NASA engineer speaks at Honors Program Spring Banquet


For Immediate Release
April 11, 2001

For more information contact:

Tom Craig, Director of Media and Community Relations
915-674-2692

Wendy Waller, Media Relations Specialist
(915) 674-2696

Mark Schmalz of the NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston addressed students and faculty of Abilene Christian University's Honors Program at their annual dinner Tuesday.

Schmalz is a senior systems engineer for NASA and is project manager for the Space-to-Space Communications System. He presented a slide show of various NASA projects and talked about various aspects of his job.

"Sometimes you don't know what you're going to find, and sometimes it's totally separate from what you went looking for," Schmalz said of space exploration.

Schmalz also encouraged students to consider studying engineering.

"The Americans turn out 10 lawyers for every engineer," Schmalz said. "The Japanese are just the opposite of that."

Dr. Chris Willerton, professor of English and director of the Honors Progam, said, "Space travel hasn't lost its glamour. Look at all the folks who crowded around Dyess a few weeks ago for a look at the space shuttle. We bring in NASA speakers every few years because their slides are fascinating to the whole range of honors students and teachers. The future engineers, the poets, the pre-meds, the accountants -- everybody gets excited. For the space of half an hour, we all want to be astronauts."

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Last update: April 11, 2001
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