Salt Lake Community College student Katlynne Bills has been selected to travel to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory Center this spring to participate in the NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars project (NCAS). Bills was selected as one of 216 community college students from across the U.S. to be part of NCAS.
“NCAS not only inspires community college students to advance in STEM fields, but it also opens doors for future careers at NASA,” said Tania B. Davis, manager of the Minority University Research and Education Project (MUREP). “NCAS has a legacy of alumni moving from NASA internships to and ultimately entering the NASA workforce. It is rewarding to see the progression of a student from NCAS participant to NASA colleague.”
The five-week scholars program culminates with a four-day on-site event at Jet Propulsion Laboratory and offers students the opportunity to interact with NASA engineers and others as they learn more about careers in science and engineering. While at NASA, students form teams and establish fictional companies interested in Mars exploration. Each team is responsible for developing and testing a prototype rover, forming a company infrastructure, managing a budget, and developing communications and outreach.
The on-site experience at NASA includes a tour of facilities and briefings by NASA subject matter experts. NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars is a project funded in part by MUREP, which is committed to the recruitment of underrepresented and underserved students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to sustain a diverse workforce. With this project, NASA continues the agency’s tradition of investing in the nation’s educational programs. It is directly tied to the agency's major education goal of attracting and retaining students in STEM disciplines critical to NASA’s future missions, which include missions to Mars and beyond. For additional information, please contact National Community College Aerospace Scholars by email atJSC-NCAS@mail.nasa.gov or by phone at 281-483-0493.
Salt Lake Community College is an accredited, student-focused, comprehensive community college meeting the diverse needs of the Salt Lake community. Home to more than 60,000 students each year, the College is Utah’s leading provider of workforce development programs. SLCC is also the largest supplier of transfer students to Utah’s four-year institutions and a perennial Top 10 college nationally for total associate degrees awarded. The College is the sole provider of applied technology courses in the Salt Lake area, with multiple locations, an eCampus, and nearly 1,000 continuing education sites located throughout the Salt Lake Valley. Personal attention from an excellent faculty is paramount at the College, which maintains an average class size of 20.