ZELIENOPLE — NASA might be planning for a manned mission to Mars in the 2030s, but a Butler County teen completed a simulated trip to the Red Planet earlier this summer before returning to his home in Zelienople.
Nicholas Bowers, 15, recently attended the Advanced Space Academy at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center, the home of Space Camp and NASA Marshall Space Flight Center's Official Visitor Center in Huntsville, Ala.
The weeklong educational program promotes science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), while training students with hands-on activities and missions based on teamwork, leadership and problem solving.
Space Camp operates year-round in Huntsville and uses astronaut training techniques to engage trainees in real-world applications of STEM subjects. Students sleep in quarters designed to resemble the International Space Station and train in simulators like those used by NASA.
This is an excerpt — read our full interview with Nick in Sunday's Butler Eagle.