The US Space Force (USSF) has selected the University of Colorado (CU) for its University Partnership Program (UPP).

As a first step of defining this partnership, the USSF and CU signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) during an event on 20 August.

The signing took place at UC Colorado Springs campus in the presence of US Space Operations vice-chief general David Thompson and University of Colorado president Todd Saliman.

Thompson said: “The state of Colorado and community of Colorado Springs have long been key members and supporters of the national security space enterprise, so it’s fitting for the space force to establish a formal partnership between the University of Colorado and the space force.”

Under the partnership, the USSF will work with CU and each university to outline specific implementation milestones. This will help the service to meet the programme’s four main goals.

These goals include creating opportunities for advanced research, advanced academic degrees, and workforce, as well as to identify and pursue research areas of mutual interest.

The remaining two include creating scholarship, internship and mentorship opportunities for university students as well as to recruit and develop diverse officer and civilian guardians with a special focus on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

Furthermore, the partnership also highlights focus on Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) scholarships.

Saliman said: “Given Colorado’s aerospace and defence economy, the largest per capita in the nation, and CU’s broad array of related workforce and research capabilities, we’re excited to contribute to space force’s workforce and help advance our nation’s aerospace and national security capabilities.”

The CU is the second university in the UPP programme, following the University of North Dakota.

According to USSF, nine other additional universities are on track to join the partnership in FY-2021.

Recently, the USSF officially established the second field command that will be responsible for developing and procuring resilient space capabilities for troops.