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Space Foundation Recognizes Sputnik’s Child by Bentley University Professor Fred Ledley as a Certified Space Imagination Product
The Space Foundation has recognized Fred Ledley’s first novel Sputnik’s Child as a Certified Space Imagination ProductTM, and Ledley has pledged to donate profits from the sale of the book to support Space Foundation education programs.
The novel, which was released this month, recalls the events that shaped the ideas and lives of the baby boom generation and laid the groundwork for an age of technology and its challenges. It explores how a generation was inspired by the Apollo missions to the Moon, the drama of Apollo 13 and the tragedy of Space Shuttle Challenger. Told through the eyes of a woman born the day Sputnik was launched in 1957, the story follows her from childhood through the “Age of Aquarius,” a time of social malaise, the “Me” decade and years of irrational exuberance to experience both the full potential of a technological age and its unfulfilled promise.
Certified Space Imagination ProductsTM, part of the Space Foundation’s Space Certification ProgramTM, are entertainment products, books, games or toys that increase interest in and excitement for space and inspire new generations to take an active interest in space.
“This novel underscores the power of space exploration to inspire an entire generation with hope in the face of great challenges,” said Kevin Cook, director – space awareness programs for the Space Foundation. “In a time when many are looking for a new ‘Sputnik Moment’ to galvanize a public response to contemporary problems, Sputnik’s Child revisits the phenomenal impact space exploration has had on our society.”
“Our students today have not had the experience of listening as the Apollo astronauts read Genesis from orbit around the Moon, watching as human footprints were stamped on its surface or crying when the promise of Challenger was lost,” said Fred Ledley, author of Sputnik’s Child and a professor at Bentley University in Waltham, Mass. “The work of the Space Foundation helps ensure that their generation is inspired the way we were.
“It is a special honor to have this novel recognized as a Certified Space Imagination Product and to donate proceeds from the book to the educational programs of the Space Foundation.”
About Space Certification
Space CertificationTM products and services are guaranteed to effectively promote the value of space utilization or to have stemmed from or been improved by technologies developed for space exploration. Comprising three categories - Certified Technology Products, Certified Educational Products and Certified Imagination Products – the program is administered by the Space Foundation to provide a unique marketing edge for partners, demonstrate how space technologies improve life on Earth and make space more accessible to everyone. The Space Certification program is complemented by the Space Foundation’s Space Technology Hall of Fame®, a scholarly recognition program that honors extraordinary space technologies that have been adapted to improve life on Earth. For more information, go to www.SpaceCertification.org and www.SpaceTechHallofFame.org.
About the Space Foundation and Space Foundation Education Programs
The Space Foundation is an international, nonprofit organization and the foremost advocate for all sectors of the space industry. Founded in 1983, it is a leader in space awareness activities, space-related research and analyses and major industry events, all in support of its mission "to advance space-related endeavors to inspire, enable and propel humanity." The Space Foundation is building the next generation of space leaders and improving the overall quality of education through teacher, student and community programs that integrate space into the classroom to improve students’ interest and skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). See www.SpaceFoundation.org/education. Headquartered in Colorado Springs, the Space Foundation has an office Washington, D.C., office and has field representatives in Texas and Florida. For more information, visit www.SpaceFoundation.org or follow the Space Foundation on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or YouTube.
About the author
Fred Ledley is an accomplished physician, scientist, entrepreneur and member of the baby boom generation. He has written extensively on topics ranging from biology and medicine to philosophy, ethics, education and the sense of wonder. In his first novel, Sputnik’s Child, he provides a human perspective on the ideas that influenced his generation and the faith that will inform the future. Ledley is a professor and the Chair of the Department of Natural and Applied Sciences at Bentley University, where he teaches biology, management and futurism.
The Yawkey Foundations have recognized Bentley University’s longstanding commitment to service-learning and awarded the university $500,000 to educate students to effectively lead nonprofit organizations and expand student efforts to help community groups.