This is our first report on iTelecope.Net's 2013 Education Grants Program, and what a first quarter its been for 2013. This is a great story, and we are very excited, but not half as excited as our grant receipients, it would seem.
One of the fundamental issues in education today is capturing the passion of young people into science and math, the innovation engine of a nations future, its intellectual capital and ability to innovate. Social media has been at the forefront of engageing people in Science through Citizen Science programs like CosmoQuest, Zooniverse and also here at iTelescope.net where amateur astronomers do hundreds of hours of science each month.
Our first grant of the year went to the College Saint Exupery in Perpignan, France. A humble 400 points to enable them to do several Exo-planet transits for a local science competition. Immediately I was impressed with the quality of their grant application, they had a keen apetite for discovery of new things and were fascinated with concept of TTVs - Transit Timing Variations, and the prospect that they might be able to detect something really exciting.