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FIELD JOURNAL FIELD JOURNAL FIELD JOURNAL FIELD JOURNAL

Ambassador for Mars

by John Moreau

July 21, 1997

Working late at the Space Photography Laboratory tonight, getting ready to go out to a classroom in central Phoenix tomorrow morning. This will be a class of 5th and 6th graders who are going to summer school. Their teacher is an old college friend of mine and he's asked me to come out and talk about the latest information from the Mars Pathfinder and Galileo missions, as well as about planets in general, to his students. This is one of the best parts of my job--talking to and doing fun activities with kids who are interested in space exploration. I'm really looking forward to tomorrow.

It's been pretty busy around Arizona State University since the Pathfinder landing. That day (7/4/97) we had three television station crews in our facility filming NASA Select TV and conducting interviews with people involved with the project and graduate students. As the education/outreach person here for our research group, and since my boss, Dr. Ron Greeley, is out at JPL for the mission this month, I spoke with reporters about the Pathfinder mission. I answered questions about both the spacecraft and Martian geology. Some of the questions were very thought provoking and tough. In addition to television stations, we've had newspaper reporters contacting us these last couple of weeks as well. Each time a new press conference is held at JPL, we tend to get a few "follow-up" calls to clarify information or ask more questions, etc. It's my job to be up to date on how the mission is going and know the answers to their questions. In this way, I guess I'm kind of a "press secretary" for the Mars Pathfinder mission to local newspeople here in Phoenix. It's fun and rewarding.


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