The task was a bit overwhelming at first, but the students learned to work together to safely launch the shuttle and bring it home.
“There was a lot of buttons,” said Lilli Urton, 11.
Urton got to be the mission’s pilot, while Dick the commander. And Burkett got to pull the strings of the mission as the flight director.
“(The flight director) bosses them two,” said Burkett, about Urton and Dick, who were both in his flight mission group. “He has command of the whole thing.”
The three-day, two-night experience was certainly a memorable one for all involved, especially those students who learned to work together to solve problems that may arise in the darkness of space.
“You get to meet a lot of people you didn’t know ... even in (your own) grade,” said Dick.
Dunn said the March trip was one of his most enjoyable, but in a bittersweet way. He said there’s a chance this year’s Space Camp trip may be the last for Meece because prices for the program have increased.
“Unfortunately, this may be the last time we get to go,” said Dunn.
That’s one reason some of the students took advantage of the opportunity when they did.
“I knew it might be the last year, so I wanted to go,” said Burkett.
Whatever the motivation, the students were able to come home armed with knowledge that not everyone can experience first-hand. And that’s why the trip is so valuable, according to Dunn.
“It’s a lot of work to get together,” said Dunn, who noted they’d been planning the trip since October, “but once you get to go, it’s worth it.
“I’ve been I don’t know how many times, but I think I enjoyed it more this time than before,” Dunn added.
And the experience sparked in many of the students further curiosity into the realms of science.
“I think science is the most interesting subject,” said Urton.
“You have more hands-on things than in other subjects,” added Dick.