Each year , members of the Notre Dame Rocketry Team staff a booth and at the Saint Joseph County Public Library Science Alive Fair. This day-long event invites Community organizations, schools, and businesses to share their love of science with children through exciting, hands-on learning experiences and to bring the SJCL mission of “Learn. Discover. Enjoy” to life. At our station, local children and their parents were able to interact with our communications ground system, our air braking payload, our subscale rocket model, and rockets from previous years. The team answered countless questions about the rocket, the team, and the future of aerospace engineering. We had a blast and hope we were able to inspire some young minds to pursue rocketry and STEM!
Boys and Girls Club
This year the Notre Dame Rocketry Team began a long term partnership with the Boys and Girls Club of St. Joseph County. The team worked with the older division of the club, students 7th-12th grade. Over the course of the spring semester, we discussed various aspects of rocketry and the design method we used. Some topics included computer aided design, payload design, propulsion, and stability. Each visit included hands-on projects that varied from designing their own “safe recovery” system to exploring propulsion through the classic “mentos and coke” experiment The project was concluded with a model rocket launch with rockets built by the students. This was obviously the highlight of the project! NDRT looks forward to working with the Boys and Girls Club next year and continuing this great partnership.
College Mentor Activities
Last year members of the Notre Dame Rocketry Team partnered with Saint Mary’s College Academy of Tutoring program to visit students at Navarre Intermediate Center and introduce them to the fundamentals of rocketry. After a short introduction to the basics of rocketry, the 5th and 6th-grade students were tasked with constructing their very own paper rockets. NDRT members guided students through a quick design process, from the concept stages to testing. By the end of the event, the students were all able to “launch” their paper rockets by blowing air through a drinking straw. The students were amazed by the work of NDRT and could not stop asking questions about our rocket.