Caroline Carson, director of choral activities at the University of New Orleans heads Monday to south Mississippi to attend a national address at the NASA Stennis Space Center.
The National Aeronautics Space and Administration Center's "State of NASA” media address will air at all 10 NASA centers around the U.S., including Stennis Space Center, which is located in Hancock County, Miss., and is known as America's Largest Rocket Ship Facility. Carson is a NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory Solar System Ambassador and speaks to groups “about space exploration, NASA missions, the universe and its ties to philosophy, theology, music, and wonder,” she said.
“I’m honored to be selected as a participant for the #StateofNASA event at NASA's John C. Stennis Space Center this coming Monday,” Carson said in an email. “I’ve been fortunate to have attended other NASA events — the Mars Curiosity launch, the Goldstone Deep Space Network, and ISS research at Houston’s Johnson Space Center and Mission Control. I’ve also been able to attend Lockheed Martin’s final delivery of The Last Raptor F-22 to the US Airforce.”
NASA’s vision is “to reach for new heights and reveal the unknown so that what we do and learn will benefit all humankind,” Carson said, adding that industry leaders, legislators, universities and other organizations, as well as U.S. residents, must continue to support space organizations such as NASA and to promote STEM / STEAM education programs.
Events such as the national “State of NASA” address give the public a chance “to intimately become a part of NASA’s vision and help infuse forward motion into developing space programs,” Carson said. “Most of the general public just isn’t aware of what is out there unless events, such as the Rosetta mission's Philae landing on comet 67P ... hit the evening news,” she said.
“I believe that we have a responsibility ‘to check in’ at least periodically, about things that affect humanity and our global efforts to explore and discover,” Carson said. “If we have the means, I believe that we can support programs that change lives and education with our money, our time, or our voices of support.”
Carson encouraged the UNO community to check out the NASA, ESA, or JPL websites lately, where they can learn more about current space missions now happening and in development.
“Monday's exciting event will shed light on the "State of NASA" and I hope you'll tune in!" she said in a message to students, faculty and staff. Carson will be Tweeting from the event using the handles @The_SolarSystem and @Conductor222.
Anyone can follow the #NASASocial hashtag on Twitter or NASASocial on other social media platforms on Monday and watch on NASA TV to learn about the State of NASA from the view of participants behind the scenes at NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration Centers around the U.S., she said.
In addition to directing all choral activities at UNO, Carson serves on UNO’s committee for Graduate Courses and Curriculum. She is co-chair of Liturgy & Music for the Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana, director of music at St. Paul's Episcopal, and president-elect of Louisiana's ACDA (American Choral Directors Association). She is slated to teach on UNO's Glories of France program this summer.