Last year, science teacher Jennifer Copperthite resigned from Fauquier high school due to her husband’s work, and moved down south to Huntsville, Alabama. Copperthite, her students and fellow teachers were saddend by the news. However, it also brought opportunities for new adventures in her coming future.
After switching states, there was a lot of adjusting to do. “We had to get new driver’s license, change our car registration, get new doctors, set up utilities, and change our address for everything,” said Copperthite, “After living in the same house for 16 years, doing all of this for four people was very time consuming.” Unfortunately, Copperthite was diagnosed with a low stage of cancer which she went to treatments for throughout the fall. Nevertheless, Copperthite managed to make the most of her situation and spent a lot of time in her new pool at her house.
After settling in, Copperthite got a job at Space Camp which she started this past January. “I am an education presenter. My job is to teach about space travel, astronomy, heat shield design, and a variety of other topics,” said Copperthite. She said that sometimes she will just give a short lecture and other times she will be running labs, games, and other activities. “I’m actually doing a lot of the same things I did in the classroom at FHS,”
Space Camp focuses on activities that incorporate Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) and aerospace technology. Campers learn about National Aeronautics Space Administration (NASA) history as well as the current and future status of space flight and technology. Activities include astronaut training, running simulations of shuttle missions, and team building projects. The camp also hosts astronauts who come to speak every week as well as many other surprise guests. “Last week, I saw James Corden, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett, and Chris Pratt,” Copperthite said, “With this year being the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, we are expecting a lot of really cool guests.”
Space Camp is for ages 9-11. Other affiliated programs accommodates different age groups such as the Space Academy for ages 12-14, Advanced Space Academy for ages 15-18 as well as family, adult and teacher camps. Some camps are only a few days long, while others last up to a week. For more details and to sign up, visit http://www.spacecamp.com.
Copperthite enjoys working at Space Camp; however, she says she still misses FHS. “Every time I go out, I think I see someone from ‘home.’”
Her son Alex Copperthite, who attended FHS, has mutual feelings. “He misses his FHS friends, but he has found a great group of friends here too.” Copperthite said she is happy, there is social media so she and her family can still keep in touch with friends and family from Fauquier.
by Rachel Singleton–News Editor