Hands up who wanted to be an astronaut when they were little?
While I didn’t quite make it as an astronaut I was fortunate enough to develop a career building and testing satellites and putting them into space. I go into schools and talk about space and my career, I just love the wow factor of space and of course I get a few ‘cool’ points from our Young Engineers! As part of this I am always keen to help children find ways to learn more about space and use it as the basis to develop their knowledge and interest in STEM subjects.
The European Space Agency has today announced a new initiative to help young people get excited by space. Mission X is all about helping young people train like an astronaut and learn about being fit and healthy. Children from between the ages of 8 and 12 can register as part of their primary school class. There will be a dedicated website that allows the schools to share their activities and progress and the children will compete with real life astronaut Thomas Pesquet.
When I was a child being an astronaut or even just working in the space industry felt like a pipe dream but now it is a very credible career opportunity. There are numerous UK space companies covering everything from building satellites to using space pictures for environmental monitoring, you can even attend Space School in Glasgow. Our young children will likely live to see us land on Mars and go further and deeper into space so if you have a little astronaut at home then why not get them and their school involved!