The OCO Program is pleased to share with the public, all the excitement of the upcoming OCO-2 mission, as well as its latest science and societal benefits. OCO-2 is committed to the creation and promotion of education and outreach (EPO) products, activities and opportunities to a broad audience. In support of NASA's educational goals set forth in the 2011 NASA Strategic Plan, OCO-2 will:
- Attract and retain students in STEM disciplines along the full length of the education pipeline
- Build Strategic Partnerships that promote STEM literacy through formal and informal means
- Engaging the public in NASA’s missions by providing new pathways for participation
- Inform, engage, and inspire the public by sharing NASA’s mission, challenges and results
As several members of the OCO-2 science and management team are former teachers and professors, the OCO-2 team is especially interested in developing these education related components, and actively engaging our science attentive public. The team understands how cutting edge advances in research can spark the interest of students, and is eager to funnel OCO-2 data and work with the EPO team to enhance and develop educational and public outreach opportunities such as professional development workshops. As the ongoing debate continues on the role of greenhouse gases in climate change, OCO-2 EPO plans on sharing the crucial science information that will help inform the public to separate the fact from the fiction.
OCO-2 will take advantage of existing funded NASA programs such as the GLOBE (Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment) Program. OCO-2 will create a new Atmosphere/Climate protocol based upon CO2 measurements, so that the next generation of explorers can share the excitement of scientific discovery. Students will benefit from inquiry-based learning and student-based research advocated by professional educators. We hope that these experiences will inspire many of the students to pursue careers in science and technology. We will also be partnering with other NASA funded missions and projects such as Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) Mission , Carbon Arctic Reservoirs Vulnerability Experiment (CARVE), and the CloudSat Mission.
In order to continue inspiring and motivating students, we need to reach their teachers. OCO-2 will support professional development for teachers through the JPL Education office and their JPL Education Teacher Workshops. These workshops provide teachers with powerful techniques to supplement their state's Earth Science education standards with data generated from NASA missions.