Some of you have said – Wow Mission Discovery sounds really awesome but there’s not one near me… how do we make one happen closer to where I am? You may be shocked to hear that it is not as hard as it might seem! Honestly, we as the Mission Discovery Team do all the work for the actual camp we just need some help with initial logistics etc.
First and foremost we need a place to host the camp. Ideal places are a university or a museum but other places will work as well. What we need within the place to host are the following things
- Room that we can do presentations to a large group
- Needs to have projection availability for PowerPoints and Videos
- Seating for all the campers (number will obviously be dependent on interest and availability)
- Ability to break into smaller groups within the same room as presentations are done (ideal) or adjacent rooms that we can break up groups to work in
- Wi-Fi throughout any area we will be working in
- Some computers available for student use
- A place for the students to have lunch each day (does not necessarily require a cafeteria but at least a place to have food catered into
- We are trying to minimize costs because we want to make this camp as affordable as possible so ideally we would like to have the space “donated” to us but we can work on financial details if necessary
We need help with local contacts and media to promote the event. Obviously the number of students needed to make this camp feasible is dependent upon the expenses associated with the camp (and every camp’s expenses are different) but I think in general it is fair to say that a minimum of 50 students will be needed to make a camp possible. However the more students we have the more that we can offer as part of the camp. Ideally it would be great to have local businesses sponsor portions of the camp and/or students to attend the camp. (If you are seriously interested in the sponsorship information please let me know and I can email you some sponsorship stuff we have outlined.) Honestly for these companies the publicity they could get out of it would be very valuable.
We like to have student mentors to the campers. Generally these are college/university aged students who are studying a STEM subject. We found that what the University of Adelaide did was ideal. They had the student group AIAA run point on setting up the logistics that we needed taken care of (such as reserving the rooms, setting up food – since we had no idea where was best since we’d never been to Australia), helping reach out to the community, getting mentors for us etc. I think John who was in charge of this would agree that it was a great learning experience for them and it helped us tremendously!!
Obviously the best times to schedule a Mission Discovery is when there is a school break – think Spring Break, Fall Break, Winter Break or summer. It would be possible to do a 3 day camp instead of 5 if that would work better for your area than a 5 day.
Other than that we show up and make Mission Discovery happen! I hope if you have any interest for your area you’ll let me know or if you know anyone else who may be interested in having a Mission Discovery at their University etc. that you will pass along this information to them! Drop me a note if you want to talk in more depth!!