I can’t believe it's week 9 already! I feel like I first walked past the doors of the big blue building into the core lecture hall (CLH) a few days ago. Time flies in SSP. 

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With applauds the participants stood in the CLH as a team answering every question that was hurled at them. The evening came to a close with a fabulous reception, where the participants engaged with the spectators of the presentations and explained to them their experiences.

The next day, the closing ceremony was held in Leiden. The proud 135 received their certificates from the Program Director Omar Hatamleh and ISU President Walter Peeters. The closing ceremony was also live casted on the internet. With friends and family watching from all over the world, the participants finally became part of the ISU (officially!). The participants also received their ISU pin on this day.

TFfTLr64Qcf7sDS7URwbwOqdXH XW7ZLxExyk w151USnntFChGg02qzlaC 2hmJLuF4zprwNbfFqqQtZNVbnaKtVweeEy7oGQn en3484K6vOochEJf6LPaIfr0fTJWBKMyiGTX Our very own Thomas Wijnen, received the SSP18 academic award of the year. This was a definite highlight!

To commemorate the participants achievements over the summer, the closing ceremony was followed by a lively evening of fun, laughter and dance. x7u0GohwycjNPCgcQVyNieaUc9tq6e 0z4g25pM3PcKLsGSHxzsP8JiZrWPEYBVZ27G0jIIidfCjs zubkftXw0H1bKD zkfhUmtG4otL7rlQ1Msyz3cj9HhsdT1DQCTNgEcxjs

The saddest part of the program was the day after the closing ceremony. The participants were homebound. Some left in tears, while others laughed it off saying they will meet again. With plans of trips to 35 countries, the participants left, hoping to meet their SSP family in this small world.

Here’s to the months that turned into years and to the friends that turned into family. Welcome to the Space mafia, SSP18!