First Place Awards
The Outstanding Activity Award allows the Institute to
acknowledge sections that have held an outstanding activity
deserving of additional recognition. The winners are:
Very Small (tie): Sydney, Michael West, section chair—
Aerospace Futures Conference. This conference brought
together university students from across Australia with representatives
from the Australian and international space industry
to discuss current research, careers, and future prospects in the
aerospace sector. As part of the conference, the Section also
hosted an evening public panel discussion on the roles of government
and industry in Australia’s nascent space sector.
China Lake, Ying-Ming Lee, section chair—50 Years of
AIAA at China Lake.AIAA at China Lake. The Section celebrated its 50th anniversary
with a special celebration honoring both the history of the
Section and its members. The program began with a presentation
by Section officer, Jeff Scott, followed by an award ceremony
for members with special focus on five individuals who
have been AIAA members for 50 years. Capping off the evening
was a multimedia presentation by guest speaker, Wallace Martin.
Inspired by the recently installed AIAA Historic Aerospace Site
plaques, this presentation featured pictures, videos, and personal
stories highlighting the most important contributions made by scientists
and engineers at China Lake in the history of the facility.
Small: Northwest Florida, Ben Dickenson, section chair—
Eglin Air Force Base Flightline Tour. The Section organized
and led an educational tour of Eglin AFB with the first state-funded
STEM Center. Seventy-three students and ten chaperones
learned about the F-35, F-15, and F-16, with an emphasis on
the use of electromagnetic spectrum for flying operations. While
touring the aircraft the students were placed in teams of five to
answer a 20-question quiz. The quizzes were graded and the
top two teams were awarded prizes.
Medium: Central Florida, Randal Allen, section chair—
Wings ’n’ Things. This was a STEM K–12 event held at the
Florida Air Museum at Sun ’n’ Fun in Leesburg, FL, in which
Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, and their sisters built and flew model
rockets. Approximately 300 youth took part in this full-day event.
In the morning session, they built their model rockets. After
lunch, they launched their rockets, some multiple times—until
they ran out of engines. Section members and AIAA/UCF students
participated in this full-day activity.
Large: Northern Ohio, Kevin Melcher, section chair—
Young Astronauts Day. The Section, NASA Glenn Research
Center, and Sierra Lobo Inc. hosted 350 students (15 middle/
high school teams and 15 elementary teams) from 19 different
communities and schools for the 20th anniversary edition of
Young Astronauts Day. Throughout the day-long event, students
were challenged with various hands-on (STEM) activities.
Demand for participation in this event is high—the 30 team slots
fill fast and there is always a waiting list!
Very Large (tie): Los Angeles/Las Vegas, Nicola Sarzi
Amade, programs officer—Annual Awards Dinner and Book
Signing. This event had the largest attendance in recent Section
history with 259 people participating. As a result of this dinner,
the Section recruited 2 new professional members and 24 new
student members. Guest speakers Buzz Aldrin & Francis French
had a book signing. The event was both successful and profitable.
Greater Huntsville, Tom Kmiec, section chair—Civil
Space Symposium. This symposium, held for the first time, was billed as “Civil Space 2013: Accelerating Tomorrow’s
Commercial Space Marketplace.” It was a two-day event to
bring together government and industry to discuss the mutual
goal of efficient, effective, and reliable access for payload and
crew to near-Earth space. The conference was unique in that
the focus was not on exploration, but on Earth orbital concerns
and solutions. It served as a working-level conference designed
to highlight some of the biggest challenges facing the market
today, including technology gap, market stability, obsolescence,
and integration and safety standards.