THE CHRISTA CORRIGAN MCAULIFFE CENTER FOR EDUCATION AND TEACHING EXCELLENCE Throughout the summer and fall of 1985, Americans were drawn to the preparations for the launch of the spaceship CHALLENGER, their attention captured by the exuberant teacher, Christa Corrigan McAuliffe, who was determined to make the whole world her classroom. The CHALLENGER mission ended in tragedy, and seven outstanding men and women lost their lives. In the period of mourning that followed, many people assuaged their grief by turning to actions that would advance the goals of those who had died. Framingham State College in Framingham, Massachusetts established the Christa Corrigan McAuliffe Center for Education and teaching Excellence in 1986 to honor her life and her commitment to teaching. Christa was a 1970 graduate of Framingham State College, which had its origin as the first state-supported school for teacher education in the United States (1839). In accepting the challenge of space travel, Christa McAuliffe displayed the same intelligence and courage that enabled nineteenth century graduates to succeed in their pioneering work in public schools, in schools for the physically challenged, on the western frontiers, and among the emancipated African Americans after the Civil War. Consistent with the history of the College and Christa's commitment, the mission of the McAuliffe Center is to carry out educational activities and research that will support teachers in their work, improve educational practice, offer students goals and incentives to enhance their development, and strengthen community support for public education. The on-going programs of the McAuliffe Center are the following: the Scholars Program awards seven scholarships each year to academically-qualified students who wish to study at Framingham State College; the Remembrance Program is presented each year to local school children and their teachers in honor of Christa and the CHALLENGER crew; the Superintendent's Lyceum series offers public school superintendents scholarly lectures by Framingham State College faculty; the McAuliffe Exchange Program with Bowie State University in Maryland provides for a cultural exchange with an institution of African-American heritage; workshops and conferences for teachers offer frequent opportunities for professional development; and the McAuliffe Fellows Network Program links the Fellows together and makes their work available to other teachers. In 1989, the McAuliffe Center initiated a series of conferences and recognition ceremonies for Massachusetts teachers who had received awards under the federally-funded Christa McAuliffe Fellowship Program. Through an agreement with the United States Department of Education, these conferences have been extended regionally and then nationally. The McAuliffe Center has also been designated as an archive for teachers' award winning projects, as well as a center for electronic information storage and computer access to information about the McAuliffe Fellows and their work.