Astronaut Scholars Soar High

In 2016, Florida Tech became one of the 35 educational institutions allowed to award the Astronaut Scholarship through the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation (ASF).

ASF was started in 1984 by the six surviving Mercury 7 astronauts as the Mercury 7 Foundation. Their goal was to encourage students to pursue scientific endeavors to keep America progressive in the field of technology. They achieve this by providing scholarships for students who excel in STEM. Since then, ASF has grown to include astronauts from the Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, Skylab and Space Shuttle programs as well as more than 400 astronaut scholars.

Astronaut Scholar Honor Society

Students eligible for the award must first be nominated by faculty at the presenting institution. They must show strong leadership skills, academic achievement and a strong background in STEM research. Students are then reviewed by a school ASF committee which selects four students to be reviewed by the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation Scholarship Committee where two are then selected for the award.

In the first year of Florida Tech’s award, I was honored to be one of 40 nationwide recipients of the Astronaut Scholarship for 2016. Myself, along with Andrew Douglass, were inducted into the lifelong Astronaut Scholar Honor Society as well as received funds to help pay for our final year of our undergraduate degree.

A little bit more about us

Astronaut Scholar
Andrew Douglass

Andrew Douglass is from Brookville, Pennsylvania and a senior in Aerospace Engineering and Mathematical Sciences. His research focuses on the optimization of variable span electric unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). After graduation, he will be working for SpaceX as a launch vehicle controller while continuing at Florida Tech for a Master’s in Commercial Enterprises in Space.

Astronaut Scholar
Allie Folcik

I’m Allie Folcik from Wilmot, New Hampshire. I’m a senior in biochemistry with a minor in sustainability. I have worked on multiple research projects. They include researching biomarkers for organ toxicities caused by taking tyrosine kinase inhibitors (cancer drugs.) In addition, I am currently working on small particle tracking of Chlamydamonas reinhardtii. And I investigate the effects of bacterial quorum sensing molecules. After I graduate, I will attend Texas A&M with a fellowship to pursue my PhD in toxicology.

Most noteworthy, since our induction, Andrew and I have been able to meet and network with many astronauts at the Astronaut Rendezvous. We’ve been mentored by fellow ASF members.  And we will be attending the Astronaut Hall of Fame Induction in May. I am thankful for and look forward to the future opportunities with ASF. – URL about ASF


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