Red Rocks Community College Students Visit Johnson Space Center

Community college students participate in a rover activity during the 2015 NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars (NCAS) workshop. Image Credit: NASA/Robert Markowitz

Community college students participate in a rover activity during the 2015 NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars (NCAS) workshop. Image Credit: NASA/Robert Markowitz

May 24, 2016 – Students from Red Rocks Community College in Lakewood, Colorado, are among those selected to travel to NASA’s Johnson Space Center May 22 – 25 to participate in the NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars (NCAS) project.

The five-week scholars program began with a series of online lessons and culminates with a four-day on-site event that offers students the opportunity to interact with NASA scientists and engineers. While at NASA, students form teams and establish mock companies interested in Mars exploration. Each team is responsible for developing and testing a prototype rover, forming a company infrastructure, managing a budget, and developing communications and outreach.

The on-site experience at NASA also includes a tour of facilities and briefings by NASA subject matter experts. A total of 216 community college students have been selected from across the country to participate in workshops at NASA centers near them.

Students from the following schools will be participating in the Johnson Space Center onsite workshop May 22- 25:

Alvin Community College in Alvin, Texas
Amarillo College in Amarillo, Texas
Austin Community College in Austin, Texas
Bakersfield College in Bakersfield, California
Blinn College in Brenham, Texas
Brookhaven College in Farmers Branch, Texas
Coastal Bend College in Beeville, Texas
College of the Mainland in Texas City, Texas
College of the Sequoias in Visalia, California
College of Southern Nevada in Henderson, Nevada
East Central Community College in Decatur, Mississippi
El Paso Community College in El Paso, Texas
Galveston College in Galveston, Texas
Houston Community College in Houston, Texas
Howard College in Big Spring, Texas
Mesa Community College in Mesa, Arizona
Midland College in Midland, Texas
Pearl River Community College in Poplarville, Mississippi
Red Rocks Community College in Lakewood, Colorado
Richland Community College in Decatur, Illinois
San Jacinto College in Pasadena, Texas
Sierra College in Rocklin, California
South Plains College in Levelland, Texas
South Texas College in McAllen, Texas
Tarrant County College in Fort Worth, Texas

NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars is a project funded in part by the Minority University Research and Education Program, or MUREP, which is committed to the recruitment of underrepresented and underserved students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to sustain a diverse workforce.

With this project, NASA continues the agency’s tradition of investing in the nation’s educational programs. It is directly tied to the agency’s major education goal of attracting and retaining students in STEM disciplines critical to NASA’s future missions, which include missions to Mars and beyond.

Tania B. Davis, Minority University Research and Education Project (MUREP) Manager, said, “NCAS not only inspires community college students to advance in STEM fields, but it also opens doors for future careers at NASA.”

“NCAS has a legacy of alumni moving from NASA internships to and ultimately entering the NASA workforce. It is rewarding to see the progression of a student from NCAS participant to NASA colleague,” Davis said.