“The Earth is the cradle of humanity, but mankind cannot stay in the cradle forever” – Konstantin Tsiokovky, Russian Rocket Scientist
It indeed is true. Mankind was born on Earth, but it was never meant to die here. This is what Space Exploration is all about.
My name is Mansidak Singh, and I am a High School Student who aims to become an Astronaut and an Astrophysicist. I aim at making human life interplanetary and eventually interstellar. Currently, I am in 12th grade and running a global outreach initiative – Voyager Space Outreach – whose mission is to promote the passion for Space Exploration and Astronomy among people and provide resources to students.
The urge to go out, explore, and eventually make human life interplanetary is what inspires me. I never had any teacher specialised in Astronomy who could teach me and my peers about the wonders of the universe. We had various clubs in our school, Science Club, Maths club, Cooking club, Gymnasts club and others. But we never had an Astronomy club. Whenever any student asked a space-oriented question, that question was always left unanswered. Always.
But that didn’t stop me from pursuing my space dream. I decided to initiate a club myself. A club in which not a teacher, but a student will teach. There was never a club started by a student all by his own in my school. But that totally changed when I gave my first introductory presentation to the students. The response from the students was immense. Many student asked question related to black holes, space missions, astronaut and what not. I answered all of them as best as I could.
Never did I realise that all my effort would lead to an international organisation with hundreds of members from all across the globe. I started receiving requests from all across the world to join. I turned ‘Voyager Space Club’ to ‘Voyager Space Outreach’, a global outreach initiate that aims at promoting the passion for Space Exploration and Astronomy among people.
Right now we have hundreds of global members, numerous volunteers and Board Members working tirelessly to take Voyager Space Outreach (VSO) to the next level. We at VSO have a Club program, where we provide resources to students who want to start a space club in their communities. All of our programs are free, since we believe in free education. We have a Volunteers Program, STORIES Program, Club Program and Regular Membership Program. All of our programs help people who are passionate about Space to promote Space in their own communities depending upon individual needs and requirements.
I am now invited by different schools all around the city to conduct workshops on Space and Sciences. This has allowed us to inspire the next generation of space-enthusiasts. Our recent program, the STORIES Program, identifies passionate people from all across the world who are promoting STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics) education in their own communities via different outreach initiatives or anything that they are doing to bring a change in the world.
VSO is being led by STEM and Space Leaders who are highly accomplished students in their own communities. Our Blog writing Board consist of Rebeka Oláh and Ellie Humphreys. Rebeka Oláh is an enthusiastic debater from Hungary. She is the winner of an award from Johnson & Johnson for her outstandingly winning essay in one of the New York Academy of Sciences’ STEM Programs. Ellie Humphreys is a highly accomplished student from Hong Kong. Her activities range from teaching students about Maths and Sciences and holding leadership positions at various of her school’s program to attending lectures on Astronomy and Black Holes at Harvard University. VSO’s advisory board position is held by Ilya Vadimovich Kursenko from Russia, who is the United Nations Comprehensive Test-Ban Treaty Organisation Youth Group founding member, former Governing Body member of the European Youth Parliament and a publisher at Russian Foreign Affairs Council.
This summer, I was invited by the New York Academy of Sciences (NYAS) to attend the Global STEM Alliance Summit 2018 in New York, USA. I won the ‘Mentee of the Month Award’ in one of the programs of the Research academy and therefore was awarded with the ‘Distinguished Student Award’ Medal from NYAS. I was one of the only 7 students from all across the world and the only student from India to bag that prize. Winning this award allowed me to attend a global conference with full travel and accommodation scholarship.
Attending the Global STEM Alliance Summit 2018 allowed me to get exposure to more space-enthusiasts like me and share my initiative with them. The motto of our organisation is “We Were Never Down To Earth”. I hope we are able to make Space Exploration great again. Join us on the quest to promote Space and Astronomy!