MSGC Updates

There are quite a few upcoming opportunities happening over the next couple of months and the MSGC team wants to make sure that you are updated on the latest challenges, programs, internships, contests etc. 

Let the MSGC team know if you plan on participating by sending an email to mispacegrant@umich.edu

Higher Education Opportunities

FBI Forensic Science Research Opportunity
Applications Accepted on a Rolling Basis
This project involves the development of extraction and instrumental methods for the analysis of residues from detonators (primary explosives) used in criminal cases. There are currently no validated methods for the trace analysis of primary explosives. This project uses analytical techniques such as solvent extraction, elemental assays for heavy metals, ion and liquid chromatography, and mass spectrometry. You will be expanding your knowledge and experience using these and other techniques to further your educational pursuit. Previous experience with ion chromatography, Thermo Electron Orbitrap mass spectrometers, and liquid chromatography are highly desired.

Future Leaders in Public Service Internship Program – Fall 2024
Applications are open now for the fall 2024 Future Leaders in Public Service Internship Program. The program helps bring diverse young talent to government and offers students the opportunity to apply their educational training to work at a federal agency. Undergraduate, graduate and professional students from across disciplines are welcome to apply.

Dragonfly Student and Early Career Investigator Program
Application Deadline: Monday, June 10
Set to launch in 2028, NASA’s Dragonfly mission will send a rotorcraft lander to explore a variety of locations on Saturn’s moon Titan. Graduate students are invited to apply for a two-year term to work with Dragonfly mission team members to conduct Titan research, help formulate Dragonfly mission science and operations plans, or assist in the development of instrumentation, hardware, or testing. Applicants must be U.S. citizens pursuing a master’s or doctoral degree in the physical sciences, biological sciences, computer sciences, mathematics, or engineering. Undergraduate STEM students who will be graduating with bachelor’s degrees in May 2024 are also eligible to apply, provided that they will be enrolled in STEM graduate programs in fall 2024. Students who would be new to both planetary science and working on NASA mission teams are especially encouraged to apply. No prior coursework or research experience in geology, planetary science, or astronomy is expected or required.

Team spots still available for RockOn 2024
June 14 to 21
A few team spots for this year’s RockOn 2024 workshop have become available. If you are interested, please send an email to Victoria Stoffel at wff-rocksatprogram@mail.nasa.gov.

NASA Aeronautics University Student Research Challenge
Proposal Deadline: Thursday, June 20
NASA’s Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate seeks proposals for new ideas/concepts relevant to NASA aeronautics. Selected teams will receive grants for their projects and be responsible for raising a modest amount of cost-share funds through a crowdfunding platform. The process of creating and preparing a crowdfunding campaign acts as a teaching accelerator, requiring students to develop entrepreneurial skills.

Virtual Lunar Surface Science Workshop
Abstracts due June 21, 2024, 5pm CDT
The overall goal of this virtual workshop is to bring together scientific and technical professionals to suggest and discuss lunar science priority activities related to physical sciences, space biology, human biomedical sciences, fundamental physics, astrobiology, astrophysics, and heliophysics. This virtual workshop is intended for researchers at any level (student to senior professional), including academia, Research and Development (R&D) industry, and government. The workshop will include presentations from key stakeholders, posters, and breakout discussions to capture community input. The workshop aims to advance NASA’s understanding of the research community’s perspective on scientific drivers and associated capabilities for lunar surface habitat research facilities that enable and support scientific and commercial enterprises.

Virtual Space Biosciences Training Course: STAR
Application Deadline: Friday, June 28
Spaceflight Technology, Applications, and Research (STAR) is a virtual, international NASA training course in space biosciences. The annual course targets principal investigators, senior research scientists, and postdoctoral scholars. Its purpose is to facilitate participants’ entry to space biology and to prepare them for conducting spaceflight experiments using NASA and commercial platforms. The course curriculum includes space biology and its practical applications. Participants will have opportunities to interact with principal investigators with prior mission experience, developers of spaceflight technology, and flight providers. The STAR-5 Course will take place virtually between September 2024 and February 2025 and will consist of weekly virtual seminars on Tuesdays, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. ET.

NASA Postdoctoral Program Fellowships
Application Deadline: Monday, July 1, at 6 p.m. EDT
The NASA Postdoctoral Program offers early career and senior scientists one- to three-year fellowships with NASA scientists and engineers. Opportunities relate to missions in Earth science, heliophysics, planetary science, astrophysics, space bioscience, aeronautics, engineering, human exploration and space operations, astrobiology, and science management. Applicants must have completed a doctorate or an equivalent degree before beginning the fellowship, but they may apply while completing degree requirements.

NASA Psyche Inspired Internship
Application Deadline: Friday, July 26
NASA’s Psyche mission invites full-time, enrolled undergraduate students majoring in any subject at universities and community colleges in the U.S. and its territories to apply to become part of this year’s cohort of Psyche Inspired interns. Psyche Inspired brings undergraduate students together to share the excitement, innovation, and scientific and engineering content of NASA’s Psyche mission with the public through artistic and creative works.

Space Tech Challenge: Lunar Living
Submissions open August 15, 2024
The Space Tech Challenge is a competition hosted by HeroX (an online community) where contestants (or a team of contestants) submit a proposal describing their concept for addressing the challenges of long-term lunar habitation and their projected results. Submissions opened on August 15 and close on September 30. Finalists will move forward and present their proposal on October 13, and the winners will be announced on November 15. Winners receive a cash prize (5k for first, 3k for second, and 2k for third). The contest is open to all US Citizens who are not employees of JSEG or NASA and it will award cash prizes to the top three entries. Non-citizens can enter, but they are not eligible for any of the cash awards

K-12 Opportunities

NASA Science Activation (SciAct) program
The NASA Science Activation (SciAct) program connects diverse learners of all ages with science in ways that activate minds and promote a deeper understanding of our world and beyond. Browse data sets, standards-aligned lessons, events, and activities to bring authentic science to the classroom.

Bring Space Exploration to Your Classroom With NASA’s Artifact Module
Request Deadline: Friday, June 7
NASA’s Artifact Program offers your organization the opportunity to enhance STEM education and spark curiosity in future innovators by bringing authentic space artifacts into your classroom or exhibit. Enrich your curriculum with various historical items from NASA’s collection, from spacecraft models and mission equipment to astronaut gear and engineering instruments.

Go For Launch! Sault Ste Marie
July 23-25, 2024
Higher Orbits is excited to bring #GoForLaunch back to Sault Ste Marie in July! Registration is open but space is limited so register today to guarantee you can be part of this space inspired #STEM event with an #Astronaut! Join us for an exhilarating three-day event at Lake Superior State University, where aspiring astronauts and space enthusiasts in grades 8-12 (including rising 8th graders and recently graduated seniors) will have a unique opportunity to dive into the world of space exploration.

Bits & Bytes middle school camp at EMU
Camp: June 24 – 28
Bits and Bytes is an all-day, week-long, summer computing camp for middle school girls. It introduces computing and technology from theoretical concepts to applied projects. Coding is introduced through educational software and robots with the support of student mentors. The camp concludes with a hackathon and a career discovery event. It is staffed by the Women in Computer Science (WICS) club members at Eastern Michigan University (EMU) and led by a faculty member. The camp was offered for the seventh time this year to a bigger class of thirty participants. MSGC has funded the camp for two years and we are hoping that it will continue to support this camp.

Gigabytes high school camp at EMU
Camp: July 22-26
Gigabytes is an all-day, week-long, summer computing program for high school girls. It introduces computing and technology through robot-based programming. Coding is introduced through educational robots with the support of student mentors. The program concludes with a hackathon and a career discovery event. It is staffed by the Women in Computer Science (WICS) club members at Eastern Michigan University (EMU) and led by a faculty member. Gigabytes participants are not expected to have a prior knowledge of computer programming, but if they do, they will have plenty of opportunities to further that knowledge through programming of robots. The first offering of Gigabytes, in 2023, was a great success with an enrollment of 26 enthusiastic participants. We are hoping that MSGC will continue to help support and grow this program over the next few years.

2025 NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge – Now Open to Grades 6-12
Handbook Release: Aug. 1
NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge (HERC) is an engineering design competition where students design, build, and test a rover to traverse challenging terrains while completing scientific tasks along the way. As an Artemis Student Challenge, HERC draws inspiration from both the Apollo and Artemis missions, emphasizing designing, constructing, and testing technologies. The 2025 HERC activity year will be open to proposal submissions from teams of students in grades 6-12. The 2025 HERC Handbook and Request for Proposals will be released on August 1.

NASA’s Astrophoto Challenge
Entries are due Aug. 5.
Join NASA’s Universe of Learning for an exciting opportunity to use real astronomical data and tools to create your own beautiful images of Cassiopeia A. Explore how this dynamic dead star behaves across different types of light. Or just create an image that you think is beautiful. Capture your own real-time telescope image using the MicroObservatory robotic telescope network. Or work with archival data files taken with multi-wavelength missions from NASA, the European Space Agency, and the Canadian Space Agency (Webb, Hubble, Chandra, and NuSTAR).

2025 Drop Tower Challenge – Paddle Wheel
Proposal Deadline: Oct. 31
Student teams are invited to design and build paddle wheels that will turn in water because of the wetting properties of their surfaces when they are exposed to microgravity. Paddle wheels from selected teams will be tested in the 2.2 Second Drop Tower at NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Ohio. Top performing teams will have the opportunity to present their results in a student poster session at the 2025 meeting of the American Society for Gravitational and Space Research

Educator Opportunities

FY2024 TEAM II NOFO Announcement
Next Gen STEM’s Teams Engaging Affiliated Museums and Informal Institutions (TEAM II) program is pleased to announce an upcoming FY2024 Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) that will expand the current program from a two-tier to a three-tier system by adding a mid-level funding tier. The NOFO is expected to be released in the third quarter of FY2024 (April-June). The new mid-level funding tier was created in response to feedback from the informal education community. The new “STEM Innovator” tier will fund awards of approximately $250,000. In addition, the highest tier award will be designated the “National Connector” award and fund initiatives up to $900,000. The “Community Anchor” tier will continue to offer awards up to $50,000. The Community Anchor tier opportunity will be offered each fiscal year, and the STEM Innovator and National Connector tiers will be offered in alternating years. The FY2024 NOFO will include the Community Anchor and STEM Innovator tiers and the FY2025 NOFO will focus on the Community Anchor and National Connector tiers. By adding the mid-level tier, NASA and Next Gen STEM aim to broaden the number and type of awards made to Informal Education Institutions for creating innovative, NASA-inspired programming for K-12 students and their families.

Girls STEAM Ahead With NASA Program Cookbook
Create your own Girls STEAM Ahead with NASA events using NASA’s Universe of Learning resources. Like any typical cookbook, the Program Cookbook includes recipes for events that are ordered by topic. This guide includes sample event scenarios that can be used exactly as outlined to create hour-long events. Or you can mix and match resources to create events tailored to your audience’s needs and interests.

Million Girls Moonshot Resource Toolkit
Available Now
The Million Girls Moonshot Toolkit is a collection of resources — toolkits, best practices, activities, blogs — for the out-of-school time field to utilize in their efforts to engage one million girls in quality STEM learning experiences. This toolkit aims to raise awareness of the Million Girls Moonshot Transformative Practices, research-based practices proven to remove barriers to access and quality STEM learning experiences.

Sign Up to Receive “The Watch” Newsletter from the NOAA Planet Stewards Education Program
Available Now
The Watch is the largest circulation educator focused e-newsletter from NOAA, published by the National Ocean Service’s Planet Stewards program. Each issue contains curated opportunities from NOAA and NOAA partners for educators and students including webinars, workshops, and contests. There are links to educational resources and activities, conferences and reports, education and science news items, as well as information on grants, internships and jobs. Check out past issues below for a treasure trove of resources and sign up to start receiving The Watch in your inbox today! The Watch – It’s the news you can use!

NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars – Mission 1: Discover
Application Deadline: June 10
NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars (NCAS) supports community college students seeking to transfer to a four-year institution or go directly to the labor force by engaging them in authentic learning experiences. Applications for Mission 1: Discover are open now. Participants will take part in a five-week, self-paced online course introducing scholars to NASA missions and research.

Online Workshop: Futures Thinking – Exploring Ideas and Developing Skills to Shape Our World
Event Date: Tuesday, June 11, at 2 p.m. EDT
Join us as we share an introduction to the key ideas of futures thinking and resources for integrating this approach into your STEM engagement efforts. By exploring a diversity of values and orientations to the future, community members can work together to envision and shape the future we want to live in. During this online workshop, we will explore practices that can be used with diverse learners and share examples of STEM engagement activities that allow participants to consider different future scenarios.

NASA International Space Apps Challenge Seeks Local Leads for 2024 Hackathon
Application Deadline: June 15
The NASA International Space Apps Challenge is in search of Local Leads for the 2024 hackathon taking place in October. Local Leads work alongside NASA and the Space Apps Global Organizing Team to organize the Space Apps Challenge for a specific city or town. This includes planning a virtual or in-person local event, supporting local participants, and coordinating local collaborators, judges, and community members. Local Leads get the opportunity to join a global community of thought leaders from 185+ countries/territories to serve their local space, tech, innovation, and creative communities.

IDEAS (Innovative Differentiated Exploration Activities in Space Science) Team Summer 2024 Educator Professional Development Workshop
July 15 – 18, 2024
The IDEAS Team is comprised of the South Carolina Space Grant Consortium (SCSGC), North Carolina Space Grant Consortium (NCSGC), and the North Dakota Space Grant Consortium (NDSGC). This hands-on workshop is funded by NASA’s National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program. The overall goal of this workshop is to center Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) in NASA and STEM lessons and activities for both K-12 and informal education settings. Participants will be eligible to earn two Professional Development credits (30 hours) through the University of North Dakota. Interested educators are highly encouraged to contact their local Space Grant Consortium to inquire about potential funding sponsorship to attend the workshop.

Funding Opportunity: Research Initiation Awards
Proposal Deadline: Aug. 15
NASA’s Science Mission Directorate is seeking proposals for two-year research awards of up to $300,000 to faculty/researchers at institutions of higher education classified as non-R1s. Proposers must NOT have received federal funding prior to award. The program encourages proposers from Minority-Serving Institutions, primarily undergraduate institutions, and community colleges to apply. The project requires funding for undergraduate students and requires relevance in one of the Science Mission Directorate’s research goals.

Computational Astronomy Workshop for Middle and High School Educators
Online Course Begins Sept. 7
Computational Astronomy: A Universe of Calculations for Middle and High School Math and Science Teachers. The workshop is offered online starting September 7, 2024. The lectures are on every other Saturday from 9am-12pm MT. The last class time is on November 16, 2024