School of Computer Science and Mathematics

Space Mission and Operations Certificate


This certification program will provide students with a credential that is in high demand in many different disciplines/industries.  The program provides a well-rounded suite of skills including a fundamental understanding of the space environment and orbital dynamics; the role space systems play in our everyday lives including economics, environmental monitoring, and national security; and pragmatic skills involved in the development and operations of space systems.

Students will gain real-world experience through experiential learning at the Homestead Space Operations Complex at Chippewa County International Airport and have opportunities for co-op and internship positions with leading employers in the space industry.  Each class is taught by a combination of LSSU faculty and visiting scholars from the space industry.


  • Demonstrate proficiency in space mission operations and control

  • Explain the fundamentals of Orbital Mechanics

  • Synthesize the planning, execution, and support requirements for real-time space mission operations

  • Demonstrate effectiveness as a team member


“Like many programs at Lake State, I think the Space Certificate program sets itself apart from others like it by being hands on. You have many opportunities throughout the program to do what you learn, whether it be satellite communication or mission operations. I believe that is invaluable experience, especially for the space industry.”

- Riley Sponseller, Student

“I really enjoyed the Satellite Communications lab. Students split up into two teams: the Mission Operations Center (MOC) and the Antenna Site. These teams worked in tandem to communicate with and record real satellite communications and data transmitted to earth. I had fun as the MOC commander, who was responsible for overseeing the MOC team and at the Antenna Site. I’d issue commands to the MOC team, confirm targets and operations, and any conflicts for the good of the mission. Waiting for the satellite pass windows to show up could be a little slow, but when the window opened it was a lot of fast communication and coordination between both teams. It went by faster than you think!”

- Bethany Roberts, 2024 Graduate

“The LSSU Space Certificate Program has been instrumental in equipping me with the skills and knowledge necessary to tackle challenges in the space industry and related fields.  Through its comprehensive curriculum and hands-on learning experiences, the program has provided me with a robust foundation in various aspects of space science, technology, and exploration.”

- Madeleine Whip, Student