Kennedy News

Amber Philman
Kennedy Space Center, Fla.

Ann Marie Trotta
Headquarters, Washington

June 8, 2011
RELEASE : 11-180
NASA Offers Grants For 2012 University Competitions
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- The NASA Minority Innovation Challenges Institute (MICI) is offering opportunities for minority serving institutions to apply for a $5,000 grant to enter the 2012 University Student Launch Initiative (USLI) or Lunabotics Mining Competition. Applications for both competitions are due June 30.

USLI challenges students to design, build and launch to an altitude of one mile a reusable rocket with a scientific or engineering payload. The project engages students in scientific research and real-world engineering processes with NASA engineers. The competition will take place at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., in April 2012.

The Lunabotics competition challenges students to design and build remote controlled robots that can excavate simulated lunar dirt. During the event, the teams' designs, known as lunabots, will go head-to-head to determine which one can collect and deposit the most dirt within 15 minutes. This competition will take place at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida in May 2012.

MICI is designed to inspire minority undergraduate students to pursue advanced degrees and careers in science, technology, engineering and math disciplines critical to NASA's future missions.

For more information about the grant and how to apply, visit:

For more information on NASA's education programs, visit:


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