JET and UK Space Command sign collaboration pledge

JET and UK Space Command sign collaboration pledge

April 29th 2024: The branch of the MOD which represents the UK’s interests in space, UK Space Command, and STEM-inspired youth charity the Jon Egging Trust (JET), have today signed a memorandum of understanding aimed at broadening access to space for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The MOU was signed at UK Space Command’s headquarters at RAF High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, by JET CEO, Dr Emma Egging, and Commander of UK Space Command, Air Vice-Marshal Paul Godfrey. The MOU signifies the start of a collaboration between the two organisations and pledges: “to work towards the betterment of the community through providing inspiring engagement opportunities for young people across the UK.”

JET and UK Space Command are currently co-designing a series of space-related sessions which will be delivered within JET’s existing three-year Blue Skies programme from September 2024. Blue Skies develops teamwork, leadership and employability skills in under-confident students living in areas of high deprivation, and uses STEM and space environments as a springboard for inspiration. Students alternate between in-school sessions which boost confidence and resilience, and workplace visits which broaden horizons and aspirations and introduce students to careers which they may never have considered or have considered out of reach. The co-designed space sessions will be plugged into the existing Blue Skies framework and are aimed at inspiring students to think more deeply about what space means to them, and how it impacts their day-to-day lives.

JET CEO, Dr Emma Egging, says that the partnership with UK Space Command builds on twelve years of support from the RAF, and will help to deliver the charity’s vision that every JET student should have access to space opportunities as part of their Blue Skies journey.

“Space touches every aspect of modern life, and yet so often people see it as an abstract concept which doesn’t relate to them,” says Emma. “By working with UK Space Command to build inspiring space-related content and workplace opportunities into our programmes, our students are able to gain an understanding of what space means for them, grow their confidence and aspirations, develop vital competencies including teamwork and communication skills, and get a real sense of the breadth of career opportunities available within the sector.”

AVM Godfrey says: “Space technology enables and underpins our daily lives, while the UK space sector employs nearly 50,000 people of all skillsets, backgrounds, and experience. Through this joint venture, UK Space Command and the Jon Egging Trust will demonstrate to thousands of young people that space really does matter, and everyone can be involved.”