NASA will help encourage an estimated 325,000 high school
students of Hispanic descent to pursue careers in science,
technology, engineering and mathematics during Hispanic
Engineering, Science and Technology Week (HESTEC) 2003,
October 13-16.

HESTEC Week, hosted by the University of Texas-Pan American in Edinburg, Texas, offers unique opportunities for Hispanic
students to interface with industry executives, government
officials and educators to help them explore science and
mathematics-related careers. The event also actively engages
educators and parents, while encouraging improvements in
school science, mathematics and technology curricula.

NASA’s Deputy Associate Administrator for Education Programs
Dr. Clifford W. Houston, astronaut Ellen Ochoa, Equal
Opportunity Programs executive Estella Gillette will
participate as speakers, symposia panelists and workshop
leaders. They join Secretary of Education Rod Paige, Rep.
Ruben Hinojosa and actress Rita Moreno to encourage students
to pursue higher education, science and technical careers.

“One of NASA’s core goals is to inspire the next generation of
explorers, a diverse group of young people who will replenish
our aging workforce,” remarked Houston. “Our participation at
HESTEC Week events enables us to reach an enormous audience of Hispanic students, advancing our ability to inspire and
motivate young people traditionally underrepresented in
science, technology, engineering and mathematics-related
careers,” he said.

NASA is proud to be in the second year of a $300,000, three-
year program, Project PEERS, with the University of Texas-Pan
American. The purpose of PEERS is to improve teachers’
capacity to offer education opportunities for at-risk students
from middle and high schools in the Rio Grande Valley in

HESTEC organizers expect on-site participation by more than
25,000 students, 2,000 educators and 2,000 parents. They
anticipate reaching more than 300,000 students nationwide by
webcasts and closed-circuit TV coverage of conference symposia
and workshops. High school students from 42 Texas “GEAR UP”
schools are participating in HESTEC. “GEAR UP,” a Department
of Education grant program, is designed to increase the number
of low-income students succeeding in postsecondary education.

NASA is hosting an educational downlink on Tuesday, October
14, from 12:10 to 12:30 p.m. EDT with the crew of the
International Space Station and HESTEC participants. The
downlink is with the Station Expedition 7 crew, U.S. astronaut
Ed Lu and Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko.

The International Space Station program, provided via NASA
downlink, is one in a series with education organizations
across the country. It is an integral component of NASA’s
Teaching from Space Program. The program enables education
opportunities, using the unique environment of human space
flight, and builds partnerships with education communities to
create unique learning opportunities, through the use of NASA
research and educational technology.

The downlink is available on NASA TV on AMC-9, transponder 9C,
C-Band, located at 85 degrees west longitude. The frequency is
3880.0 MHz. Polarization is vertical and audio is monaural at
6.80 MHz.

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For more information about HESTEC on the Internet, visit:

For information about NASA’s education programs on the
Internet, visit: