LIGHTHOUSE VISIONS Information ‐ 2016
Deadline for application April 1, 2016

The St. Louis Lighthouse of the Blind, in conjunction with Space Camp for Interested Visually Impaired Students (SCIVIS), is pleased to renew a scholarship opportunity to attend Space Camp®/SCIVIS. This program, called Lighthouse Visions, is a scholarship program designed to provide students with culturally unique and diverse backgrounds, who also have a documented visual impairment, an opportunity to attend Space Camp® with a paid full tuition and partial or full travel expenses.

Since 1990, over 3500 students from the U. S. and many foreign countries have attended SCIVIS. For many of those students it has been the highlight of their middle and high school years. Comments like, “this is the best week of my school year” and “at SCIVIS I don’t have to explain my visual impairment to people because everyone there gets it”, are heard all the time.

At the SCIVIS 2015 program, 199 students attended from 23 U. S. states, Greece, Ireland, Australia, St. Lucia, United Kingdom, Ecuador, and Canada.

The St. Louis Lighthouse for the Blind has been the sponsor of dozens of students from Missouri to SCIVIS for many years. It is their desire to have unique students placed on the Lighthouse teams to enrich their lives. The focus of this scholarship is to pull together those students from around the world, who are very different from each other.

SCIVIS is a special week at Space Camp®. It is a 6-day/night educational adventure involving curriculum in space science, aviation, teamwork, and simulated space and aviation missions. All adaptations are available to students during their “Week in Space”, i.e. Braille, large print, electronic magnification, etc.

Rules & Regulations

  1. Students who are blind or visually impaired may apply from the age of 10 to 18 years of age. Students must provide documentation of current enrollment. University students are not eligible. Students who are older than 18 who are enrolled in high school are eligible with proper documentation. If younger students wish to attend this should not be their first trip away from home or their first camp experience. Younger children, ages 10-12, should have an accompanying chaperone.
  2. Students must provide documentation from a medical doctor, preferably an optometrist or an ophthalmologist, the cause of the blindness or low vision and the current visual functioning, i.e. 20/200, total blindness, LP, etc. This report must be clearly legible and contain contact information for the medical professional so the report can be verified. Please include an email address or phone number for the medical professional so we may verify this information, if needed.
  3. Students are eligible from any state or country.
  4. Students MUST have the ability to read, speak, and understand English. Fluency is required! The need to quickly learn new technology will be required. English Braille, both contracted and uncontracted, large print, and electronic magnification are readily available.
  5. Students should have an interest in math and science to participate in this program. Information about Space Camp for Interested Visually Impaired Students (SCIVIS). Information about Space Camp® in general.
  6. Students attending from the upper grades, ages 15-18, will have the option to SCUBA dive in 24-foot Underwater Astronaut Trainer. Also included in the activities is climbing a 49-foot rock wall and other high ropes elements. Please do not apply if you are not willing to try new things.
  7. The focus of this scholarship is to share your unique culture and diversity with the students attending the SCIVIS program. A short presentation (2-3 minutes) at opening ceremonies is required.
  8. All travel will be coordinated through a travel agency in the U. S. Chaperones accompanying students may or may not be eligible for partial funding. Chaperones cannot be parents and must be professional educators who have had a history working with the applicant. Accompanying chaperones are not a requirement.
  9. The selection committee will meet in early 2016 and applicants will be notified before the end of April 2016 to allow ample time for passport and visa applications, if needed.

The Lighthouse Visions Scholarship provides a unique opportunity to children who are blind and visually impaired to attend an amazing week.

Through the generosity of the St. Louis Lighthouse for Blind we will be selecting approximately 20 students to attend Space Camp® in Huntsville, AL from Sept. 24-29, 2016. To insure your best chance for selection to the Lighthouse Visions Team please complete the following:

  1. Deadline for application April 1, 2016
    Lighthouse Visions Application completely filled out.
  2. Essay 1 (part of application #1 above) - Please write no less than 2000 characters detailing where you live, where you go to school, define your cultural identity (what makes you unique and a candidate for this program). NOTE: this essay will be the primary document to determine your selection for the Lighthouse Visions Team (pictures may be included).
  3. Essay 2 (part of application #1 above) - write no less than 2000 characters detailing your visual condition or why you do not see well. In living with this condition, please share some of the positive and negative aspects that you encounter during a regular day at home and at school.
  4. Documentation to confirm your enrollment in an educational program as stated in #1 Rules and Regulations above.
  5. Medical documentation concerning your visual condition as stated in #2 Rules & Regulations above.

If you are selected to the Lighthouse Visions Team you will be notified around April 1, 2016. At that time you will have to begin organizing your trip to Huntsville, Alabama, USA. Additional forms for travel, i.e. passport and visas may be needed. These are the responsibility of the application and not Space Camp, SCIVIS or the St. Louis Lighthouse for the Blind. On-line registration for the actual program will need to be completed. All cost involving your arrival to the program will be covered (tuition, airport transportation, early arrival and late departure fees). Luggage cost will be the responsibility of the student. Transportation cost, in most instances, will be dealt with on an individual basis. A contracted travel agency will assist you with finding the most cost-effective route to Huntsville. Every effort will be made to provide as much funding as possible for air fares. Please be prepared for fundraising efforts to complete the travel cost if tickets are expensive in your part of the world.NOTE: This program will not assist with travel to other locations in the U. S. during your trip to Alabama, i.e. sightseeing, family, etc. In most cases, visas are specific to certain kinds of travel and cannot be changed.

Once airfares are purchased you are obligated to attend the program. Failure to do so will result not only in a missed opportunity for you but also a child who could have attended in your place.

Good luck and we hope to hear from you soon!