CCC + NASA Invite You to Take Part in a Once-in-A-Lifetime Opportunity

Hi, Comets!

We are asking you to consider an extraordinary opportunity.

All CCC students are invited to join CCC the APECS (Astronomy, Physics, Engineering, Computer Science) department in the NASA National Community College Aerospace Scholar program.

Students from any major are invited to join. 

We want 60 or more participants—as many as we can get!

Key things you should know:

You do not need to be a STEM major. Tell everyone you know. You do need to have taken or be taking some Science, Technology, Engineering or Math classes, though. Participants need a combination of STEM (which includes math, of course) classes taken and being taken to add up to at least 9 units.

There’s room for all fields of study at NASA. There have been journalism majors that tell a team’s story. Biology majors find many ways that this program enhances studies and career opportunities. 

You are capable and prepared enough. Participants will be at different levels of math and various sciences (bio, chem, physics, computer science…). That is fine! You will work in teams and each person will contribute something different. The wide range of skills that participants have is a positive. 

This will set you apart in your applications for transfer or jobs. People that look at you will not just want a high GPA for coursework. They want more. In fact, often a 3.20 with experience is more desirable than a 4.00 student. Transfer schools and employers want to see you working with others in clubs, committees and, especially, projects. Yes, this will require work outside of your courses, but don’t make the mistake of not realizing how important this is. Let’s talk about the load and timeline…

Project management skills will be a big part of this and is extremely valuable. Working in teams, time management, and so on are thematic in your journey. Even if know one knew you did this program, your skills will shine. Your growth will be supported in a variety of ways. 

> Mission 1 (August/September) — DISCOVER: (Read a short, but full, description of these missions on the very clear website linked below.) a 5 week, not too heavy, online course that teaches you about NASA and opportunities. You do this on your own, but are encouraged to chat with others, including the APECS and STEM faculty and volunteers. You must take little quizzes and you must get at least 70% to advance. You will work on a personal profile, of sorts. This is very supportive of learning how to present yourself. 

Mission 2 (mid to late fall)— EXPLORE: (Must have successfully complete Mission 1) In another 5-week endeavor, choose either of two simulations 1. Planning a mission to Moon or Mars, or 2. Simulate what it is like to be a NASA employee. 

Completion of M1 & M2 makes you a “NASA NCAS ALUM.” That can be a big deal. You can write it on applications, but you will also be in the loop for various NASA opportunities. 

Mission 3 (February, 2024)—INNOVATE; (Must complete both Mission 1 & 2) Work in a team on an engineering design challenge. Some team members will help the team do computer programming, there will be robotics designs to meet parameters set by NASA NCAS, some members will organize the work, some will work on presentation and communication….see the link below. This will culminate in a four-day intensive including robot competition, university tour, STEM industry tour, talks. This is like being in a company that is bidding for a job from NASA. This develops valuable real-world/work skills. 

We have a new Maker Space you can learn to use and many fantastic facilities to aid an impressive presentation of you project. 

What do you need to do?

Although it is not required, it will be very advantageous to take the following courses in the summer and fall:

  • COMP-110 (a very accessible, 2-unit intro programming with Python). This is well-suited for summer, but don’t take too much in the summer.
  • ENGIN-112 (in the fall) – a very hands-on class with explorations into various engineering fields but also hands on work with arduinos/robots/soldering and stuff for Mission 3. 

Also, the newly forming APECS Club will embrace a variety of projects, like rockets and whatever you want to do…solar boat race, star party hosting…fun, but valuable stuff. Maker Space training? You should also be aware of our CSE (Center for Science Excellence), as that is another connected opportunity for you. 

Interested in getting a huge boost in your transfer and career explorations and opportunities? You will get out what you put in. Think and work outside the box of just doing classes. 

Sign Up with APECS Register with NASA NCAS

Thank you,

APECs Faculty

Prof. Jon Celesia —

Prof. Mark Wong —

Prof. Chao Liu —

Prof. TJ Bansal —