JBA Highlights STEM at Air Show

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Delano Scott
  • 11th Wing Public Affairs

For 70 years, the Air Force has consistently broken barriers as an element of the finest joint war fighting team on the planet, and its Airmen have refined its mission through innovation and teamwork.

 Sept. 15-17, the Air Force will celebrate its 70th birthday with the 2017 Joint Base Andrews Air Show: America’s Air & Space Demo.

 “We have been planning and preparing for months to make sure that the upcoming high-visibility, high-impact events are fitting for our service’s 70th birthday celebration,” said Col. E. John Teichert, 11th Wing and Joint Base Andrews commander. “The world is watching, and they will undoubtedly walk away amazed and inspired.”

 The public can see firsthand the Air Force’s capabilities through airpower as well as its focus on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.

 For the first time ever at an airshow, on Sept. 15, over 2,000 students from 28 schools throughout the mid-Atlantic region will be visiting the base to not only see world-class aircraft fly, but to also visit and take part in the JBA STEM exhibit. The exhibit will take place in a hangar and will feature between 20-30 models, displays and demonstrations.

 “This is the first time we’ve done anything like this on such a large scale at the JBA Air Show,” said Maj. William Sack, JBA Air Show director. “We’re showing assets and exhibits that have not typically been seen at any other air show. By consolidating all of these different science exhibits, we can make them easily accessible, fun and interactive for kids and adults alike.” 

 NASA’s New Horizon model, a Space X rocket exhibit, the U.S. Air Force Academy’s robotics and interactive display, and American University’s Laser Interferometry Gravitational Wave Detector are only some of the 20-30 displays to be featured.

Showing the importance of STEM at the JBA Air Show is a direct reflection of the ever-evolving role of today’s Air Force.  

“We wanted the public to get a better sense of not only the base’s local mission, but also the Air Force mission as a whole, which is growing immensely in the space and cyberspace fields,“ Sack said. “Many kids are coming to the air show because they have an interest in becoming pilots. However, in order to become a pilot, you have to be proficient in the STEM arena.  At this year’s air show, we can build a genuine interest in STEM for children by engaging them with the many incredible opportunities that will be present.”

By cultivating children’s interest in STEM at the air show, Sack hopes it results them walking away with newly sparked passion.       

 “When it’s time to crack open their books at night, they’ll now have a better idea of where STEM can take them,” Sack said.