Contact: Michelle Lucas
Higher Orbits

Higher Orbits BRINGS GO FOR LAUNCH! TO Austin

Nonprofit Uses Space Exploration to Foster Student Engagement in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math

April 29, 2016Leesburg, Va.—Higher Orbits today announced that it will host its first Texas Go For Launch! program at St. Edward’s University in Austin, TX July 11-13, 2016. Students in the Austin area will have the opportunity to participate in the three-day program that that uses space exploration as a platform to launch student engagement in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM), STEAM (Art); teamwork; communication; and leadership.


Through their participation in Go For Launch! students learn about human spaceflight and get insight and feedback through a variety of talks delivered by experienced space and STEM professionals. Speakers scheduled to participate in this event include retired Astronaut Michael Forman, former ISS Flight Controller and Astronaut Instructor Michelle Lucas, Dr. Gary Morris Dean of Natural Sciences, Space Exercise Physiologist Paul Colosky and others. The goal is to illustrate the numerous opportunities that exist in STEM-related careers.


“I can’t wait for Go For Launch! at St. Edward’s in Austin, “says Astronaut (Retired) Michael Foreman. “Looking forward to talking STEM and sharing my space experiences with everyone there.”


The students will participate in collaborative activities and develop the idea for a space experiment, which they will present to a panel of judges in the space and STEM fields (including an astronaut). The judges will choose a winner at each Go For Launch! event. Winners from each event in the division will compete for the divisional title and those winners will have their experiments launched into space.


“As someone who grew up in love with space travel but without many options to have interactions where I could learn more,” said Michelle Lucas, Founder of Higher Orbits, “I’m excited to be able to bring the Go For Launch! program right to students in their hometown areas. Space inspires and I can’t wait to share that message with the students in the Austin area.”


Go For Launch! will run July 11-13, 2016 for high school aged students and will be held at St. Edward’s University. Registration for students is $250 and includes all supplies and meals. To register, or for more information, please visit


“St. Edward’s University challenges Austin area students: ‘Take on Your World’ by participating in this year’s Go For Launch — develop team work, leadership, and STEM skills. And the winning project goes to the International Space Station. How cool is that?” says Dr. Gary Morris Dean of Natural Sciences St. Edward’s University


Higher Orbits is supported by Intergalactic Sponsors: Space Tango, Kentucky Space, and eddi who help make all Go For Launch! events possible. Sponsorship opportunities are available at various levels for individual events, divisions, or the overall program. For more details please contact Michelle Lucas at or call 707-893-STAR.

About Higher Orbits

Higher Orbits is a 501(c)3 non-profit with the mission of promoting Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM); along with leadership, teamwork, and communication through the use of spaceflight. Mankind’s journey into space serves as an ideal launchpad to excite students of all ages about STEM and working to fulfill their dreams and ambitions. Higher Orbits uses a variety of programs and partnerships with other organizations to achieve these goals. To learn more visit


About Astronaut (Retired) Michael Foreman

Selected by NASA in June 1998, he reported for training in August 1998. Following Astronaut Candidate Training, he was assigned technical duties in the Astronaut Office Space Station Branch representing the Astronaut Office on training issues. He was then assigned to the Space Shuttle Branch as a liaison between the Johnson Space Center and the Kennedy Space Center and also served as Deputy of the Space Shuttle Branch. Foreman also served as Chief of External Programs at Glenn Research Center, Ohio, from June 2010 to May 2011. Upon returning to the Astronaut Office, Foreman was assigned to the Exploration Branch, working on the Commercial Crew Development Program. During his final three years at NASA, he served as the Safety Branch Chief in the Astronaut Office. A veteran of two space flights, Foreman flew on STS-123 in March 2008, and STS-129 in November 2009, and has logged more than 637 hours in space, including 32 hours and 19 minutes of EVA in five spacewalks. As a retired Astronaut, Mike is working as the CFO and VP for Business Development at Venturi Outcomes, LLC, a consulting firm in Houston.


About St. Edward’s University

Recognized among the nation’s best Catholic universities and colleges, and as one of “America’s Best Colleges,” St. Edward’s University stands distinctively as a top liberal arts university, with partner universities in 11 countries. The Congregation of Holy Cross founded St. Edward’s more than a century ago, encouraging students to think critically, act ethically, embrace diversity, strive for social justice and recognize their responsibility to the world community. These traits, combined with challenging academic programs in the arts, sciences and humanities, distinguish a top liberal arts university, and prep students for success and deep personal fulfillment.


Additional Collaterals Including Logos and Photos available at



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