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Richland One Joins NASA Serving as Official Event Site of the James Webb Space Telescope Launch

WebbRichland One has joined nearly 500 other official sites nationwide to celebrate the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope, NASA’s next space science observatory. Prior to the launch of the telescope on Dec. 18, Richland One offered a range of training programs to bring STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) enrichment to its teachers who will share the knowledge with their students.

“The Challenger Learning Center of Richland One is honored to be selected as an official NASA Community Event host for the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope,” said Dr. Carolyn Donelan, Richland One’s lead flight director of the Challenger Learning Center. “The James Webb Space Telescope has the potential to revolutionize our understanding of the universe as much as Hubble did. We want our students to be able to celebrate this generational moment and be able to say, ‘I remember when Webb launched.’” 

The training provided to Richland One teachers included:

  • A compilation of resources and information from NASA to be shared with students;
  • Key themes for the various other audiences;
  • The science of the telescope;
  • Best practices in facilitating speaking engagements for experts; and
  • Virtual event strategies.

Donelan said that the district has collected and curated resources for its teachers that they can easily incorporate into their lessons to prepare students to view and understand the launch. The resources are available to the public at The Challenger Learning Center.

Webb is the most grand and premier space science telescope ever built and is led by NASA and European and Canadian space agencies. The international mission’s observatory will provide a fresh view of the cosmos and launch the field of astronomy into a new era. The Webb is expected to solve mysteries within the solar system, looking beyond to distant places and probing the origins of the universe and various unidentified structures. Exploration is to be extended to previous NASA missions like the Hubble Space Telescope, Chandra X-ray Observatory and Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite.

For information specific to Richland One, contact Donelan at, and for information about Webb event locations, visit