Russia’s elite space program opens doors to Filipino scholar

Wilfredo K. Pardorla Jr. in Russian Samara University’s 14th International Summer Space School program. Photo via businessmirror.com.ph

By Rizal Raoul Reyes/businessmirror.com.ph – Teacher-researcher Wilfredo K. Pardorla Jr. of Saint Cecilia’s College-Cebu Inc. is very inspired from the experience and knowledge he acquired from Samara University’s 14th International Summer Space School in Russia, saying that it helped broaden his horizon in space satellite technology.

“Samara University offers one of the best aerospace engineering courses. It is like the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the US. They had built in-house and launched their own satellites and nanosatellites, such as AIST-1, AIST-2, AIST-2D, Samsat-218, Samsat-QB50, etc,” he said in an e-mail interview with the BusinessMirror.

It was a milestone for Pardorla for being the first and only Filipino to qualify in the elite space program. It was made possible with the support from the Department of Science and Technology-Philippine Council for Industrial, Energy, Emerging Technologies Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD) and the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (Unoosa).

Samara University is one of the best institutions that offer aerospace education courses in the world. The university established the International Summer Space School in 2003 with the Progress Rocket and Space Center and the Volga Branch of the Russian Academy of Cosmonauts, and is supported by Unoosa, the DOST-PCIEERD said in a news release.

Pardorla pointed out in the interview that the space program had already achieved milestones since its conception in 2003, such as the Young Engineering Satellite (YES) 2 international project and 14 PhD degrees and 60 master degrees.

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