PARI awarded grant for Rosman Middle School field trip

The PARI campus will host a field trip by approximately 140 Rosman Middle School students, thanks to a grant from the Biogen Foundation’s Ignite the Power of STEM program, administered by the North Carolina Community Foundation.  The students will spend the day in an active laboratory environment, learning about science careers and how to position themselves for a career track in any field that makes use of STEM skills.


Press release from Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI):

PARI has been awarded a $2,500 grant to facilitate a field trip to PARI by students from Rosman Middle School.  The grant is from the Biogen Foundation’s Ignite the Power of STEM program, administered by the North Carolina Community Foundation.

“This generous grant by the Biogen Foundation and The North Carolina Community Foundation will allow us to bring about 140 middle school students to PARI and engage in a full day of learning opportunities with our astronomers and educators,” said PARI Executive Director Steve Saucier.  “The students will be hosted in an active laboratory environment to better understand science careers, the need for STEM skills and the importance of cultivating their own future opportunities.  Tentatively targeted for August, the field trip will allow students to interface with various researchers working in astronomy and atmospheric science.  In addition to learning about science with fun, hands-on activities, the students will also be able to learn from the researchers about their education, background interests and career paths.  At the end of the day, the students will not only have gained practical knowledge about science, they will also see how they can position themselves for a successful career track in any field that makes use of STEM skills.”

The mission of the Biogen Foundation is to improve the quality of people’s lives and contribute to the vitality of the communities in which Biogen operates. The Biogen Foundation is committed to sparking a passion for science and discovery, supporting innovative STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) initiatives, and strengthening efforts to make science accessible to diverse populations. For more information, visit

About the North Carolina Community Foundation

The NCCF is the single statewide community foundation serving North Carolina and has made $101 million in grants since its inception in 1988. With more than $237 million in assets, NCCF sustains 1,200 endowments established to provide long-term support of a broad range of community needs, nonprofit organizations, institutions and scholarships.  NCCF partners with 60 affiliate foundations to provide local resource allocation and community assistance in 67 counties across the state, with an emphasis on rural areas.

About PARI

The Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) is a public not-for-profit 501 (c) (3) foundation established in 1998.  Located in the Pisgah National Forest 30 miles southwest of Asheville, NC, the 200-acre campus is the former site of an historic NASA satellite tracking station.  Today, PARI is a science education and research center.  The site houses radio and optical telescopes, earth science instruments and the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive.  Exhibit galleries display NASA Space Shuttle artifacts and collections of rare meteorites and minerals.  PARI provides STEM educational programs at all levels, from K-12 through post-graduate research.  For more information about PARI and its programs, visit   


Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.