College of Health, Education and Human Development

Astronaut Speaks On Importance of STEM Education

Teachers from the School Districts of Anderson, Oconee, and Pickens counties attend the 2009 STEM Institute. The conference focuses on teaching local educators how to integrate science, technology, engineering and mathematics into lesson plans.
NASA space shuttle astronaut Col. Patrick Forrester speaks to teachers from Anderson, Oconee, and Pickens counties during the 2008 STEM Institute. The conference focuses on teaching local educators how to integrate science, technology, engineering and mathematics into lesson plans.
NASA space shuttle astronaut Col. Patrick Forrester (ret.) came to the Upstate to talk about Integrative Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Teaching and Learning (STEM).  The presentation is free and open to the general public.

Forrester's presentation, "Importance of STEM Education - A View from Space," was part of a $48,900 grant from AdvanceSC to promote Education. The  grant is part of a collaborative effort by Clemson University, Tri-County Technical College, the School Districts of Anderson, Oconee, and Pickens counties, and the Pendleton Region Education Center to enhance STEM teacher education throughout the local school districts.

Another portion of the grant funding was used to hold a three-day institute, August 2 – 4, 2010, for 75 elementary, middle and high school educators in Anderson, Oconee and Pickens counties. Educator learning will focus on integrating the International Technology and Engineering Educators Association standards for technological literacy into existing curricula. Upstate teachers will learn proven concepts on how to establish collaborative projects that will help facilitate standard lesson plans into integrative STEM teaching and learning.

NASA Astronaut Patrick Forrester
Slideshow: NASA Astronaut Patrick Forrester
The presentation is free and open to the general public. It will be held on Monday, August 2, 2010, at the Tri-County Technical College, Pendleton Campus, at 2:30 pm in the Marshall J. Parker Auditorium, Room OC 100.

Forrester was selected as a mission specialist by NASA in May 1996. Initially, he was assigned to duties at the Kennedy Space Center as a member of the astronaut support team, responsible for Shuttle prelaunch vehicle checkout, crew ingress and strap-in, and crew egress after landing. Later in his career, Forrester served as the Shuttle training and on-board crew procedures representative. Forrester flew on STS-105 (2001), STS-117 (2007), and STS-128 (2009). He has logged over 950 hours in space, including four spacewalks totaling 25 hours and 22 minutes.

AdvanceSC concentrates on advancing education to support industry, assisting other economic development organizations to attract and retain industries in Duke Energy's service territory and enhancing the competitive position of manufacturers in Duke Energy’s South Carolina service area.  Company funding is are divided among four programs: Public Assistance; Manufacturing Competitiveness Funds; Education; and Economic Development.  Established as a limited liability company by Duke Energy in 2004, AdvanceSC is funded with profits from the company's Bulk Power Marketing program and is managed by a board of Upstate S.C. leaders. Grant applications and information about AdvanceSC are available on its website at www.advancesc.org.