ScholarshipsFrequently asked questions about our scholarship program.
Science Project Information:
- Where can I find more information about how to design and conduct a science project?
Many good ideas for science projects are online and in books. Just make sure that you credit your sources. You should not copy an experiment but instead, find a way to make it your own. Demonstrating that you understand how to conduct an experiment or use the engineering design process is important to reviewers. For an experiment, find out why a hypothesis cannot be “proven” and how to create a testable hypothesis. Learn about how to design an experiment. What is a control? Do you need to perform more than one trial? There are several good websites such as: www.sciencebuddies.org, At https://www.stevespanglerscience.com/2012/01/16/science-fair-911-demonstrations-vs-experiments/, you will find a discussion of the difference between a science demonstration and an experiment and how you may turn a demonstration into an experiment. Parents and teachers may find www.teachengineering.org helpful for engineering design projects.
- The applicant qualifies in more than one category – how to choose?
Supporting documentation for a category counts for 10 out of a possible 100 points for the completed application. It is best to apply in your strongest category. Be sure to include information about other strengths, including those that would apply to a secondary category, in the body of the application. For example, if an applicant applies in the financial needs category but has strong leadership and/or academic achievement qualifications for the Spirit category, please include these strengths in your essay and patch design.
- The applicant has not completed a science project in school. Is it really necessary to complete the application?
Yes, the application will be not be reviewed if each component is not completed.
- Should the science project be related to space exploration?
No, the science project topic does not need to be related to space exploration. For projects following the scientific method, reviewers want to see a well-designed experiment and that the applicant clearly understands and explains the experiment following the steps of the scientific method. For projects following the engineering design process, reviewers want to see that the applicant clearly followed the steps, including planning, to build a testable model.
Selection, Scoring and Application Tips:
- What role should a parent play in the application process?
Parents may help set up the login information but should put the account in the child’s name. There is a place on the form for parental information. Parents and other adults may provide technical help, such as help with uploading documents and adults are welcome to offer guidance. The child is expected to complete the application components.
- Should I submit additional materials in support of my application?
It is permitted but as a general rule, there should be no need to upload anything beyond what is requested within the body of the application. Links to videos and PowerPoint presentations will not be reviewed.
- How are applications selected for scholarship awards?
Applications undergo a three-stage review process with a panel comprised of Space Camp alumni, staff and volunteers. Applications are graded on a 100-point system with the following components:
- Category documentation (15 points)
- Science project following the scientific method (an experiment) or the engineering design process (30 points). The description of the project must include photos that support the project description. The project can be one that was done at home, but it must include photos, which are worth up to 10 points.
- Mission patch (25 points) that highlights the applicant’s achievements, goals and inspirations. This component includes a written description (10 points) explaining the patch. The patch may be hand-drawn or created electronically.
- Essay (30 points)
- Do you have any general tips for scholarship applications?
- Be sure to follow instructions carefully. For example, if the instructions say, “must include photos,” then be sure to include photos for that section. You are responsible for uploading photos and other required uploads in the designated formats.
- For the patch requirement, be neat with your drawing or illustration. For your description, give the reviewers a full understanding of accomplishments, who you are as a person and your goals and inspirations.
- Albert Einstein was famous for his “thought experiments.” However, thought experiments are not acceptable for the science project in this application. You must actually conduct an experiment or design and build a testable model for an engineering design challenge.
For the science project, very carefully follow the instructions. For example, it is a good idea to list each step in the scientific method or engineering design process as you apply it to your project. If you are not sure about a step in the scientific method or the EDP, learn about it! For your photos, it may be helpful to include a photo of your data, such as a bar graph of your results. If you use a project that you found in a book or online, please credit your source but don’t copy it – find a way to make it your own. Your conclusions should be original and specific to your own results. You may use inexpensive, household materials. Be creative!
- Have fun!
Eligibility and Other Opportunities:
- If my child will be 9 before camp begins but will not yet have completed the 4th grade, is she eligible to apply for a Space Camp scholarship award?
A child will be eligible to apply for a Space Camp scholarship application if he or she will be 9 years old prior to camp. We do encourage applicants to wait until after completing the 4th grade, however. The Space Camp curriculum for children ages 9-11 assumes that a child has the equivalent of a 4th grade education before coming to camp.
- If I received a full scholarship before, may I apply again?
If you have previously received a full scholarship from the Space Camp Foundation, you are not eligible to receive another one. However, if you received a scholarship from another sponsor, you may apply for a scholarship through the Space Camp Foundation. The application includes additional details.
- If I pay for my child’s camp and he or she receives a scholarship award, will I be able to get a refund?
Yes, if your child receives a scholarship award, you will receive a refund for the tuition and registration fee. If your child does not receive a scholarship award and you wish to cancel, you will need to follow the Space Camp cancellation policy. The $100 registration fee is nonrefundable.
- If an applicant does not receive a scholarship award, are there any other Space Camp scholarship opportunities?
Yes. There are other scholarship opportunities available. Some are restricted according to age, geographic area, whether a child is from a military family or some other qualifier. Try searching online for Space Camp scholarships. Alabama applicants who are age 12-14 may apply for SALSA. Please see www.spacecamp.com/salsa for more information.
Instructions and Troubleshooting:
- I would like to work on the scholarship application with a friend. Is that okay.
Each component in your scholarship application must be your own work. It is okay to work on the application with a friend but you may not duplicate each other’s content for any of the components. If you want to work on the science project together, for example, each person may conduct independent but related experiments or design challenges.