Today marks the 25th anniversary of the Challenger disaster. It’s hard for me to believe it’s been that long. I think that’s probably the first real tragedy I have a memory of. It it was one of those “defining moments” for people of my generation, where you remember where you were and what you were doing when it happened. Many of us were watching live at school, and I think everyone has seen footage of the shuttle breaking apart. It’s just one of those things you never forget.
Those seven men and women did not die in vain, however. Their passion for learning and space and exploration led their families to set up “The Challenger Center for Space Science education,” which serves both as a memorial to the astronauts aboard the Challenger, and a way to educate and inspire children. That is truly an example of turning tragedy into triumph!
On January 28, 1986, our nation lost seven heroes as the Challenger Space Shuttle was destroyed shortly after launch. It was a tragic day, etched in the minds of us all and in the history books of our nation.
And yet tragedy let to triumph, as the families of the astronauts created an educational program to honor the astronauts and inspire the next generation. They formed the Challenger Center for Space Science Education, with a mission to “inspire, explore and learn”. Now with a national network of 47 Challenger Learning Centers, the program takes students on simulated missions to space, reaching 400,000 students every year and over 4,000,000 during our 25 year history.
Join us for a year-long series of events, as we honor the legacy of the Challenger 7 heroes and celebrate the accomplishments of the Challenger Learning Center network.