Press Releases | 11.20.2023
Challenger Learning Center at the Scobee Education Center, San Antonio College, Awarded Arthur C. Clarke Award for Innovation in Education
Washington D.C. (November 20, 2023) – Challenger Center has recognized Challenger Learning Center at the Scobee Education Center, San Antonio College, with the 2023 Arthur C. Clarke Award for Innovation in Education for its new Santikos Micronaut Center.
The John L. Santikos Micronaut Center is designed to spark the imagination of students from pre-K through third grade with STEAM-focused (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) activities. The students experience a spacecraft launch video that transports them to the International Space Station. With their teacher acting as mission commander, the children exit into a space station-style room full of 12 hands-on, interactive science activities exploring geology, geography, physics, and other STEM subjects. Many of the exhibits are bilingual.
Challenger Center’s President and CEO, Lance Bush, shared, “The Santikos Micronaut Center is an excellent complement to the already successful Challenger Learning Center at the Scobee Education Center. The data shows that we need to reach students with inspiring STEM programs early and often. Engaging with these students at this age helps to build a strong foundation and begin to foster excitement and interest in STEM subjects.”
“Many of our community’s children are not provided a broad vision of career possibilities,” said Rick Varner, Director of the Scobee Education Center. “The Micronaut Center allows us to help fill that need. In its first two months, the Center served more than 600 early learners, which is more early learners than any other complete year since the Scobee Education Center opened nine years ago.”
Each year, the Arthur C. Clarke Award for Innovation in Education recognizes a Challenger Learning Center that has implemented a new, innovative program or project that impacts student learning, supports teachers, and/or promotes creativity. The award was presented during Challenger Center’s 2023 Annual Conference. Challenger Learning Center at the Scobee Education Center receives $400 as part of this year’s award. Award nominations were made by Challenger Learning Centers across the country.