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Be The Change Herald


Volume 71 –September 2014


Welcome to Anousheh's Be The Change Herald! Feel free to forward to others who might want to register for the newsletter and you can unsubscribe at any time.


Sepideh - Reaching for the Stars

Sepideh - Reaching for the Stars is a 2013 Persian-language Danish documentary film written and directed by Berit Madsen. The film nominated for World Cinema Grand Jury Prize Documentary (2014) in Sundance and Best Documentary (2013) in International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam won the Maysles Brothers Award at 14th Belfast Film Festival.

Sepideh is a sixteen year-old Iranian who wants to become an astronaut. But at her age the nightly stargazing excursions in the desert are a dangerous thorn in the side of family and traditions. After watching clips of world's first Iranian-American astronaut, Anousheh Ansari, she becomes even more serious in her efforts. Sepideh writes a letter to Anousheh and the letter changes her life.

source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sepideh_%28film%29

The film depicts the title character's family life, the relationship between her and her science teacher/mentor, the cultural and personal obstacles in her way and her emotional triumphs. The beautiful shots of the space in this documentary and the true story of Sepideh at times would make the viewers forget that they are indeed watching a true story and not a work of fiction.

The ASE AstroSat Challenge

"Have your students ever wondered what it would be like to operate a real satellite in orbit? Maybe they've operated a remote control car, plane, robot, or maybe even an amateur rocket; but a satellite that's orbiting the earth? The ASE AstroSat Challenge is their chance!

Gather your students together, and if your team is chosen as one of the select ASE AstroSat USA Teams, you will have the privilege of collecting one week of data from a real satellite in orbit. The data that you choose to collect is up to you and will be based on the experiment that you develop."

This challenge, by the Association of Space Explorers (ASE) and Ardusat, is open to high school students and the application period has already started. You have until October 30, 2014 to apply for participation. To learn more, please visit:


Mars Exploration

On November 18, 2013 NASA launched its Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft from Cape Canaveral in Florida, carrying three instrument packages. After 10 months of space travel, Maven successfully entered Mars' s orbit on September 21, 2014, where it now will be the first to study Mars' s upper atmosphere.

"As the first orbiter dedicated to studying Mars' upper atmosphere, MAVEN will greatly improve our understanding of the history of the Martian atmosphere, how the climate has changed over time, and how that has influenced the evolution of the surface and the potential habitability of the planet,” said NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. “It also will better inform a future mission to send humans to the Red Planet in the 2030s."

The exciting part comes from another part of our globe. India's Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) also successfully entered the Red Planet's orbit on September 24, 2014. The spacecraft was launched on November 5, 2013 and its mission is to orbit the Red Planet, mapping its surface and studying the atmosphere.

NASA administrator Chales Bolden made the following statement on India's MOM: "We congratulate the Indian Space Research Organisation for its successful arrival at Mars with the Mars Orbiter Mission. It was an impressive engineering feat, and we welcome India to the family of nations studying another facet of the Red Planet. We look forward to MOM adding to the knowledge the international community is gathering with the other spacecraft at Mars. All space exploration expands the frontiers of scientific knowledge and improves life for everyone on Earth. We commend this significant milestone for India."

To read more about MAVEN, please visit:


Indian Space Research Organization:

My Dream of Stars

My Dream of Stars: From Daughter of Iran to Space Pioneer: a book by Anousheh Ansari and Homer Hickam.

In her memoir, Anousheh recalls her long path to success and to achieving her dream.  To learn more about the book, please visit:  http://www.anoushehansari.com/book/

To find a book signing, please check the upcoming appearances section of this newsletter.

To obtain a copy please visit:



Anousheh's Favorite Quote:


"Life is short - Live your dream and share your passion."
-From the Holstee Manifesto