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Kari Fluegel October 28, 1994

RELEASE: 94-071

OUTREACH PROGRAM TARGETS HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS

Johnson Space Center cooperative education students are reaching out to area high school students to relate their personal experiences from school and work, and to encourage young people to become involved in the space program of tomorrow.

The visits to Clear Creek High School, which were conducted this week and will continue on Nov. 3, 4 and 7, are part of the Cooperative Education Program's High School Outreach Program which was established in 1991 to channel high school students into science, mathematics and technology career paths. In past years, JSC's cooperative education students have made presentations to about 7,400 high school students at the LaPorte, Dickinson, Deer Park and South Houston High Schools.

Cooperative education students, or "co-ops," alternate between their college studies and rotations as full-time NASA employees, mixing their education with on-the-job training. Most JSC co-ops are engineering students, but others are studying business, English, science and other fields.

"Because of our similarity in age and status, co-ops are well suited to bridge the gap with high school students," said Rick Francis, one of the co-ops participating in the program.

In the outreach presentations, the co-ops share information on NASA's past and future and relate that to the need for scientists, engineers and mathematicians, as well as to the high school students' current and future course work, Francis said.

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