EASTON — More than 200 people from Maryland’s First Congressional District attended the first Aerospace Career Day on Saturday, Oct. 11, at Easton Airport.
The event was hosted by the office of Rep. Andy Harris, R-Md.-1st, for those students in middle school, high school and college, and their parents, of Maryland’s First Congressional District. Maryland’s First Congressional District encompasses the entire Eastern Shore, including Salisbury, and parts of Baltimore, Harford and Carroll counties. Harris did not attend the event.
Representatives from NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Federal Aviation Administration, Trident Aircraft, UAV Solutions and other members of the aerospace industry were present. Representatives provided information and answered questions for those students interested in learning about potential career paths in the aerospace industry, including careers as pilots, astronauts, mechanics and engineers.
NOAA provided information on their Ernest F. Hollings Scholarship Program and the Educational Partnership Program. The Educational Partnership Program develops education and research at Minority Serving Institutions in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math. The program has an undergraduate scholarship program and four active Cooperative Science Centers at 22 institutions in 10 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. NASA provided information on its Wallops Flight Facility, which conducts research using suborbital vehicles, including aircraft, scientific balloons and sounding rockets. Wallops Flight Facility also is home to NASA’s only rocket launch range. Trident Aircraft provided information on flight training and UAV Solutions provided information on unmanned systems used for a number of services, including surveillance and security.
“The goal is to encourage young people to think of careers in aerospace,” said Mike Henry, Easton Airport manager.
Harris’ Chief of Staff Kevin Reigrut said hosting the event felt natural to Harris, due to his time on the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology. Although Harris had to relinquish his membership in the committee when he was appointed to the House Committee on Appropriations, Reigrut said he still is invested in gaining student interest in STEM fields, and specifically the aerospace field.
“Congressman Harris has a personal interest in STEM education related issues,” said Reigrut.