April 27, 2020–Following the Executive Order by Texas Governor Greg Abbott closing all schools in the state, the SystemsGo Board of Directors has canceled all remaining plans for Rockets•2020, including Goddard-level student rockets at White Sands Missile Range (WSMR).
“We are tremendously disappointed that our launch season is another casualty of the Covid-19 virus,” said Rebekah Hyatt, Program Director. “This saddens us deeply as it is now clear that students will not return to the classroom and will not have the opportunity to work in teams to complete their rockets for testing by the end of the school year.”
Rockets•2020 is the SystemsGo event where students from high schools across New Mexico and Texas launch rockets they design and build as part of the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math program.
The original launch dates were scheduled in April and early May at three launch sites in Texas and one in New Mexico. The New Mexico SystemsGo program is considering rescheduling launches for this fall.
The staff also is exploring options for additional launch times to allow Goddard rockets completed this year to be tested in 2021 at WSMR. However, access to the U.S. Army facility is extremely limited so those have not been confirmed.
“We look forward to a fresh start next school year,” Hyatt said. “For now, our main wish is for all to remain safe and healthy.”
SystemsGo is a STEM program designed for students to learn 21st Century workplace skills in a project-based program where they design, build, and launch rockets. The student teams design vehicles to meet specific criteria, such as sending a one-pound payload one mile high or passing the sound barrier.
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