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Howard University Administrators Visit Goddard
06.12.09
 
Howard President Dr. Sidney Ribeau (left) and astronaut John Grunsfeld Howard University President Dr. Sidney Ribeau shakes hands with astronaut John Grunsfeld, who served as a mission specialist on the shuttle Atlantis mission (STS-125) to the Hubble Space Telescope last month. Goddard Center Director Rob Strain and STS-125 Commander Scott Altman are visible in the background. Credit: NASA/Chris Gunn
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Howard University President Dr. Sidney Ribeau and other university officials met with Goddard Center Director Rob Strain and members of his senior staff on June 10 to discuss current and potential partnerships between the two institutions.

The meeting between Strain and Ribeau was triggered by a recent NASA grant award of $5 million to Howard University to help fund research of atmospheric phenomena related to pollutants. Dr. Aprille Ericsson, a Goddard instrument manager and member of Howard’s Board of Trustees, helped orchestrate the event.

The connections are strong between NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., and Howard University in Washington, D.C. In addition to cooperation on atmospheric research and other fields, more than 40 Howard alumni work at Goddard, and some center employees serve as adjunct professors at Howard.

For example, Dr. Franco Einaudi, director of Goddard’s Earth Sciences Division, has ensured a strong connection between Goddard researchers at Howard’s Beltsville, Md., campus over the past two decades.

The NASA University Research Center at Howard University Beltsville Center for Climate System Observation trains students from all over the world. Strain, Deputy Center Director Laurie Leshin and other Goddard managers and scientists visited the Beltsville campus as part of the June 10 meeting.

Looking toward the future, Ribeau and Strain discussed cross-discipline partnerships to draw diverse, young workers to Goddard and provide a catalyst that moves Howard toward its defined vision of one of America’s top 50 research universities.

“We are in each other’s backyards,” Strain said. “A strong partnership makes good sense and is supportive of both Goddard and Howard.”

As part of the visit, Howard representatives were able to meet crew members from the shuttle Atlantis mission (STS-125) that repaired and upgraded the Hubble Space Telescope last month.

The image below shows the group of astronauts, Goddard officials and Howard University guests who participated in the June 10 event. Credit: NASA/Chris Gunn

group of astronauts, Goddard officials and Howard University guests
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Left to right:

STS-125 Mission Specialist Mike Good
Dr. Gregory Jenkins, Howard University Department of Physics and Astronomy
STS-125 Mission Specialist Mike Massimino
Goddard Deputy Director for Science and Technology Dr. Laurie Leshin
Goddard Associate Director for Educational Programs Dillard Menchan
STS-125 Mission Specialist John Grunsfeld
STS-125 Mission Specialist Drew Feustel
Goddard Director of Earth Science Division Dr. Franco Einaudi
Howard University Vice President of Research and Compliance Dr. Florence Bonner
Goddard Instrument Manager and Howard University Board of Trustees member Dr. Aprille Ericsson
Dr. Sonya Smith, Goddard/Howard University Fellowship in Atmospheric Science, Mechanical
Director of NASA University Research Center at Howard University, Beltsville Center for Climate System Observation Dr. Everett Joseph
Howard University President Dr. Sidney Ribeau
STS-125 Pilot Greg Johnson (front)
STS-125 Commander Scott Altman (back)
Howard University Senior Executive for Academic Operations Dr. Marian Wilson
Goddard Center Director Rob Strain
STS-125 Mission Specialist Megan McArthur
Dr. Lorraine Fleming, Howard University Center for the Advancement of Engineering Education, Civil
Dennis Andrucyk, Applied Engineering and Technology, Goddard Space Flight Center
Dr. Peter Hilderbrand, Sciences and Exploration Directorate, Goddard Space Flight Center