Karen Hanner
NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif.
May 25, 2010
RELEASE : M10-42
NASA Helps Create Brighter Future for Students in Silicon Valley
MOFFETT FIELD, Calif. – Renewing the spark of curiosity in math and science for students is a top priority for NASA.

In an effort to keep that flame of curiosity burning brightly, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif., is teaming up with the Silicon Valley Education Foundation (SVEF) and the Hispanic Foundation of Silicon Valley (HFSV). This collaboration targets students in underprivileged areas throughout the Bay Area to increase their interest and capabilities in science and math by using the NASA curriculum, “Smart Skies.”

On June 1, 2010, the Ames Exploration Encounter located at NASA’s Ames will host an event that is open to media to kick-off the collaboration by demonstrating the “Smart Skies” software with middle school students, NASA docents, and air traffic controllers from the Federal Aviation Administration. Ron Gonzales, who is the former mayor of San Jose, Calif. and chief executive officer of HFSV, Muhammed Chaudhry chief executive officer of SVEF, and NASA’S Ames Deputy Center Director Lewis S. G. Braxton III will offer their comments on the collaboration.

“We are extremely proud of our success rate in helping students achieve higher math skills. We know that by using the ‘Smart Skies’ software, we will achieve results with these students that will open doors to opportunities they didn’t know existed,” said Chaudhry.

The initial focus of the collaboration is the SVEF's website, “Lessonopoly,” which, will offer lesson plans and access to the educational materials of “Smart Skies,” a standards-based curriculum that teaches students about science and math by providing solutions to air traffic management problems.

"The Hispanic Foundation of Silicon Valley is proud to foster the collaboration with NASA's Ames Research Center and the Silicon Valley Education Foundation to help all children in our community to succeed in school and have a bright future," said Gonzales. “NASA’s Smart Skies software is a fun and challenging way to get kids to learn math and science that can help them pursue their dreams,” he added.

At the June 1 event at NASA’s Ames, a class of students from ACE Academy of San Jose, Calif., whose mission is to help “students who have fallen significantly below grade level,” will demonstrate NASA’s “Smart Skies” application. FAA Air traffic controllers will work with students on the “Smart Skies” application and be available for discussion with the media.

In 2007, NASA and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding to foster the development of students' skills in science, technology, engineering and math. The agencies' initial focus is on a NASA curriculum called "Smart Skies." Smart Skies is an online air traffic control simulator for students in fifth through ninth grades. It offers a fun and exciting way to learn math and skills central to air traffic control while providing multiple modes of problem solving for students who learn in different ways.

Who: NASA’s Ames Deputy Director Lewis S. G. Braxton III, Chief Executive Officer of HFSV Ron Gonzales, and Chief Executive Officer of SVEF Muhammed Chaudhry will discuss the collaboration.

What: Collaboration between NASA’s Ames Research Center, HFSV, and SVEF to heighten youth’s interest in science, technology, engineering and math.

When: 12 p.m. PDT Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Where: NASA’s Ames Exploration Encounter is located in Building N226, De France Avenue. To reach NASA’s Ames, take U.S. Highway 101 to the Moffett Field, NASA Parkway exit and drive east on Moffett Boulevard towards the main gate and bear right into the parking lot.

NOTE: News media interested in attending the event must contact Karen Hanner at (650) 604-4034 by May 30, 2010 to make arrangements.

For more information about the Hispanic Foundation of Silicon Valley, visit:

For more information about the Silicon Valley Education Foundation, visit:

For more information about “Smart Skies,” visit:

To view a video about “Smart Skies,” visit:

For more information about NASA’s Ames Research Center, visit:


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