[meteorite-list] Re: SIPI Students to Help ID Meteorites

From: Ron Baalke <baalke_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Thu Apr 22 09:37:36 2004
Message-ID: <200012202346.PAA21990_at_zagami.jpl.nasa.gov>

> Hello Ron,
> At first blush this seemed to be great news, but now I'm starting to see
> some down sides to this story. I would sure like to get more information
> about this before I firm up my opinion, because it has raised a number
> questions for me.

Hi Bob,

You bring up some interesting questions. I just received this email from
Horton Newson that should shed some light on some of your questions.

Ron Baalke

>From Horton Newsom (newsom_at_unm.edu)

Dear Ron
Here is a copy of the press release that will clear up a confusion about our
educational project. Unfortunately, John Fleck's article was edited to
suggest that the meteorite identification laboratory was the main purpose of
the grant.

Sincerely, Horton Newsom


December 14, 2000


        In conjunction with the Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute
(SIPI), the University of New Mexico has received a three-year, $402,000
grant from NASA for a new program titled Stars on Earth. The program
provides under-represented high school students with research experience in
space science and technology-based academic preparation in math, science,
engineering and technology (MSET). SIPI college students will also benefit
from the establishment of new course in Earth and Planetary Science, and the
opportunity to be involved in related research projects.
        The coordinator of special programs at SIPI, Cathy Abeita, is the
principal investigator for the Stars on Earth program and will work with UNM
research professor Dr. Horton Newsom of the Institute of Meteoritics and the
Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences.
        "The NASA program is one of several student outreach programs at
SIPI," says SIPI president Carolyn Elgin. "The program is designed to
support high school students in preparing for math, science, engineering and
technology programs in college through research experiences in space science
and technology-based academic preparation."
        The centerpiece of the Stars on Earth program is a six-week
residential experience at SIPI, which will include a research experience
component that will impact both the high school students and the SIPI
faculty and students involved in the outreach program through special
training at the Institute of Meteoritics (IOM) at UNM.
        The research activity focuses on the establishment of a Meteorite
Identification Laboratory, which will be housed in SIPI's soon-to-be-reality
60,000 square foot Advanced Technical Education Applications Building. The
building will serve as a teaching and research laboratory for the NASA
program and ensures that American Indian students who select science,
mathematics, and engineering fields will have access to a state-of-the-art
facility and equipment at SIPI in collaboration with the IOM.
        Identifying meteorites requires a basic understanding of meteorite
properties and the ability to conduct a logical investigation using basic
geological equipment. In suspicious cases or samples, advanced analysis
will be conducted at UNM using a scanning electron microscope with the
assistance of SIPI students.
        "Students who participate in the summer program will have an
opportunity to live on a college campus and discover firsthand what it is
like to attend college," Abeita says. "The students find out that college
can be a reality for them. We are very pleased to be working with Dr.
Newsom and UNM's Institute of Meteoritics on this project."
        In addition to the programs for students, activities for the student's
high school teachers and parents will provide a source of support and
reinforcement for choosing a technical career path. The Stars on Earth
program builds on successful outreach programs at each institution.
        "The Stars on Earth program will encourage large numbers of
students, especially Native American students, to pursue technical careers
in fields of Earth, Environmental, and Planetary Sciences," said Newsom. "I
am excited that students who participate in this opportunity will obtain
training that can benefit NASA and the students' communities."
        Abeita, who has a master's in education with a focus in science
education and curriculum development from UNM, has extensive experience in
the implementation of mathematics and sciences programs, recruitment and
selection of program participants, academic instructors, residential staff,
program evaluation, follow-up and data/tracking systems.
        Newsom brings experience in research about the origin of the Earth
and Moon and impact cratering processes on Earth and Mars. He has
participated in numerous outreach programs, including a $300,000 grant from
NASA's PACE program, which began in 1998 as an outreach program to middle
school students.
Received on Wed 20 Dec 2000 06:46:33 PM PST

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