You could really hear the excitement in their voices when Lauren Overton (second from the right) and Isabel Waring (third from the left) shared details from their recent trip to the US Space Camp, sponsored by Bentley Systems.
The Future City team from the Academy for Science and Foreign Language in Alabama, won first prize at the 2016 Future City Finals in Washington, D.C. in February and attended US Space Camp this summer as part of their grand prize package.
Upon arriving at Space Camp, Lauren, Isabel, and the rest of the team got to meet Don Thomas, an engineer and former NASA astronaut. “He told us what it was like to be in space and how he became an astronaut,” the girls recalled. “He never gave up his dream of wanting to become an astronaut, his story was really eye-opening.”
Before Space Camp, being an astronaut seemed like an abstract and unreachable profession to the girls. After meeting astronauts at Space Camp, Isabel and Lauren realized that, “astronauts are just like us!” and added that they are both “totally ready to become an astronaut or engineer!”
Beyond meeting astronauts, the team participated in a zero gravity simulation in which they built tubes and other materials as if working in a real space shuttle. “The activities and simulations really helped our team work skills!”
The trip to Space Camp was also a great cultural experience for the team. “We got to meet all of these wonderful people, including a girl from England and a boy from Canada. We got to share our different opinions, view, and experiences with everyone there. It really changes you for the better,” said Isabel.
Both Lauren and Isabel are looking forward to competing in Future City again this year!