Astronaut Visit: Ken Bowersox – October 2015

This October, ISSET will be bringing American NASA Astronaut Ken Bowersox to the United Kingdom.


Ken is a NASA Astronaut with experience of five Space Shuttle Missions, two as Commander and a long duration space mission as the Commander of the International Space Station.

An Evening with Ken Bowersox will be taking place on the 15th October in association with our partners ‘Pint of Science’. This event is a chance to come and hear all about space missions with a real NASA astronaut and a former Director of Kennedy Space Center, Jay Honeycutt. The evening will also include some exciting presentations from lecturers at King’s College, London. Professor Steve Harridge will be teaching us about ‘The effect of Space travel on muscles’ and Dr. Julie Keeble will be filling us in on the topic of ‘Student experiments on the International Space Station’. Tickets can be purchased at this link.

Ken will also be leading the Astronaut Leadership Experience Programme in the Lake District as part of his visit. This programme is taking place on 16th – 18th October, 2015. You can sign up here for this programme.


NASA Astronaut Visit – Mike Foale – March 2015

In March 2015, ISSET will be bringing former NASA Astronaut and International Space Station Commander Mike Foale to the United Kingdom once more.

NASA Astronaut Mike Foale at UK School

Mike is the most experienced British born astronaut in the history of human space travel having flown on 6 Space Shuttle missions, a Soyuz and commanded the International Space Stations. He was the first Briton to perform a spacewalk, during which he saved the Hubble Space Telescope.

During his visit, Mike will inspire and motivate people across the UK. He will also lead the Astronaut Leadership Experience Programme in the Lake District 5th – 8th March, 2015 – You can view further details and sign up for this programme at our website.

Astronaut Leadership Experience… Mission Complete

On May 8th 2014, four teams of 10 students aged 17 – 46 made the wise decision to set out on an ALE (Astronaut Leadership Experience) program in the Lake District over 4 days. Conquering mountain peaks, rock climbs, fast flowing ghylls, building zip wires over 60 meter gorges & orienteering their way through the moors.

ALE students were joined by NASA astronaut Mike Foale who helped lead them through their daily outdoor challenges & gave them inspirational mentoring in the class room by night. Here at ALE we are truly honoured to work Mike Foale, who we regard as one of the space industries heroes, having played a crucial role in saving the MIR space station after a collision in orbit.

We look forward to working with him this summer at Kings College London, for Mission Discovery;


ALE student taking the plunge…

If you can achieve this, you really can do anything! Abgalabdi Abdi – Coventry University

The best thing I have ever done! Kyle Collins – Milton Keynes

There is no way my wife & kids would believe I could have done anything like this. Thank you! Andy Nyanyo – Coventry University

With the safe return of every member of all teams, the expeditions have successfully completed their missions. Completing each challenge was a goal, but it was never the priority for these role models, and their efforts to inspire themselves and other students to get outside get active, lead their team and chase their dreams which has already had a profound impact on their lives.

The expedition designed, developed and led by ALE (Astronaut Leadership Experience) has inspired a generation of youth to reach their own great heights, not just in the outdoors but also in education & the work place.

The Astronaut Leadership Experience exposes people to the challenges of human survival similar to exploration on a distant planet. A wilderness environment simulates the physical realities associated with establishing and maintaining a human presence where none existed before. Explorers will learn the leadership, team building and communication skills required to conduct complex missions. The challenging environment will enable the explorers to help each other and work as a team in a truly unique situation.” Ken Ham – NASA Astronaut and Space Shuttle Commander

To sign up to our next available program in the Lake District please visit;

Also check out photo’s from this latest ALE program;

About ALE

When NASA forms an astronaut crew they undertake leadership training in remote & wild areas.

ALE has been constructed by astronauts & astronaut trainers, replicating aspects of an astronaut’s team building training to enable you to undergo similar leadership exercises to a NASA space shuttle crew.

Founded in 2009 by Chris Barber, ALE takes students of all ages on remote wilderness expeditions, teaching them fundamental leadership principals.

ALE uses the outdoors to teach students about responsibility for themselves, their team & their surroundings. It is not something that can be taught over a desk or at your morning meeting. On your ALE course you’ll learn how to make decisions, develop confidence, and work through challenges with your team mates. Overall, you’ll work hard, have fun, and return home with leadership skills to last a lifetime.

ALE schools are instructed by outdoor professionals, leadership experts & ex-NASA astronauts. This creates a strong blend of technical skills, teaching abilities & a large range of personal & professional success. In between the outdoor activities will be fun team building challenges, along with evening leadership classes from the resident astronaut. We believe that the key to successful learning is to enjoy what you’re doing, and this is something our instructors work by every day!

We offer courses for large groups that you can join, as well as tailor made courses just for your group. We expect a lot of work from our students & in return we give you fantastic personal rewards for those who want to learn how to lead.

You can book online or give us a call and a member of our team will be happy to help you get the best out of your ALE course.

The Astronaut Leadership Experience!


This gallery contains 34 photos.

We had a thrilling time last weekend in the Lake District with our ALE explorers! The weekend was fantastic, with incredible displays of leadership, teamwork and bravery by all present. Record breaking British astronaut Michael Foale was on hand with … Continue reading

Life-changing Opportunity to Train like an Astronaut

Astronauts are amongst the most talented and inspiring people in the world. Lynx’s new advertising campaign focuses on the many pros of being an astronaut, opening many an eye to an extraordinary life. So why not take the unique opportunity to train like an astronaut yourself? We can take you on a once-in-a-lifetime experience that does just that.

Lynx’s Astronaut Advertising Campaign

When NASA puts a team of astronauts together for a mission through space, the team are sent to wild and remote locations to work together and enhance their leadership, teambuilding and communication skills. Our Astronaut Leadership Experience is designed by the same people who put together such missions; with thrilling hands-on activities for a weekend of adventure in the Lake District – accompanied by a real NASA astronaut: Shuttle Commander Ken Ham and an astronaut trainer.


You will get to try your hand at:

  • Via Ferrata, the zip-wire challenge and rock-climbing – totally exhilarating and completely safe for beginners
  • Gorge walking
  • Raft building
  • Kayaking
  • Team building and leadership activities.

You’ll also get to meet, work and socialise with NASA astronauts, qualified guides, mountain leaders and fellow explorers.

The Astronaut Leadership Experience is open to students of secondary school age upwards, professionals, teams of colleagues and Duke of Edinburgh participants. We’ve run previous programmes in the Arctic, India and Gobi desert in Mongolia which have all had excellent feedback from all of our participants. Do you want to take on a life-changing challenge?

For more information, please get in touch at or visit our website