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Oakwood Teacher Selected by NASA for Science Flights
OAKWOOD -- NASAs Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, or SOFIA, will become a flying classroom for local Oakwood High School science teacher Heidi Steinbrink, during research flights in the next few months.
Steinbrink has been selected for SOFIAs Airborne Astronomy Ambassadors program and will be paired with a professional astronomer to observe first-hand how airborne infrared astronomy is conducted. SOFIA is a highly modified Boeing 747SP jetliner fitted with a huge telescope and flies at altitudes between 39,000 and 45,000 feet (7 to 8.5 miles), above water vapor in the Earths atmosphere, and collects data in the infrared spectrum.
This will be an amazing opportunity to bring cutting edge science and technology into my classroom and into classrooms around the country, remarked Heidi Steinbrink. She continued with, From applications of the engineer design process to a better understanding of astronomy, my students will now have access to NASA scientists and engineers to bring classroom content to life in real world applications.
We are very proud of Ms. Steinbrinks dedication to our students and her willingness to commit to the extensive professional development and specialized training necessary to bring this opportunity to our district, said Dr. Kyle Ramey, Superintendent. He continued with, This is another example of the quality education that Oakwood students experience in the learning environment established by our outstanding staff.
Steinbrink will be at NASAs Dryden Aircraft Operations Facility in Palmdale, Calif., for a week and it is anticipated that the flights will occur in April or May of this year. The missions are 10 to 12 hours long and occur at night.
Steinbrink is in her 11th year of teaching science at Oakwood High School and serves as the Science Department Chair, adviser of the nationally recognized Energy Team, National Honor Society, and cheerleading squads. She has served as a STEM Fellow for the Dayton Regional STEM Center and was the National Air Force Association Teacher of the Year runner-up in 2012. She resides in Oakwood with her two children.
Oakwood High School Principal Paul Waller commented, To have a science teacher in the building work closely with NASA to bring new and exciting science experiences to our students is amazing. Heidi has always gone above and beyond, and now she is doing it again, literally.
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