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Picture collage of museum's TARC Team

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Have a blast with us!

Rocket launching behind museumThe National Museum of the U.S. Air Force is inviting students entering grades 9 through 12 to apply to be a member of the museum's "The American Rocketry Challenge" (TARC) team for the 2021/2022 school year. Applicants should have a strong desire to work on a team of students learning about rocketry principles with the goal of participating in this national level engineering challenge involving designing, building and launching rockets! They should also have the time and dedication needed to commit to this extensive project. Materials and equipment are provided by the museum.

TARC is the world's largest rocket contest and involves having students design, build and launch rockets to meet a specific goal which changes each year. For example, this year, students are tasked with designing a rocket to reach the exact altitude of 800 feet, stay aloft between 40 and 43 seconds, and safely launch and return a raw egg back to earth. This is a very well-respected program by government agencies, industry and academia - with a multitude of sponsors and partners including NASA, the Department of Defense, the Federal Aviation Administration, the National Association of Rocketry, Raytheon, Northrop Grumman, and many more. Please go to the TARC website to learn more at https://rocketcontest.org.

The museum is looking for students who are eager to learn, who want to contribute to a team effort, and who have the time and interest to devote to this program. It requires a lot of work to be successful, but the rewards are numerous! Colleges and employers are looking for students with just the kind of experiences and skills that being on a TARC team will develop. And designing, building and launching rockets is great fun, too!

Previous experience with building a rocket is not a requirement. However, a dedication to learn and the willingness - and ability - to spend the effort and time is a must!

The program runs from mid-summer to the following April (extends through the middle of May should the team qualify to participate in the Finals event held in Virginia). The frequency of meetings varies throughout the process, with weekly meetings (or even twice a week) typical in the late winter/Spring. Some meetings are held virtually and some are held at either the museum (Dayton, OH) or nearby. Launches are held in various locations around the area (currently at the museum or outside Cedarville, OH). The team meetings and launches will follow any pandemic protocols in place at the time.

For more information about this, or other educational programs, please contact the Education Division at nationalmuseum.mut@us.af.mil or call (937) 255-8048.

Materials for this program are provided through the generosity of the Air Force Museum Foundation, Inc. 
(Federal endorsement is not implied).

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