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Southern University, among 14 HBCUs to 'travel' on Boeing spacecraft in NASA mission

Posted at 3:31 PM, Jun 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-17 16:31:29-04

Southern University and A&M College will onboard a mission with NASA alongside 13 fellow HBCU’s.

Boeing CST-100 Starliner embarks on its second unmaned flight for NASA’s Commercial Crew Program. The mission is to prove the sufficiency of the system to safely carry astronauts to and from the space station.

Items representing select HBCU’s, including flags and pennants, will be a part of the cargo inside the spacecraft.

Southern University partnered with Boeing in an 18-month agreement to work together on NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS). Boeing will provide tactical business and technical support to the university to improve its ability to win NASA contracts and subcontracts.

"Closing representation gaps in our company and our industry is a priority for Boeing, and inspiring diverse students to pursue careers in aerospace is an important part of that effort," said Boeing president and CEO David Calhoun. "By representing HBCUs on our Starliner mission, we are demonstrating our commitment to working with these institutions to advance equity and inclusion and help ensure a bright future for their students.”

In addition to Southern, represented universities — with which Boeing also has a recruiting relationship — are Allen University in South Carolina, Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College and Spelman College, part of the Atlanta University Center Consortium; Alabama A&M University; Florida A&M University; Howard University in Washington, D.C.; Morgan State University in Maryland; North Carolina A&T; Prairie View A&M University in Texas; South Carolina State University; Tennessee State University and Tuskegee University in Alabama.

The Starliner launch is slated to occur in late July.