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News > AFRL contributes to ‘AF Week’ in New York
Air Force Week/AFRL
1st Lt. Jason Holzman, Air Force Research Laboratory, explains how lasers work to members of a Boys and Girls Club during 2012 Air Force Week in New York City in August. Courtesy Photo
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AFRL contributes to ‘AF Week’ in New York

Posted 10/5/2012   Updated 10/5/2012 Email story   Print story


by Jeanne Dailey
Air Force Research Laboratory

10/5/2012 - Kirtland Air Force Base -- Scientists from the Air Force Research Laboratory's Directed Energy and Space Vehicles Directorates at Kirtland Air Force Base, participated in "Air Force Week" from Aug. 19-21 in New York City.

Air Force Week is a program endorsed by the Chief of Staff of the Air Force that provides the opportunity to show and tell civic leaders, opinion leaders and the public what the Air Force does, while demonstrating the service's gratitude to the communities supporting the Air Force.

The event began with opening remarks from the Secretary of the Air Force, Michael Donley, a Thunderbird flyover, interactive displays, and performances by the Air Force band.

Three days of events were aimed at showcasing the Air Force to more than 8 million New Yorkers.

"Air Force Week shines a big spotlight on our Airmen's essential contributions to America's national security, and America's Airmen in the fight," Donley said.

The event provided the public, opinion leaders and civic leaders an insight into what the Air Force does and is one way the Air Force gives back to the communities it serves.

Melody Ford, of Space Vehicles, and 1st Lt. Jason Holzman, of Directed Energy, were a part of the science, technology, engineering and math interactive displays at Pier 86.

Ford represented the University Nanosat Program, which encourages U.S. university students to competitively design, build, launch and track a small-satellite or nanosat.

"The students were very keen in asking questions regarding the space industry and satellite operation," said Ford. "To see the children excited about the technologies we presented was inspiring."

Holzman expressed a similar view of the experience.

"This was an amazing opportunity to share what we do at AFRL and learn firsthand what other AFRL units are researching, as well as seeing the excitement of the kids as I conducted a variety of laser experiments," said Holzman. "It was a lot of fun motivating the children to think about the uses of lasers in a new way."

The AFRL places a high priority on STEM studies to educate the nation's youth in the sciences. This is particularly relevant as the nation has seen a marked decline in recent years in a science related workforce. Participating in events such as 2012 Air Force Week provides AFRL an avenue to inspire today's youth to enter into STEM studies and career paths.

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