SGAC membership has been steadily growing throughout the years. Among our membership there are many incredible young space enthusiasts who should be recognised for their hard work and contributions to SGAC. In December 2009, the SGAC Executive Council decided to acknowledge one member per month for his or her outstanding work and contributions to SGAC and its goals.
We are proud to present the June 2010 Member of the Month: Christopher Andrew Vasko of Austria, SGAC Webeditor
Christopher Andrew Vasko was born in Vienna, Austria. After high school he chose to study physics at the Vienna University of Technology bringing him in contact with the topic of space and space-research from a scientific perspective. During his studies he became an active voluntary member of the Austrian Space Forum (ÖWF), a local Austrian space group founded by some of the first members of SGAC. There he participated in various projects as an engineer, such as a simulated international Mars mission, developing and constructing a remote controlled rover and a stratospheric balloon for experiments. Later he participated in the ESA Summerschool program, designing a sample recovery mission to the Moon, which won an award as "Young Lunar Scientist Project" later that same year, at the International Lunar Conference 2007. As an intern at an Austrian company he helped developing a novel plasma propulsion engine for space applications and wrote his thesis on the impact of highly charged ions on surfaces at the Vienna University of Technology. After that he got involved with SGAC as an intern to the Vienna Office. His interests lie in astrobiology, plasma physics and bioengineering, computer aided-design (CAD) and astrophysics. Christopher is currently doing his PhD in physics at the Eindhoven University of Technology in The Netherlands.
Aziz Kayihan (Turkey), Regional Coordinator Middle East, nominated Chris:
“After Chris joined SGAC, the first great job he did was the Annual Report. Besides this, he went on to complete other great jobs as well. He made the SGAC website look very good and work smoothly, which was a hard work to do, but he did an excellent job. He really jumped on to things and got very tough responsibilities. He really devoted himself to SGAC and adapted very quickly. Thanks to him our website is running so well, a reason for which I am perhaps the most happiest to have him in SGAC. He is a great colleague, team mate and friend. I am glad SGAC members agreed with my thoughts and voted Chris. He is and will always be a precious member of SGAC”
And here is our MoM June reaction:
"I have first heard about Space Generation Advisory Council when Agnieszka Lukaszczyk, our current Chair, moved to Vienna and told me about this international organisation of young enthusiasts, apparently just as hungry for space as myself. As it turned out, some of my colleagues at a local Austrian space group were present when SGAC was founded and can be considered as "SGAC dinosaurs". When the Intern position at the SGAC Vienna office was announced, I was just graduating from university and was looking into options to work and jumped at this unique opportunity. SGAC and the work with Ariane and Agnieszka have been a great benefit to me - I have learned so much about our organisation, the people involved and how space policy is being done. It was truly a rush, 3 months including two meetings of the COPUOS Subcommittees, long nights compiling reports from all over this world for our annual report, challenging discussions and an internship at the European Space Policy Institute. SGAC and its network have widened my horizon and taught me so much - above all, that we are truly the Space Generation and that we are standing on the Shoulders of Giants that paved our way here. Our dreams, hopes and fears can shape our future and it is up to us live our dreams every day. I am proud to part of this - thank you all for your nomination."