Blue Origin Leaders Visit Columbia High

Collaborative Courtesy Kimberly Chappell

General John Hyten, the Executive Director of the Blue Origin Club for the Future, visited Columbia High School (CHS) on Monday, August 8th along with Michael Edmonds and other leaders from Blue Origin to speak with students and school staff about the future, aerospace, science, technology, engineering and mathematics — and how these things can be used to find solutions to the world's problems.  The joint effort helped inspire and engage students about the many career opportunities available in the aerospace industry.

This collaboration served as an excellent example of how educational institutions and the aerospace industry collaborate to inspire students to pursue STEM careers. Each organization is committed to fostering a spirit of education and exploration.

Blue Origin is a nonprofit foundation designed to inspire the next generation of space leaders. The company was founded by Jeff Bezos with the vision of enabling a future where millions of people are living and working in space to benefit Earth.

Dr. Jones addressed, welcomed, and thanked the visitors in a speech and then the leaders from Blue Origin discussed the mission and vision of their company.  Afterward, the students were able to complete a unique hands-on activity by filling out postcards that will make a round-trip to space before being returned to them.

CHS Student Ja'Niya Foy said, "I thought it was very inspirational.  It's a one-of-a-kind experience."

The event was organized by HCS Director of Public Development Elizabeth Fleming along with the CHS Administrative Team and JROTC Department. Superintendent Christie Finley, Career & Technical Education Director Zac McWhorter, District 5 Board Member Carlos Matthews, Curriculum Specialist Mark Vanhooser, and others were in attendance.

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