Mars "Virtual" Teacher Training Conference
The Sights & Impressions of those in Attendance
Summary of 2pm Panel on Future Exploration
Noel Hinners, Lockheed Martin
by Patricia D.Cook- Teacher from South Carolina
We would not be here today to celebrate the anniversary if Viking
had not been successful. Team work was the key. There was sufficient
money to design properly. The youth of our country needs to be involved
in these future projects .Mars Surveyor program has inadequate funding.
The public needs to be interested in this project. This can be
accomplished through education.
Lucas Layton and Jason Mantossian from the Marshall Fundamental
Secondary School in Pasadena CA were introduced. Joe Spence, from
the NASA GSFC Academy was also introduced. They will give a student's
perspective. Scientists Mark Lupisella, NASA Lead Ground System
Engineer and Chris McKay, NASA Ames Research Scientist were also on the
panel Roald Z. Sagdeev, Director of the East West Space Sciences
Center, U. Of MD. Will give an international perspective on Mars
Lucas Layton: Recently graduated from high school (English major)
. Read his reaction to the Mars Symposium.
Jason Mattossian: "The gap between Humanities and Sciences is
too large. It is important to get different philosophies on all the
issues. NASA is trying to educate young children but we must educate the
masses in order to get support."
Q&A: Bonnie Bracey:" How do we change policy? Don't school
districts know that maybe NASA can write better curriculum?"
Jason:Vote for me in 25 years and I'll change that!
Joseph Spence: " When we think about a vision there are two
aspects-internal and external. We need to free the human spirit. My
generation will be faced with formulating a vision. We must be moving
forward or we will decay.
Mark Lupisella: " My perspective on Mars is a little different.
Inspiration is natures way of securing the future. What does it lead to?
The Rover can be a transport vehicle for humans and a possible habitat.
- Dreams- Give us hope and purpose. Mars is unique and exotic and can
be given to our children.
- Knowledge- Planetary science is fairly new.
- The Future- A network of power stations on Mars to recharge the
"What do we do if we find life on Mars? Would the life forms have
rights? We need to make policies now and have dialogue about these
Q: As the panelists have embarked on their careers have they considered
the engineers and scientists?
Mark: I am an engineer.
Q: Don't you think we should have more specialized schools which
emphasize mathematics and sciences?
Jason: If your school doesn't have a strong math program, how can
we have more scientists . It all goes back to education.
James: We are going to have to be able to communicate. That's
where I'm coming from.
Jason: We need people with initiative to start these schools.
Q: Can we grow a weed on Mars? Is there breathable air there?. Is it
virtual or is it real? I am a chemistry teacher searching for ways to
James: The love for learning needs to be instilled. Children are
naturally inquisitive....Sometimes students can be drilled so hard that
the love for learning goes right out of you...
Chris McKay: "This is the 20th Anniversary. of Viking. I'd like to
thank all the scientists who had a part of that. (Applause)
Individuals do matter. Never let the system beat you down. Anything worth
doing is hard. All the easy stuff was done by our ancestors. That's all
I've got to offer after 20 year so doing this.
Roald Sagdeev: I was impressed by what Noel said. How did Viking
work? I hope that future missions to Mars will have Russians on board.
I will show you a computer simulation. (SIMULATION OF MARS ORBITER)
Oh...weeds will grow on Mars, eventually!!"
YES! (From audience member)
Q: Are Russian students motivated by space exploration?
Roald: It was in the beginning yes, but due to economic conditions
it has changed. Now students ask for letters of recommendation from me to
go to business schools instead of studying sciences.
Mr. Young:"Thank you all for coming"
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