The penn state student space programs lab: Training the next generation of space systems engineers

Sven Bilen, Brian Schratz

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This paper addresses the formulation and implementation of the Student Space Programs Lab (SSPL) and its integration into the curriculum at The Pennsylvania State University. The Lab has adopted specific strategies for maintaining continuity in an incredibly dynamic workforce and for sustaining heritage and a knowledge base from one project to the next. A Lab-sponsored first-year seminar course provides an on-ramp and training ground for at least 20 new students each year. The Lab has utilized the resources Pernn State has to offer and leveraged opportunities for our students. It also strives to encourage international collaboration as a valuable resource and learning experience for its students. Finally, by providing students the opportunity to participate in SSPL-sponsored projects as part of regular course projects and exercises, the students are able to enhance their educational experience while earning valuable credit towards graduation requirements. Specifically, the Lab supports a Certificate in Space Systems Engineering that formally certifies students' knowledge, experience and effort in developing space systems. While the SSPL may be a new organization, recent successes and experiences show that the paradigm shift toward collaborative interdisciplinary efforts improves the student experience. This experience will prepare them to make significant contributions to the area of space science and engineering.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - 2008
Event2008 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition - Pittsburg, PA, United States
Duration: Jun 22 2008Jun 24 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering


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