CVCC student gets NASA aid

Sept. 28, 2017 

Stacey Evenson is taking part in an expenses-paid NASA project for college students. This month she is part of a team that gets to build a rover with NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars.

 To qualify, she spent time in a five-week course online with NCAS. They studied the steps to go to Mars, NASA benefits, various forms of science and more. Her capstone project was to write a 7-10 page essay, a task she thought she couldn’t complete. Not only did she complete the essay, it qualified her for the upcoming project. Students from all over the country were chosen based on their grades in the online course. Among her peers in the project group, only two others are Alabama students.

 Stacey finished her associate degree this past May. She studied information technology and is currently enrolled to finish more of her general education courses so she can transfer to Columbus State. (Although some might argue she’s still at CVCC because she loves it so much.)

“I loved my computer courses, I love to learn, I love to research,” she said.

 “Ms. Aurelia Smith was my advisor, but she’s also my teacher and my mentor. She’s always there. She is the one who encouraged me to continue on at CSU. She’s also the one who told me about the NCAS program.”

 Another faculty member who left an impression on Stacey is Mary Johnson. She struggled with math until Ms. Johnson. Stacey added, “I looked at the math like solving a research problem.” Just a simple mindset shift helped Stacey realize that she loved math and science. Two subjects that were hard before are now her favorite in pursuit of her NASA dreams.

 Stacey didn’t come to CVCC straight out of high school. For many years she owned a convenience store, but sold it in June 2015. After a period of unemployment, she worked in tech support, but wanted to do more. Now, after attending CVCC, she has dreams of being an engineer or working in cyber security.

 “I want to do anything that is creative or innovative, but I would really love to intern with NASA.” She added, “I look at the trees now and I get bored. They seem so boring in comparison. It makes me want to go to space.”

 For Stacey, the sky will not be her limit.