By Tim Ryan

Hampton Roads, VA – In a visionary initiative to intertwine educational practices with the burgeoning demands of the technological workforce, REaKTOR hosted an enlightening symposium for educators from Kecoughtan High School on March 18th. This gathering of minds, featuring insights from the NASA Langley Research Center, Science Systems and Applications, Inc. (SSAI), and Old Dominion University (ODU), marked a significant stride toward empowering teachers with the knowledge and skills required to prepare students for a future in innovation.

Mayor Donnie Tuck addresses the attendees.

The symposium, spearheaded by REaKTOR with an opening address from Mayor Donnie Tuck and NASA Langley’s Deputy Director Lisa Ziehmann, illuminated the pathway from classroom learning to real-world application. The event encapsulated a comprehensive view of the industry’s evolving capabilities with a focus on sectors like Advanced Air Mobility, Advanced Manufacturing, and the Entry, Descent, and Landing of Spacecraft.

Educators discussed technology transfer, commercialization, and corporate partnerships throughout the day with ODU’s Kevin Leslie, providing a rounded perspective on the journey from idea to implementation. Further illuminating the path to workforce integration, Karen Miller from NASA outlined the steps to securing roles within the administration, highlighting the USA Jobs, Pathways, and Internship programs.

A team-building exercise that challenged the brightest minds.

In a unique “speed dating” segment, participants connected with individuals who sparked innovative conversations, fostering an environment of collaboration and shared vision. The day concluded with an inclusive team-building session hosted by NASA Langley’s Karen Miller and REaKTOR’s Rich Antcliff, ensuring educators were left with a wealth of knowledge and inspiration.

This symposium underscores REaKTOR’s dedication to fortifying the link between education and industry, assuring that the next generation of students is equipped for tomorrow’s space and technology landscape challenges. It represents a foundational step in a series of educational endeavors by REaKTOR to cultivate a curriculum that transcends traditional learning, molding students into the leaders and innovators of the future.

As REaKTOR looks to the future, it’s with a profound sense of purpose and commitment to fostering an ecosystem where education and industry coalesce to inspire breakthroughs. This symposium is not an end but a beginning—a promise of continued support and dedication to those shaping the minds of tomorrow. We are not just nurturing educators; we are catalyzing change agents equipped to guide the next wave of pioneers poised to make an indelible impact on our world. Join us in this transformative journey as we break barriers and enlighten pathways to discovery and growth. Keep connected with REaKTOR, where education meets innovation, for the latest updates and future engagements.