IAF Education & Young Professionals’ Activities

ico-educationIn accordance with its mission to prepare the workforce of tomorrow, the IAF actively supports and has a growing number of activities targeted at students and young professionals.

The nearly one quarter of attendees at the International Astronautical Congress (IAC) under 35 years testify to the success of these efforts.

The primary education activities of the IAF are:

– The Emerging Space Leaders Grant Programme;
– The Young Space Leaders Recognition Programme;
– The Young Professionals Programme;
– The IAF Student Competition;
– The Malina Astronautics Medal and Napolitano Award.

In addition, three dedicated IAF committees guide and supervise activities dedicated to students and young professionals involved in education, including the:

IAF activities in the area of education include:

Emerging Space Leaders Grant Programme



This programme enables up to 14 students and young professionals to participate in the International Astronautical Congress, the UN/IAF Workshop and the Space Generations Congress

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Awards for students, young professionals and educators

Student Awards 2012_large

Awards to honour students, young professionals and educators for their achievements, including the:
IAF Student Competition
Frank J. Malina Astronautics Medal
Luigi G. Napolitano Award
Young Space Leaders Recognition Programme



The IAF’s International Project/Programme Management Committee (IPMC) in coordination with the IAF’s Workforce Development/Young Professionals Programme Committee (WD/YPP) organises this workshop to gather inputs from young professionals in the international space community on their interests, concerns and training needs.


Cross-Cultural COMMUNICATIONS AND Presentation Workshop

The Workshop is designed for both native English and non-native English speakers and provides Emerging Space Leader grantees and IAC Next Generation plenary speakers with the opportunity to rehearse and review their presentations.

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Young Professionals Programme at the IAC


Three dedicated networking sessions during the IAC allow young professionals to meet with some of the most experienced space professionals and to connect with their peers.

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Global Technical Symposium (GTS)

This programme facilitate the participation of Young Professionals at the IAC, allowing them to share information on a global scale with presenters and audience both at the IAC venue and online from their home, work or university location.

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ISEB Student Programme at IAC

The International Space Education Board (ISEB) Student Programme at the IAC offers a unique learning agenda with a large variety of dedicated activities designed to provide students with opportunities to engage, speak with and learn from space programme senior management, globally recognised subject matter experts, young professionals and peers.


Educators Professional Development Programme

The IAC Educator Professional Development Programme was launched officially in 2010 at the International Astronautical Congress in Prague. The workshop is designed for primary and secondary educators to teach about a variety of science-rich space contexts that they could bring into their classrooms to enhance learning in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).



IAF International Student Workshop

This workshop, organised by the IAF Space Universities Administrative Committee (SUAC) and partner universities, brings together students and experts to exchange about latest developments and to present their hardware.

Read about the 2015 IAF – SUAC International Student Workshop at Israel Institute of Technology

Read about the 2013 Tsinghua University IAF-SUAC International Student Workshop

SpaceMatch – IAF E-Mentoring Programme

This E-Mentoring programme connects students and young professionals with space experts to help them with career orientation, academic projects and IAC papers