WILMINGTON, Del. – Yesterday, U.S. Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) hosted a virtual event with astronaut Dr. Jeanette Epps, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine, Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long, and 250-plus Delaware students.

The virtual event, which involved FAME Delaware and Delaware Space Grant Consortium students, focused on the importance of STEM education and NASA’s Artemis program.

"NASA's Artemis mission has the goal of landing a woman on the moon by 2024, and it's something that I'm grateful NASA is championing," said Sen. Coons, a member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies, which funds NASA.

"Inspiring the next generation of scientists, engineers, and explorers – the Artemis Generation – ensures America will continue to lead in space exploration and discovery," said NASA Administrator Bridenstine. "Delaware is committed to STEM education, and is already making great contributions to America's Moon to Mars exploration plans. The students who participated in today's event are tomorrow's NASA and aerospace workforce, and encouraging STEM early on in their education is critical to America’s future in space. We are grateful to Senator Coons for his leadership to promote STEM education, and look forward to continuing strong partnerships in the state of Delaware."

"Open your minds to the new frontiers offered by a career in STEM fields, keep them open and take these opportunities, to learn and grow," said Lt. Gov. Hall-Long. "You are the next generation of leaders that will guide us and expand STEM industry careers. Thank you to Sen. Coons and to NASA for hosting this event today and providing a unique opportunity for Delaware students to learn firsthand about all the amazing opportunities available to them."

A research scientist and professor, Dr. Hall-Long also serves as the honorary co-chair of the Million Women Mentors, which promotes and connects young girls with leaders in STEM related fields.

To watch a video of yesterday's virtual event, visit https://bit.ly/2Ttx71h.