Investing in Our Future: Preparing the Next Generation to Occupy Mars

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 Investing in Our Future: Preparing the Next Generation to Occupy Mars
Purdue University Press
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Book Description

Having the desire, ability, and belief in yourself to innovate beyond what past generations ever imagined possible, explore ground none has ever walked on, and live and work in ways no one has ever lived and worked—these skills may not only increase the next generation’s chances for success in the new century, in an employability and globally competitive sense. If Stephen Hawking and others are correct, they may be necessary to ensure our survival. Investing in Our Future: Preparing the Next Generation to Occupy Mars by Buzz Aldrin and colleagues speaks to the need to cultivate new innovators and explorers whose dreams will move us forward, and whose travels will likely take us back to the moon and beyond. Its threefold purpose is (1) to reignite our passion to be limitless, ever-curious problem solvers, (2) to foster a STEM-literate citizenry to innovate in ways we cannot yet imagine, and (3) to frame plans for leveraging what we know to enable the next generation to visit and possibly live and thrive on Mars. In this book, the authors deliver a compelling, succinct, and timely vision for recasting our approach to K–12 education to prepare a changing world for a successful future.

About the Author(s):

Buzz Aldrin is an American engineer and astronaut. He served as a jet fighter pilot during the Korean War, and earned his doctor of science in astronautics at MIT. In 1969, Aldrin and Neil Armstrong made their historic Apollo 11 moonwalk, and Aldrin is decorated with numerous awards, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Gold Medal. Aldrin is the author of nine books, most recently his children’s book, Welcome to Mars: Making a Home on the Red Planet, as well as No Dream Is Too High: Life Lessons from a Man Who Walked on the Moon. His ShareSpace Foundation is focused on STEAM Education—science, technology, engineering, arts, and math—to spark excitement for space in kids. In August 2015, he launched the Buzz Aldrin Space Institute at Florida Tech to promote and develop his vision of a permanent human settlement on the planet Mars.

Carla C. Johnson is an international scholar in STEM education. Her research has informed STEM education policy both in the United States and abroad. Johnson has over 100 publications to date, including research on effective STEM teaching and learning, programs and schools, and has authored STEM curriculum for use in the United States and in China. Her recent book, STEM Road Map: A Framework for Integrated STEM Education has served as a guide for both STEM policy and practice in systemic reform. Johnson serves as the director of research for the Department of Defense-funded Army Education Outreach Program that provides STEM opportunities for students in elementary school through college. She also is editor of the School Science and Mathematics journal and has received nearly $50 million in funding to support research and development in STEM education. Johnson is a professor of science education in the College of Education at Purdue University. She received her doctorate from the University of Cincinnati in curriculum and instruction with emphasis in science education.

Andrew Aldrin serves as the director of the Buzz Aldrin Space Institute (BASI) and is an associate professor at Florida Institute of Technology (FIT). BASI is a multidisciplinary institute created to advance space exploration and development toward the goal of establishing and maintaining a permanent human presence on Mars. Prior to FIT, Aldrin was president of Moon Express and director of business development and advanced programs at United Launch Alliance, where he oversaw the development of corporate strategies, business capture, senior customer relations, and advanced program development for civil space markets. Aldrin also previously headed business development and advanced programs for Boeing’s NASA Systems and Launch Services business units. Additionally, he served as a resident consultant at the RAND Corporation and professional research staff member at the Institute for Defense Analyses. Aldrin holds a PhD in political science from UCLA, an MBA from TRIUM, an MA in science technology and public policy from The George Washington University, and an MA in international relations from the University of California, Santa Barbara.