The Star Trek Experience: Welcome to Starfleet Academy

star-trek-splash-logo-6Good morning! Are you a Star Trek Fan? I am. I watched every single episode when they first aired in 1966. My teen imagination couldn’t get enough of the world of the future, and when the series was cancelled, I watched the reruns religiously. My husband got interested in Star Trek at university watching those reruns, and today, he’s as big a fan as they come. We had a Star Trek themed party for him when he turned 60.12204621_1027354927286026_1232929330_n

Currently, the Museum of Aviation in Ottawa, Ontario, has a Star Trek experience on the go. According to the website information, “The Starfleet Academy Experience provides cadet recruits with an opportunity to experience a “career day” at the Academy. In an immersive environment, recruits try out a number of activities to test their potential to train for careers as Medical Officers, Science Officers, Communications specialists, even Commanders. The experience is enriched with the actual science behind the science fiction as the participants learn about emerging technologies such as a functional tricorder, NASA’s warp drive theory, and the latest experiments with phasers and teleporters.”

I was lucky enough to attend “Starfleet Academy Career Day on Saturday. The tickets aren’t expensive and you get to visit the Aviation Museum as well–Two experiences for the price of one.

The first thing we saw as we entered the exhibit was a model of the Enterprise with an image of the Canadian flag superimposed on it. Enterprise

The next thing we saw was a complete timeline for the original Star Trek series and its many characters, starting with World War III and Zefram Cochrane, ending with the defeat of the Borg and Captain Janeway’s return to Earth. Timeline

Once inside the main exhibit, you have the opportunity to try various interactive devices. You can scan a Klingon and determine his treatment in Sick Bay. Perhaps you’d rather learn to speak Klingon if Communications appeal to you. If you like, you can even use technology to make an image of yourself as a alien.

Here are replicas of various medical instruments used on the show. What I particularly enjoyed was learning about the devices we have today that were born out of Gene Roddenberry’s imagination. Hyposprays have been used successfully to deliver mass vaccines.Medical EquipmentAs we moved through the exhibit, we were able to take short quizzes. Our answers determined what we’d be best suited for–they also tested your knowledge of the series, but many were hypothetical–what if–questions. You selected the most likely answer for you. Here John struggles to complete the Kobayashi Maru scenario. He managed to rescue 150 of the 300 people aTaking the testboard before the Klingons destroyed the Enterprise. I only managed to save 20 before I met the same fate.

Throughout the exhibit, there were star maps, uniforms worn by the cast in various series. I was most surprised by how thin the female cast members must’ve been. Galaxy map

The displays included posters, like this map of the Beta Quadrant as well as models of ships and shuttle crafts used in filming. filming models

You could even use the Transporter. They send you a short video of yourself getting your molecules scrambled. transporterI got to use the ship’s phasers to eliminate the enemy–brought down 33 out of 50 potential threats.  Very proud of myself since I don’t usually do that well at that kind of thing.

By far the most impressive aspect of the exhibit is the Bridge.



When all was said and done, we got our results. John, sitting in the Captain’s chair, would make a fine Science or Tactical officer, but guess what? I was given the choice of Engineering or Command. Damn, that chair feels mighty good!

My Star Trek experience isn’t over yet. At the beginning of September, I’m going to Fan Expo where I hope to meet Captain Kirk himself–he’s older, wiser, heavier, but aren’t we all? 

My love of Star Trek gave me the idea for one of my novels.Just For The Weekend starts at a Sci-fi convention.  I plan to write a follow-up when I get back and use my experiences as part of the plot.

Well, that’s it for now. As Mr. Spock would say, “Live long and prosper!”


4 thoughts on “The Star Trek Experience: Welcome to Starfleet Academy

  1. I KNEW there was a reason I want to go back to Ottowa during the summer months!! Glad you had a great time Captain…;) That timeline would be AWESOME to see!

    In my own sci-fi rom series, I used the DS9 space station as a guide.

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