The Challenger Learning Center of NE Alabama will deliver STEM experiences designed for middle school and high school students. The space-themed simulation-based experiences are led by trained Flight Directors and take place in fully immersive and custom-designed Transport, Mission Control, and Spacecraft rooms that mirror real space industry environments.

Surrounded by technology, each student plays a unique role in the mission as the team completes assignments, manipulates hands-on labs, and copes with simulated emergencies. Teamwork is crucial, if one member fails to complete a job, the entire mission can be put at risk. This differentiated approach allows for a truly personalized learning experience where students apply critical, scientific knowledge to real-world scenarios.

Challenger Learning Centers fly students on a variety of space-related missions. Aligned with national education standards and informed by real science data, our Center Missions excite students about STEM, introduce students to careers in these fields, and help students build important 21st-century skills like critical thinking, problem-solving, and collaboration.

The CLCNA will not only inspire students to pursue careers in STEM fields, it will be an integral component of a coordinated plan to build a scientifically literate public and shape our future leaders to help improve the quality of life in northeast Alabama and beyond. We will reach a population of more than 32,000 middle-school students through strategic partnerships with the school districts in the service area. Initially, programming will target middle-school students but will expand to include grades 9-12 with hands-on learning experiences that reinforce classroom activities through space-themed missions as well as online assignments that provide pre-mission and post-mission experiences.

Ancillary STEM classrooms will augment the space missions and allow the Center to serve larger numbers of students.  In addition to programs offered during the school day, program plans include after-school and summer enrichment programs in a “day camp” format. Family activities, professional development for teachers, team-building and leadership training for business groups and community organizations, special events, and facility rental options are examples of the programming on the horizon.