder Chase Clark. “It was a most rewarding experience, but I wanted to do much more. I wanted to make a real difference in inspiring the children of America to dream big and become the next generation of rocket scientists and astronauts, as well as hopefully elevate the public’s perception of NASA and space exploration. Lucky for me, I have a lot of friends who feel the same way. They volunteered their time and expertise to help take RocketSTEM from conception all the way through the production and release of the first issue in just three months time.”
RocketSTEM will be releasing new issues as Spring (April) and Summer (June) editions before moving to a monthly production schedule with the August 2013 issue. As well as being free to read online, future plans include releasing each issue as an enhanced multimedia application for tablet computers such as the iPad. A limited number of printed copies of the magazine also are available and may be purchased at www.rocketstem.org/purchase/ .
RocketSTEM Media Foundation, a private, non-for-profit was established in 2012. Based in Pensacola, Florida, the organization has volunteers located throughout the United States, England and several other countries. While focused on development of the magazine for the time being, the foundation has plans to develop comprehensive classroom lesson plans to be used by teachers at all grade levels. It also will be endowing a scholarship fund for college students pursuing aerospace studies, and for younger students wishing to attend Space Camp in Alabama or the National Flight Academy in Florida.