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University to host leading international space education program in 2015

The International Space University (ISU), the world's premier international space education institution, has chosen Ohio University as the host site for its 28th annual Space Studies Program (SSP) session during summer 2015.

Supported by major space agencies and aerospace organizations from around the world, ISU will convene "SSP15" from June 8-Aug. 7, 2015, drawing about 170 engineers, scientists, and legal and medical professionals from government and space agencies, academia and aerospace companies.

The intense nine-week program offers the participants a unique and comprehensive professional development experience covering all aspects of space programs and enterprises, including lectures and activities with leading space professionals such as astronauts – with some events open to the general public. Disciplines highlighted include space physical sciences; space engineering; space policy, economics and law; space management and business; space and the humanities; space applications and human performance in space.

According to ISU president Walter Peeters, choosing Ohio University was the culmination of a growing relationship between OHIO and ISU.

"ISU Dean Angie Bukley served OHIO's Fritz J. and Dolores H. Russ College as Stocker Visiting Professor, and Russ College Dean Dennis Irwin is an ISU faculty member who has twice chaired the space systems engineering department and regularly served as a lecturer or workshop leader," Peeters said. "As such, there was no surprise to receive a well-thought and excellent SSP proposal from them which was approved enthusiastically by ISU's Board of Trustees."

Ohio University President Roderick McDavis says the institution is pleased to support the advancement of space exploration and discovery through the use of its academic and research facilities.

"Ohio University's quest to be the nation's best transformative learning community relies upon a vibrant campus culture and thought-provoking academic encounters. Bringing future leaders of the global space community to Athens will provide unique opportunities for our students and the surrounding community, moving us closer to our vision," he said.

Gary Martin, SSP director, cited Ohio University's attributes and the region's natural beauty as positive factors. 

"With its cutting edge academic facilities and modern accommodations all situated in the rolling hills and forest of southern Ohio, the university is one of the nicest spots in America," Martin said.

SSP sessions target young and seasoned professionals from all disciplines, as well as post-graduate university students. Team projects allow participants to refine the topic as a team, and also produce professional quality reports and final presentations, all in the span of a few weeks. Recent sessions have convened in Barcelona, Vancouver, the NASA Ames Research Center, Beijing and Melbourne (Florida).

Russ College Dean Dennis Irwin, who has participated in ISU since 1998, says he is confident that the presence of the committed and accomplished professionals who participate will enhance and invigorate the intellectual environment of the Russ College.

"The chance for faculty to interact with the participants will certainly lead to new ideas and approaches – and that interaction is exactly what the Russ College is known for," Irwin said.

About International Space University

The International Space University (ISU), founded in 1987 in Massachusetts is now headquartered in Strasbourg, France. The graduate level programs offered by ISU are dedicated to promoting international, interdisciplinary and intercultural cooperation in space activities. ISU offers the Master of Space Studies program at its Central Campus in Strasbourg. Since the summer of 1988, ISU has also conducted the highly acclaimed Space Studies Program at different host institutions in locations spanning the globe. ISU programs are delivered by more than 100 ISU faculty members in concert with invited industry and agency experts from institutions around the world. Since its founding, 25 years ago, more than 3,500 students from over 100 countries graduated from ISU.