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Jonas Dino                                                                                                      Feb. 17, 2004

NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif.

Phone: 650/207-3280 or 650/604-9000

Email: jonas.dino@nasa.gov


Release: 04-10AR

NOTE TO EDITORS: Media representatives are invited to cover the visit of NASA Ames Research Center Director G. Scott Hubbard to the Jim Bridger Middle School in North Las Vegas on Feb. 19, 2004 from 9:30 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. Hubbard, a prime architect of NASA's Mars exploration program and a member of the Columbia Accident Investigation Board, will talk to students about their opportunity to participate in the president's bold vision to return to the moon and explore Mars. An astronaut may be joining Hubbard for the school visit. The event will be held in the school's gymnasium. Hubbard, school staff and students will be available after the presentation for interviews. Media interested in arranging interviews, should contact Jonas Dino at 650/207-3280 or jonas.dino@nasa.gov by 4:00 p.m. PST, Feb. 18, 2004. Bridger Middle School is located at 2505 North Bruce Street in North Las Vegas. From Las Vegas go north on North Main Street and continue onto North Las Vegas Blvd, left on Civic Center Drive, left on East Carey Ave. and right on North Bruce Street.

NASA SENIOR OFFICIAL TO SHARE EXPLORATION VISION, INSPIRE STUDENTS

Students at NASA's North Las Vegas Explorer School will soon hear first hand about their opportunity to participate in the president's bold vision for exploring the solar system.

On Feb. 19, 2004, G. Scott Hubbard, director of NASA Ames Research Center, located in California's Silicon Valley, will visit the Jim Bridger Middle School in North Las Vegas, Nev. Hubbard will share his insights on the current Mars rover missions and NASA's new direction for human and robotic exploration. He hopes to inspire the students to pursue careers in science, mathematics and technology so that they can become the nation's space explorers and forward thinkers of tomorrow.

"As NASA moves forward to carry out the president's new vision for space exploration, it is essential that we excite our youth about the thrilling opportunities that are opening up for them," said Hubbard. "NASA is committed to working in partnership with our schools, to create exciting new learning environments. America has always been a nation of explorers, but we can't possibly turn this vision into reality without the enthusiastic involvement of our young people."

Hubbard is well suited to address this topic, having served as NASA's first Mars Exploration program director and as a key architect of NASA's Mars exploration road map. Recently, Hubbard was the sole NASA representative on the Columbia Accident Investigation Board that cited the need for a new national space exploration vision.

"We are extremely excited to have Scott Hubbard visit our school to share what NASA's vision for the future of space exploration holds for our students," said Carol Erbach, assistant principal at Jim Bridger Middle School. "The visit gives us the opportunity to show how we have incorporated the NASA program into our curriculum and how we have used current events to excite students at our Mars yard."

The Jim Bridger Middle School is a part of NASA's Explorer Schools program, a three-year partnership of scientific and engineering adventures to engage students using unique NASA resources and capabilities. The program is designed to give students the foundation and inspiration to pursue careers in science, mathematics and technology.

"I wouldn't be surprised if one of these students becomes the first astronaut to explore Mars," said Donald James, education director at NASA Ames. "Many of NASA's employees, including the agency's astronauts, can trace their desire to work at NASA to a classroom visit by a NASA employee or a field trip to a NASA center or exhibit," said James.

For information about the NASA Explorer Schools program, visit:

http://explorerschools.nasa.gov

For more information about the president's new vision for space exploration visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/missions/solarsystem/bush_vision.html

For information about NASA, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov

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