Smallsats also offer university students a chance for real-world engineering experience. This article mentions one example, at Montana State University. Students are building Explorer-1 (Prime), repeating the experiment carried on the original Explorer I 50 years ago. A December launch is hoped for.
COMMENT: David Klumpar, director of MSU's Space Science and Engineering Lab, is a Van Allen disciple who, some time before the great physicist's passing, called Van Allen and told him they were planning on repeating his experiment. As David told me the story in 2006, Van Allen's dryly humorous response was, "Well, I hope you don't prove me wrong."