The mission of the Missouri Consortium of the National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program is to maintain and enhance, through the State's research universities and corporate partners, the Nation's workforce capabilities in aerospace and space related science, engineering, and technology; and to aid in the dissemination of NASA related information to students, faculty, researchers, and the general public. The specific goals of the Consortium are to inspire, motivate, recruit, educate, and train students at all academic levels to help meet Missouri's and NASA's need for skilled, knowledgeable, diverse, and high-performing professional scientists, engineers, technologists, and educators in the fields of interest to NASA.
The mission of the Consortium is being accomplished through the following objectives:
- Maintain and expand a network of Missouri universities and corporate partners with interests and capabilities in aerospace and space related science, engineering, and technology.
- Inspire, motivate, recruit, educate, and train students, especially women, underrepresented minorities, and persons with disabilities, for professional careers in all disciplines of interest to NASA.
- Promote and enhance a strong science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education base from elementary through university levels.
- Support interdisciplinary education, research, and public service programs involving the STEM fields.
- Encourage cooperative education and training programs in aerospace and space related science, engineering, and technology among universities, aerospace industry, and other federal, state, and local entities.
Strategies for Achievement
The achievement of the above-mentioned objectives is being pursued through the following strategies:
- Accomplish higher education workforce development efforts by conducting a Graduate Fellowship Program involving research in areas related to NASA's Mission Directorates. Competitive fellowships are awarded to doctoral or master's degree candidates in aerospace and space related science and engineering.
- Conduct a competitive Undergraduate Research Internship Program supporting and mentoring undergraduate students with the intent to provide undergraduate training through independent student research and contribute to the national workforce.
- Enhance workforce preparation by recruiting and supporting outstanding Missouri students to participate in graduate and undergraduate research programs at NASA Field Center Summer Internship Programs and Academies along with Corporate Research Internships in industry.
- Promote a strong science, technology, engineering mathematics and base at the university level through the support of Scientific Research Groups and Engineering Design Teams.
- Support Pre-college Education Programs that expose aerospace and space related science, technology, and engineering topics to young students in such a way as to be an enjoyable learning experience; leaving students, parents, and teachers with a better appreciation for, and understanding of, these disciplines. An emphasis is being placed upon K-12 pre-service teacher training and in-service teacher professional development and capability enhancement.
- Sponsor Public Outreach Programs to provide a broad scope of awareness and informal education to the general population in order to promote and encourage participation in space related activities.