Non-profit's donation will help fund a student-built rocket at UC Irvine

As Base 11 fellows, community college students spent eight weeks last summer at UCI’s Henry Samueli School of Engineering learning how to design and build drones. A $1 million gift from the nonprofit will fund a new rocketry lab at the school. (Jessica Mendoza)

UC Irvine Engineering students will have the extraordinary opportunity to create a student-built rocket thanks to a $1 million gift.

The donation was made by a non-profit, Base 11, who is seeking to produce more scientists in the U.S. workforce.

The university’s “Moonshot Initiative” off the launching pad by the fall quarter. Students will begin work as early as this fall on a liquid fueled-rocket to a height of 25,000 feet and then 50,000 feet.

UC Irvine’s goal is that the students can make a rocket within two years that will soar past the Karman line at about 328,000 feet.

``We've found that by exposing our students early to hands-on experiential learning, we have better success in keeping them engaged and inspired in their education,'' said Gregory Washington, the Stacey Nicholas

Dean of Engineering at the Samueli School. ``This partnership with Base 11 will help us create an exciting and innovative opportunity for our students.''

The nonprofit's partnership with the university is ``focused on executing a workforce development strategy that provides the engineering and computer science talent so desperately needed by aerospace, high-tech and transportation industry companies,'' said Landon Taylor, CEO of Base 11.


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