The wait was finally over! Saturday was when the Southern Hemisphere Space Studies Program (SHSPP23) staff got the ball rolling as the participants arrived at Mawson Lakes campus, checked in with the hotel, got registered and received their merchandise gear. This was an exciting time for all of us as we got to meet and introduce participants in person.
On Sunday, the International Space University (ISU) staff introduced themselves to the participants which was followed by the SHSSP23 co-director Goktug Karacalioglu and our IT expert David giving a tour of the campus, showing us around all the buildings, library, study area, basketball courts and the gym.
Monday was the most exciting day yet as it had the opening ceremony with everyone dressed in their country’s attire or formal clothing and had a chance to walk behind their nation’s flag. Many profound people from the space industry, from defence & from government made an appearance to commemorate the ceremony.
Later throughout the first week, participants attended core lectures, workshops, and were given a task to build a Rube Goldberg machine, which is a chain reaction–type machine intentionally designed to perform a simple task in an indirect and overly complicated way. In this team-building task, participants had to opt leaders within their subgroups, communicate well with other team members, and in a very short time to build a machine which is both effective and efficient. The entire aim of this exercise was to get students into a habit of working in a team environment to bring out the best for their final TP presentation.