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26 Members Chosen for NASA Program

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Twenty-six Phi Theta Kappa members have been chosen National Community College Aerospace Scholars.

The National Community College Aerospace Scholars program is sponsored by NASA. The project includes preliminary interactive web-based activities and an onsite experience at a NASA facility.

Community College Aerospace Scholars will visit NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, November 8-10 for a hands-on engineering project.

"We are very proud that Phi Theta Kappa members will again be participating in NASA's learning opportunity," said Phi Theta Kappa Executive Director Dr. Rod Risley. "Congratulations to these fine students. This experience will be incredibly beneficial, no matter what career paths they choose. We also applaud NASA for establishing this program and recognizing the scholarship and leadership potential of community college students."

Only some 20 percent of applicants were chosen for the program, which NASA terms as highly competitive. Selection was based on online lesson scores and applicants' designs for a robotic Mars mission.

"The NASA program has already benefited me in more ways than I could possibly explain," said Mary-Catherine Snook, a member of Phi Theta Kappa's Delta Phi Chapter at Centenary College in New Jersey. Snook learned about the NASA program through Phi Theta Kappa, and overcame her initial hesitation to apply. A nontraditional student, Snook enrolled at Centenary College when her employer, Johnson and Johnson, partnered with the college to offer blended courses and full tuition reimbursements.

NASA Scholar Keith Crisman said that the support from his chapter, Alpha Psi Tau at Ozarks Technical Community College in Missouri, helped give him the confidence to apply. "Joining Phi Theta Kappa gave me a family and support system that I didn't have before. This made me realize that I am capable of so much more than just taking classes and moving on," said Crisman about Phi Theta Kappa's opportunities for engagement.

Phi Theta Kappa Aerospace Scholars include:
Alabama

Michael Fralick, Faulkner State Community College
Arizona

Heather Thomas, Mesa Community College
California

Richie Agpaoa, Southwestern College

Trevor Davenport, Cerritos College

Hisu Park, Long Beach City College

Lucas Pettit, Folsom Lake College
Florida

Jacob Easterling, Brevard Community College

Matthew Hopper, Seminole State College of Florida
Illinois

Kristen OMara, Harper College
Maine

Sheena Farmer, Kennebec Valley Community College
Michigan

Elizabeth Banas, Mid Michigan Community College
Mississippi

Sage Gerard, Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, Jefferson Davis Campus
Missouri

Keith Crisman, Ozarks Technical Community College
Nevada

Sara Gowin, College of Southern Nevada
New Jersey

Paul Crisanti, Camden County College

Nicole Schoenstein, Atlantic Cape Community College

Mary-Catherine Snook, Centenary College
New York

Steven Riggall, Mohawk Valley Community College
Ohio

Ryan Thompson, Sinclair Community College
Oklahoma

Corbin Graham, Seminole State College
Pennsylvania

Kevin Arentz, Reading Area Community College

Jennifer Rizel, Luzerne County Community College
Texas

Jeffrey Germaneri, Collin College
Virginia

Ricky Riaz, Northern Virginia Community College, Loudoun Campus
Utah

Christopher Thompson, Salt Lake Community College
Washington

Jason Cowin, Centralia College