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AIA Reminds Young Americans: We Are the Explorers

Crowdfunding Campaign Exceeded Goal By Nearly $20,000

The Aerospace Industries Association (AIA), in partnership with Challenger Center for Space Science Education, sponsored a first-of-its-kind crowd funding campaign to place a trailer before "Star Trek Into Darkness" ... which opened May 17 ... to educate the public, most especially young people, on the exciting human spaceflight programs now underway. The trailer will play in more than 50 cities nationwide.

"With the end of the Space Shuttle program, there seemed to be a widespread misperception in the media that the U.S. human spaceflight program was over," said AIA President and CEO Marion C. Blakey.  "Nothing could be further from the truth. And young people contemplating their future need to know that there are many exciting career opportunities in aerospace."

Despite the fact that more human spaceflight systems are currently in development in the U.S. than at any other time, public awareness of American spaceflight has decreased since the highly visible Space Shuttle launches ended.  To get the facts out, AIA and Challenger Center teamed up in an effort to show students and the public that space programs not only are alive and well, but have a bright future.

The campaign to place the ad was crowd funded via IndieGoGo, with more than 1,700 people donating nearly $53,000 – far surpassing the original goal of $33,000. Sporting an average donation of just $30, the first-of-its-kind drive clearly demonstrated grassroots support for American space programs. The additional funding allowed the campaign to push the trailer into all 50 states.

"This was more than a fundraiser, it was a demonstration of the importance the public places on space exploration," Blakey said. "Pairing this trailer with the new Star Trek movie was a natural fit – the commitment to excellence, ingenuity and innovation seen in Star Trek is alive and well in our space programs and our industry."

The ad will run for eight weeks in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles and Washington, DC, and one week in the rest of the country.

FMI: www.aia.aerospace.org

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