Jan. 26, 2000
Students from across the nation will be able to 'chat' via the Internet with at least nine NASA African-American professionals during Black History Month.
During the chats, students will be able to use computers to direct questions
and receive "live" answers from African Americans who will describe their
roles in and contributions to the space program. The chat sessions will
begin on Thurs., Feb. 3, at 1:00 p.m. PST, and are scheduled throughout
the month on NASA's Quest website:
"When I was a kid in the southeast Bronx, also known as Fort Apache, I didn't know that the kind of job I now have existed, and I didn't know that there was any possibility I could do that job," said Dr. Patricia Cowings, a research psychologist at NASA's Ames Research Center, Silicon Valley, CA.
Her chat session is scheduled to begin at 11:00 a.m. PST, Wed., Feb. 9. "I'm going to give kids the message that they can do those jobs, and that it's important to follow your dreams," Cowings added.
"NASA Quest's annual series of Black History Month chats offers K-12 students and the general public an opportunity to interact with various African American men and women who support NASA's mission and goals," said Oran Cox, who organized the chat series at NASA Ames. "We believe this exchange is significant in providing role models for young people and will help in reaching populations historically underrepresented in science, engineering and technology fields."
Scheduled NASA participants include two aerospace engineers, an electronics engineer, a biomedical engineer, a nutritionist, a computer scientist, a psychologist, a chemist and a physicist. Cox expects that more sessions will be added throughout the month. First-come, first-served pre-registration via the Internet is required in order for students to participate in the chat sessions. Other people can observe the conversations without registering.
"We design and build custom-made lasers to investigate the makeup of the atmosphere," said Julie Williams-Bryd, an aerospace engineer from NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA. She will take part in a two-day "forum," that will begin on Tues., Feb. 8 at 8 a.m. PST.
An Internet forum is a chat room that remains open 24 hours a day to receive queries, but responses to the typed questions may not be "live."
Thurs., Feb. 3, 1:00 p.m. PST
Tues., Feb. 8 through Thurs., Feb. 10, two-day forum begins 8:00 a.m.
Tues., Feb. 8, 9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. PST
Wed., Feb. 9, 11:00 a.m. PST
Wed., Feb. 16, 11:00 a.m. PST
Thurs., Feb. 17, 10:00 a.m. PST
Wed., Feb. 23, 11:00 a.m. PST
Thurs., Feb. 24, 9:00 a.m. PST
Thurs., Feb. 24, 10:00 a.m. PST
Please check Quest website for more information: http://quest.nasa.gov/qchats/special/mlk00/