Local student earns fellowship with Dragon Kim Foundation

Press release

News release  

Stevenson Ranch resident Brandon Chang, a sophomore at West Ranch High School, has been named a member of the 2024 Fellowship Class of the Orange County-based nonprofit Dragon Kim Foundation, a social entrepreneurship incubator for high school youth. 

He will receive three weekends of leadership training and hands-on guidance from mentors, plus a grant of up to $5,000 from the foundation to implement a social service project in his local community this summer. 

Chang’s organization “GalaxSea Explorers” is designed to educate youth in third through eighth grades about space and astronomy through hands-on experiments and creative design projects. He hopes to address the lack of exposure to space in the standard school curriculum, inspiring future astronauts and aerospace engineers who otherwise may not have this introductory experience. 

He plans to culminate each camp with a trip to a major space agency, where the students will tour and give presentations of their projects. After the summer camp, he plans to write and publish a workbook for teachers, compiling experiments, lesson plans, and his personal experience with teaching space, helping educators implement similar activities into their own classrooms. 

“I am beyond excited to have been selected as a member of the 2024 fellowship class and can’t wait to develop my project to make a positive impact on underserved communities that don’t have access to this type of education,” Chang said in a news release. “Ultimately, I just want to spread my love for space by making sure younger students have the same opportunity I was given.” 

The leadership training is provided for free to each Dragon fellow. At the end of the program, the top three teams will present their projects at the annual Dragon Challenge. One team will win additional funding to continue their project. 

“We congratulate Brandon and sincerely thank all of the students who took their time to submit their wonderfully creative entries to the 2024 Dragon Kim Fellowship Program,” Dragon Kim Foundation board Chairman Daniel Kim said in the release. “We thank our sponsors, mentors and other supporters for their belief in our program.” 

The fellowship was founded in 2015 in honor of the late Dragon Kim, a young musician, athlete and scholar who wanted to help others. For more information, visit dragonkimfoundation.org. 

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