Press Releases  |  10.3.2014

Fifth-grade Class in Alabama Named Arthur C. Clarke Challenger Center Classroom of the Year

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Challenger Center, in partnership with The Arthur C. Clarke Foundation, today announced the Arthur C. Clarke Challenger Center Classroom of the Year Award will be presented to the fifth-grade class at the Montana Magnet School in Dothan, Ala. The award recognizes the classroom for demonstrating great success in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education.

“This class embodies everything Challenger Center was set to accomplish,” said Dr. Lance Bush, president and CEO of Challenger Center. “These students have demonstrated their willingness to strengthen their scientific knowledge, and I hope their work will inspire themselves and their peers to explore careers in STEM fields.”

The class was nominated by the Challenger Learning Center of Tallahassee. The Tallahassee Center is one of more than 40 Challenger Learning Centers around the globe.

“There are many qualified classrooms and teachers, but the scope of the work and efforts by the fifth grade team of teachers at Montana Magnet stands out as exemplary,” said Susan Borland, education manager of Challenger Learning Center of Tallahassee.

Montana Magnet exemplifies the interdisciplinary nature of the Challenger Center experience with science teacher Patricia Altman, english teacher Melinda Scott and math teacher Christa Glenn all taking part in the pre- and post- lessons the class completes, as well as supervising the trip.

“It’s clear that these students are eager to apply themselves to STEM,” said Dr. Joseph N. Pelton who heads the Arthur C. Clarke Foundation’s International Educational Awards Programs “We are delighted to help recognize this group of students and educators as the first Arthur C. Clarke Challenger Center classroom of the year.”

About Challenger Center for Space Science Education
As a leader in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education, Challenger Center and its international network of more than 40 Challenger Learning Centers use space simulations to engage students in dynamic, hands-on opportunities that strengthen knowledge in STEM subjects and inspire students to pursue careers in these important fields. Centers across the US, Canada, United Kingdom, and South Korea reach hundreds of thousands of students each year. Founded in 1986, Challenger Center was created to honor the crew of shuttle flight STS-51-L: Dick Scobee, Gregory Jarvis, Christa McAuliffe, Ronald McNair, Ellison Onizuka, Judith Resnik, and Michael J. Smith. For more information, visit

About the Arthur C. Clarke Foundation
The Arthur C. Clarke Foundation was established in 1983 in Washington, D.C., as part of World Communications Year celebrations at the United Nations, an international event sponsored by the United Nation’s International Telecommunication Union (ITU). The Foundation was created to recognize and promote the extraordinary contributions of Arthur C. Clarke to the world, and to promote the use of space and telecommunications technology for the benefit of humankind.