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Help SEDS Send Ahmed to SpaceVision 2015

Two days ago, a ninth grade student was arrested at a high school in Texas for bringing in a clock he had made himself to proudly show his teacher, who thought 14-year-old Ahmed had brought her a bomb. After questioning and analysis, once he was released, the police informed Ahmed that he had committed the crime of a “hoax bomb”, having built something that looked like a bomb. What a bum rap!

Hearing this story, SEDS students around the world can think back to their days in high school physics class where everything you made was SO cool and you loved showing it off to your teacher. Still thinking back to ourselves in high school, we are so impressed by Ahmed’s motivation and curiosity for participating in engineering.

SEDS is all about students helping students, and to show our support for Ahmed and for the betterment of primary STEM education, we have started a GoFundMe to send Ahmed to SpaceVision 2015, where he’ll have the opportunity to interact with hundreds of similarly motivated and curious young people and learn about space science and engineering. To balance this traumatic experience with a positive one, we’d like to give Ahmed (and one parent) the gift of travel and lodging to the largest student-run space conference in the world. Please consider contributing to help us make this possible!


What’s The Point? The Real Reason Scientists Study Space

Check out this excerpt from SEDS-USA Chair Hannah Kerner’s latest op ed — read the full article on Space.com!

As space scientists, we’re forced to explain how our work translates to people’s daily lives, how we’re helping them directly. In answering the question, “What’s the point?”, in converting the meaning of our work to units of impact on the average citizen, we are forced to dilute that meaning. In answering this question, we claim to be trying to put it “in layman’s terms,” but rather than teaching and fostering understanding, we are mutilating our work into some sort of “spin-off” explanation that feels like a lie. 

The right answer is that thinking about problems on scales like the astronomical is good. It is fundamentally worthwhile for humans to push the boundaries of their understanding, to convert the unknown into the known through the power of scientific inquiry. 

Rather than “What’s the point?” the question should be, “What does thinking about and understanding these problems mean for humans and for the evolution of humanity as a part of the universe?”


Students, are you interested in writing for Space.com or other top news sources? Contact us! No prior publishing experience is necessary… seriously!



Next SpaceTalks: Sept 10 with Charles Miller

SEDS-USA is kicking off the first SpaceTalks of the semester with Charles Miller. In his speech, he will address the idea of identifying profit opportunities and what that means in the space industry. Miller will talk to us from 6:00 to 6:30 p.m. EST on Thursday Sept. 10 and use the remaining half hour to answer questions from chapter members. SpaceTalks puts you face-to-face with leaders in space, so we encourage chapters to use this opportunity to have Miller answer their questions.

About the speaker:
Charles Miller is the president of space and public policy consultancy NexGen Space LLC – a company that provides client services at the juncture between civil, commercial and national security. As former NASA Senior Advisor for Commercial Space, Miller has led a half dozen NASA commercial space teams responsible for assessing barriers to commercial space projects and satellite servicing, as well as funded space act agreements, commercial reusable launch vehicles and solutions for space debris removal. Miller made a major push to make space exploration more accessible to the masses when he cofounded NanoRacks and founded ProSpace.

SpaceTalks is a Google+ on air Hangout that allows students to speak one-on-one with professional in their fields. While it is ok to watch the SpaceTalk online, we invite chapters to actually be a part of the Hangout. In order to reserve your spot, email andrew.newman@seds.org.

To learn more about SpaceTalks and watch previous installments, visit http://seds.org/spacetalks/.


Making Magma, Finding Exoplanets

The latest blog post in the SEDS Student Space column on space news channel Sen is now live! Read this very informative and well-written piece by Arizona State University SEDS member and graduate student, Kara Brugman: http://sen.com/blogs/seds-community/the-next-steps-in-our-search-for-life


The SEDS Talent Portal is Open!

Screenshot 2015-08-29 at 2.01.18 PM

The SEDS network is made up of thousands of extremely talented students and alumni, and the SEDS mission is to cultivate this young talent and and provide a supportive and inspiring community throughout their careers. Towards this mission we have created the SEDS Talent Portal, which allows SEDS members and alumni to post their resumes and browse jobs, posted by space industry employers who can browse resumes in a searchable format.

If you’re a member of SEDS, whether a current student or alumna/alumnus, go ahead and add your resume using this quick, simple form and get started browsing jobs!

If you’re an employer looking to share opportunities with the SEDS membership, contact SEDS Chair Hannah Kerner (hannah.kerner@seds.org) for the password to upload a job listing.

Posted by:
Hannah Kerner
Arizona State University


Registration is Open for SpaceVision 2015!

spacevision_annafisher-02Everyone get excited, because registration has now officially opened for SpaceVision 2015! This year’s conference will be hosted by BU SEDS in Boston, MA November 12-15. Visit our website for updates on the latest speaker confirmations and activities planned for the conference, as well as to book a spot in our discounted room block at the beautiful Hilton Boston Back Bay hotel. While you wait impatiently for November, take some time to check out all the fun things there are to do in Boston!

Prices increase on October 12th, so register now (and invite the rest of your space family) for what promises to be the most fun, educational, and innovative event you attend this year!


I Was Supposed to Pursue an Aerospace Engineering Degree… Woops

I was supposed to pursue an aerospace engineering degree. Woops.

I was supposed to get Helio Space off the ground this summer. Woops.

Major Changes

I changed my major to computer science. I’m rather surprised myself by this decision, but looking back, it’s actually been months in the making. Last semester I was constantly lamenting the lack of space-oriented classes in the aerospace space track curriculum (there are three I would take, consisting of ~6% of all my classes). I spoke with a friend and mentor about pursuing computer science, and he encouraged me to do it. So I added it as a second major.

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The B-Word

Beware of the B-word—are you as busy as you think you are?

Original post: https://www.planet.com/pulse/the-b-word/

Having been the Chair of SEDS (Students for the Exploration and Development of Space)—a national nonprofit providing leadership and technical experience for young people passionate about space—for two years, I have met hundreds of very smart young people overflowing with potential. Yet I have been frustrated by almost as many of them for not utilizing that potential—not seizing opportunities sitting right in front of them. Time and time again I see students pass up opportunities, or not even recognize the opportunities they have, because they are “too busy.” They’re too busy with homework. They’re too busy studying for a test on Thursday. They’re too busy to do anything on top of work and school. They just don’t have time on top of it all.

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New Partnership Between SEDS-USA and Space Generation Advisory Council

SGAC Fusion Forum Group PhotoI am ecstatic to announce that SEDS-USA and the Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC) have agreed to support each other’s efforts officially through a Memorandum of Understanding signed this Summer. The Space Generation Advisory Council is a perfect “next step” for SEDS members looking to expand and continue their space network. SGAC is for young professionals from 18-35 involved in the space industry. Through their phenomenal networking and professional development events, such as Fusion Forum and the Space Generation Congress, the SGAC is a place for SEDS members to get involved with space policy and other self-starters in the industry.

We’re happy to see where this partnership takes us and look forward to seeing the change we can make together!

Posted by:
John Conafay
SEDS-USA Executive Director
Arizona State University


SEN and SEDS Partner on Next Space Generation Column

I am pleased to announce a new partnership between SEDS and space news website Sen today with the launch of a column written exclusively by SEDS members. This blog will be the voice of the next space generation represented by our student members, with monthly blog posts written not just by members of SEDS-USA but by members of all our affiliate organizations including UKSEDS and SEDS Canada. Read More