Several young science, technology, engineering and mathematics professionals entering the workforce right now are likely to have been motivated to enter those fields by the High school students United with NASA to Create Hardware (HUNCH) Program. Looking back to highlight the 10th year of the program, Public Affairs Officer Lori Meggs interviews Bob Zeek, HUNCH co-founder, and Mike Evans, drafting teacher at the Huntsville Center for Technology, in the Payload Operations Integration Center at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.
HUNCH is an instructional partnership between NASA, high school and intermediate/middle school students to build cost-effective hardware and soft goods both for use on the International Space Station and for training of NASA astronauts and flight controllers.
“It gives [trainees] a hands-on opportunity to see what they’re really working with in space,” says Zeek, describing the benefit of the training hardware and soft goods. The program “allows students to get out of a textbook and work on the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) activities, you know, the engineering skill sets that they need to be successful later in life,” says Evans.
The popularity of HUNCH has grown to include 53 schools across 18 different states. Curriculum areas include computer electronics, 3-D printing for rapid prototype development, machine shop and welding. Schools can get involved through online application on the HUNCH website.
Watch the full Space Station Live broadcast weekdays on NASA TV at 10 a.m. CDT.