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American Public University System and Policy Studies Organization to Host Two-Day Virtual Conference on Space Studies

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va., Sept. 16, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- In an effort to elevate a multi-disciplinary conversation on the growing role of space in education, exploration and commerce, American Public University System (APUS) is teaming up with the Policy Studies Organization (PSO) to host its first-ever virtual Space Education and Strategic Applications (SESA) Conference on October 15 and 16, 2020. The free event will feature speakers from NASA, the U.S. Air Force, Lockheed Martin, Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), Johns Hopkins University, Georgetown University, and American Military University (AMU) among others.

American Public University System is teaming with the Policy Studies Organization to host a two-day virtual conference on Space Studies on Oct. 15 and Oct. 16.

You can view the preliminary agenda and register to attend at the SESA conference registration site (

The two-day virtual conference, which starts at 8 a.m. Eastern on October 15, will include discussions on space exploration, space entrepreneurship, space medicine, Mars exploration rovers, among other related topics. It will foster more in-depth conversations about issues related to military and civilian space at the intersection of science, technology and policy at a time when space operations have become increasingly important, due in part to the recently established U.S. Space Force.  

Numerous roundtable panels and keynotes will take place, including sessions led by:

  • The Honorable Barbara Barrett, Secretary of the U.S. Air Force;
  • Dr. Julielynn Wong, a physician, scientist and pilot who is internationally recognized for using 3-D printing to deliver healthcare solutions to remote environments, including outer space;
  • Max Lantz, Commandant, National Security Space Institute;
  • Maria Demaree, Vice President of Space Ops at Lockheed Martin;
  • Carl Starr, Mission Operations Manager, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center;
  • U.S. Navy Lt. Jordan Foley, Georgetown University Law Center;
  • Dr. James Reilly, retired NASA Astronaut and developer of the American Public University System's Space Studies Program;
  • Todd Barber, Senior Propulsion Engineer, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

"It's such a crucial time for space studies, both globally and at our university, said Dr. Vernon C. Smith, Provost of APUS. "We are excited to bring together so many forward-thinkers in both commercial and military space to amplify the global conversation. This virtual event is part of APUS' long-term commitment to Space Studies, a discipline with accelerating interest and for which we have structured relevant curricula to support both undergraduate and graduate pursuits."

APUS continues its student-centered approach to help advance knowledge of space studies in several ways, including the planned creation of:

  • A Center for Space Studies which fosters collaboration in identifying and creating educational opportunities to support the development of a workforce for the growing needs of the space sector;
  • An observatory featuring a fully remote-controlled 24-inch reflecting telescope equipped with a highly sophisticated digital camera, which acts as a dedicated resource for original astronomical research in Charles Town;
  • A new Space Education and Strategic Studies Journal, which covers a range of space-related topics and accepts submissions from experts in the field.

APUS is co-hosting the event with the non-profit Policy Studies Organization, a sponsor of conferences, publisher of academic journals and producer of programs which disseminates scholarships and information to serve those making and evaluating policy. Conference presenters can submit manuscripts of their presentations for potential publication in the journal, either prior to or following the conference.

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About American Public University System
American Public University System, recipient of the Online Learning Consortium's (OLC) Gomory Award for Quality Online Education and five-time recipient of OLC's Effective Practice Award, offers more than 220 online degree and certificate programs through American Military University, the #1 provider of education to the U.S. military*, and American Public University. Over 100,000 alumni worldwide have benefited from APUS's relevant, flexible curriculum and value, 72% completing their studies with no APUS-incurred debt**. For more information, visit

*2018 Department of Defense data as reported by Military Times, 2019.

**As of Dec. 31, 2019. Includes alumni who graduated with an associate, bachelor's, or master's degree from APUS. Student loan debt is defined as student loans and private education loans used for tuition, fees, living expenses, and book costs associated with courses taken at APUS.

Frank Tutalo
Director of Public Relations



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