Jim Elliot/Yukon News
Malcolm Ellis, left, and Charles Snider, two of the Whitehorse students selected for the Canadian Space Agency’s Junior Astronaut camp this summer, pose for a photo in front of Vanier Catholic Secondary on May 27.

Jim Elliot/Yukon News Malcolm Ellis, left, and Charles Snider, two of the Whitehorse students selected for the Canadian Space Agency’s Junior Astronaut camp this summer, pose for a photo in front of Vanier Catholic Secondary on May 27.

Seven Whitehorse students invited to junior astronaut camp

The students will get to meet astronauts and learn what it takes to get people into space.

A group of Yukon youth will get an out of this world opportunity during their summer break from school.

Seven students from the Whitehorse area will be tuning in remotely to learn about the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) in a summer camp hosted by astronauts and other experts.

The camp is being hosted virtually this year due to the ongoing pandemic.

The Whitehorse students will be among 52 from across the country attending the camp from July 26 to 30. According to the CSA, the camp’s focus will be immersing the young space enthusiasts in a series of fun and engaging activities that will teach them a variety of things about space and the space agency.

The Whitehorse students selected for the camp are: Maddison Mills and Kerric Masters, both Grade 7 students at Takhini Elementary School; Sam Pullar, a Grade 7 student at Golden Horn Elementary; Aurora April who is in Grade 10 at CSSC Mercier; Kale Neumann Dar, a Grade 8 homeschool student; Charles Snider and Malcolm Ellis who are both in Grade 8 at Vanier Catholic Secondary School.

The students chosen for the camp were selected through a random draw from a pool of candidates who had completed online Junior Astronaut activities in the past. The activities dealt with science and technology, fitness, nutrition, teamwork and communication. According to the CSA, each of these areas are important for Canada’s astronauts.

Snider and Ellis found out about the camp after a CSA representative came to their class last year. The Grade 8 students said they enjoyed the activities put on by the CSA which included building gliders and designing badges for a future space mission. They thought the camp would be a fun opportunity to do more of the same.

Both boys said it would be interesting to meet astronauts. Ellis said he was particularly interested in the exploration and colonization of Mars.

“I feel like that’s where the future could be,” he said.

As part of their application to the junior astronaut camp, Snider and Ellis had to put together videos of themselves. Ellis’ video focused on reasons he wanted to attend the camp such as meeting new people and building skills. Snider’s focused on why he would make a good astronaut.

Camp participants will get a chance to operate a real rover on a simulated mission to the moon, solve problems using satellite imagery of the earth and work out with astronauts.

“Through initiatives like Junior Astronauts, the CSA and its partners are inspiring the next generation of Canadians to reach for the stars and are encouraging their interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM),” the CSA announcement reads.

Contact Jim Elliot at jim.elliot@yukon-news.com

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