City of Long Beach 
Public Information Office
411 W. Ocean Blvd, 
Long Beach, CA 90802

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEPress Release # 82222-3
City Launches Space Beach Teacher Externship Program in Collaboration with Long Beach Unified School District
Eli Romero
Special Projects Officer
Economic Development - Pacific Gateway

The City of Long Beach, in partnership with the Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD), recently launched its Space Beach Teacher Externship Program, a professional development program for K-12 educators to create streamlined, easy-to-navigate career pathways for students interested in aerospace and related industries.

“The aerospace sector is a huge part of our city and our local economy,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “It’s great to see this program continue expanding opportunities for our students and educators to partner with from these fantastic Long Beach companies.”

The Space Beach Teacher Externship Program kicked off on Aug. 9 with a three-day workshop held across multiple employer sites in Long Beach including special visits to Boeing, Relativity Space, Rocket Lab, SpinLaunch and Virgin Orbit. There were 16 LBUSD educators selected to collaborate with Pacific Gateway and Long Beach aerospace employers to participate in the program and raise awareness of aerospace industry knowledge and trends. This three-day opportunity provided teachers with extended exposure to aerospace manufacturing, rocket launch trends, work environments and types of careers their students may want to pursue in aerospace. Teachers participated in workshops with industry leaders, engaged in discussions on workforce and existing needs, and had the opportunity to gain hands-on experience that will help educators contextualize the academic content they teach.

"The Space Beach Teacher Externship Program is an opportunity for high school teachers to connect with the aerospace industry,” said LBUSD Assistant Director of Career Pathway Development Renee Shipman. “Through this collaboration, teachers are able to see how skills taught in the classroom are applied in real-world settings."

The Space Beach Techer Externship Program is part of a broader Space Beach workforce development initiative, led by the City’s workforce bureau, Pacific Gateway Workforce Innovation Network, that engages youth, employers and educators in work-based learning activities such as speaker series, field trips, student competitions, mentorship, internships and long-term employment placements in the aerospace industry.

This Program is the first step in creating a streamlined, easy-to-navigate career pathway in aerospace that engages youth, employers and educators through teacher externships, work-based learning activities, internships and, in the future, employment placements. Through this initial investment, educators from LBUSD’s Cabrillo High School, California Academy of Math and Science (CAMS) and Sato Academy will collaborate with Pacific Gateway and employers to develop a multi-disciplinary, cross-career academy project-based learning activity aligned with STEM and college-based standards, leading to a youth STEM/aerospace conference to be coordinated in 2023.

By investing in new and existing networks of organizations that provide mentorship and jobs for youth, the Space Beach Program aligns with Goal 4 of the Racial Equity and Reconciliation Initiative, which prioritizes improved health and wellness in the City by eliminating social and economic disparities in communities most impacted by racism.  The program also supports goals three and four of the Strategic Plan for Youth and Emerging Adults, which centers around academic and job training needs of youth, and commits to create inclusive and supportive spaces for young people, respectively.

This program is made possible in part by the Long Beach Recovery Act (LB Recovery Act), a plan to fund economic and public health initiatives for residents, workers, and businesses critically impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Additional information about the Long Beach Recovery Act is available at

In May, the Department of Economic Development, Pacific Gateway received a $1.6 million grant from the Conrad N. Hilton to support the coordination of activities that will engage youth disconnected from work or school in education completion and aerospace-related training activities. 

About the City of Long Beach  
Home to approximately 470,000 people, the multiple award-winning and innovative City of Long Beach offers all the world-class amenities of a large metropolitan city while maintaining a strong sense of individual and diverse neighborhoods nestled together along the California coast. As a full-service charter city, Long Beach is home to the Queen Mary, Aquarium of the Pacific, several museums and theaters, a highly-rated school district, Long Beach Airport, the Port of Long Beach, as well as many award-winning City departments such as Health and Human Services; Parks, Recreation and Marine; Development Services; Public Works and more. The City also has a highly respected university and city college, two historic ranchos, five hospitals, 12 libraries, five golf courses, 169 parks, miles of beaches, marinas, bike paths and a Bike Share program. 

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