COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Oct. 13, 2023 — Space Foundation, a nonprofit organization founded in 1983, offering information, education and collaboration for the global space ecosystem, today announced that its Center for Innovation and Education is partnering with the Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research to launch Space Across the Curriculum professional teacher training courses. With the support of the U.S. Mission to the UAE, the partnership aims to bolster workforce development and empower teachers and students across the region through STEM education to pursue a career in the global space ecosystem.
Taking place through Oct. 30, 2023, the six-part course is designed to provide a select group of 75 middle school STEM educators with innovative curriculum, tools to integrate engaging and educational technology, and instructions on implementing project-based learning strategies in their classrooms. These concepts are designed to help students better identify connections between their studies and the real world. In addition, educators will be invited to participate in two support sessions following each of the six courses. Attendees will also receive a Space Foundation certification upon completion of each workshop.
“We are honored to partner with the Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research to bring the excitement and wonder of space and STEM learning to students and teachers in the UAE,” said Shelli Brunswick, chief operating officer of Space Foundation. “Our Center for Innovation and Education is dedicated to providing resources and support for STEM education through the exciting lens of space, and we believe that this first of hopefully many collaborations will inspire the next generation of space explorers and innovators in the United Arab Emirates region.”
The UAE Ministry of Education is committed to providing high-quality education for all students in the UAE, with a particular focus on STEM education and workforce development. In 2021, Space Foundation collaborated with high school and university students from the UAE in an immersive summer program, imparting essential STEM education concepts inspired by the boundless wonders of space. This new partnership in the Northern Emirates will help to further this mission, providing teachers and students with the resources and support they need to succeed in these critical areas.
Daleya Uddin, Head of Public Affairs – U.S. Consulate Dubai, commented, “The U.S. Mission to the UAE is proud to expand its partnership with the Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research to advance our shared goals for STEM and space education, which are key to building a skilled workforce for a knowledge-based economy that will drive a sustainable future for all. The United States and the United Arab Emirates have a remarkable history of space cooperation.”
In February 1976, NASA’s Apollo 17 astronauts presented a moon rock to UAE’s founding father Sheikh Zayed in a historic moment that laid the foundation of our countries’ space collaboration. The UAE was among the first countries to sign the U.S.-led Artemis Accords in 2020, a partnership to expand lunar exploration. Nora Al Matrooshi, the first Emirati woman to be selected as an astronaut, and Mohammed Al Mulla are currently training at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston to join the UAE’s astronaut corp. The Emirates Mars Mission is another highlight of our cooperation, where women make up 34% of the UAE team and an amazing 80% of the team’s scientists.
Most recently, UAE astronaut Sultan Al Neyadi completed an extraordinary six-month mission aboard the International Space Station (ISS) alongside American and other international astronauts. He conducted an astonishing 200 science experiments in partnership with NASA and universities across the UAE.
“Since its founding, the Al Qasimi Foundation has been proud to champion cutting-edge educational and workforce opportunities that prepare our communities for the future of work,” said Dr. Natasha Ridge, executive founding director of the Al Qasimi Foundation. “The space ecosystem is the next exciting frontier of work and research. With this in mind, we are thrilled to be able to prepare our next generation of leaders in the space sector through this outcomes-focused partnership with Space Foundation. Educators will gain the critical knowledge and tools to confidently deliver high-impact STEM curricula that will help them prepare students for the burgeoning space economy.”
The partnership between the Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research and Space Foundation is expected to have a significant impact on STEM education and workforce development in the region, providing teachers and students with the resources and support they need to succeed in these critical areas.
About Al Qasimi Foundation
Established in 2009, the Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research was founded by Emiri decree. The Foundation is dedicated to advancing the social, cultural, and economic growth of Ras Al Khaimah. Initially emphasizing education, its scope has broadened to encompass arts and culture, community development, and health and wellbeing. Key initiatives encompass educational research, professional development for teachers and students, and diverse community engagement events and activities. For more details, visit www.alqasimifoundation.com.
About Center for Innovation and Education
Center for Innovation and Education is a lifelong learning provider for the global space ecosystem, offering workforce development and economic opportunity via Space Commerce Institute and Space Foundation Discovery Center. Serving pre-K-12 and university students, teachers, entrepreneurs, businesses and professionals, programs and resources are delivered in person or online around the globe. Through its Workforce Development Roadmap of programs and resources, Center for Innovation and Education enhances the outlook and opportunities for careers, jobs and business ventures. To learn more about Center for Innovation and Education, visit www.spacefoundation.org/cie, and Space Foundation Discovery Center, visit www.discoverspace.org.
About Space Foundation
Space Foundation is a nonprofit organization founded in 1983, offering information, education and collaboration for the global space ecosystem. Driven by partnerships, Space Foundation unites the entire spectrum of stakeholders — business, government, education and local communities — through support from corporate members, sponsors, fundraising and grants. Visit Space Foundation at www.SpaceFoundation.org, and follow us on Facebook, X, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube.
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