Copperas Cove High School students selected for NASA program  

Posted at 5:15 PM, Jan 29, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-03 15:20:06-04

Two Copperas Cove High School juniors are getting an out-of-this-world opportunity to learn from the very men and women they want to become when they grow up.

"Yes, that's it. That's it. That's what I want to do," Abdiel Hernandez-Lopez, a NASA Texas High School Aerospace Scholar, said. 

Taking AP classes, playing sports, participating in robotics, and learning directly from NASA's finest is a normal day for Copperas Cove High School juniors Abdiel Hernandez-Lopez and CJ Penman.

"It's very important to me that programs like these exist because now, people like me and CJ, can be able to, will be able to have our interest in the space sciences nurtured," Hernandez-Lopez added. 

Abdiel, a future NASA astronaut. CJ, a future mechanical engineer in the aerospace field.  

"This giant door has opened up for me and, oh it's amazing because I'm able to do so much through this program," CJ Penman, also a NASA Texas High School Aerospace Scholar, said. 

The NASA High School Aerospace Scholar program provides the two teenagers a unique opportunity to be challenged in an online program and learn directly from NASA engineers and scientists. 

"You're talking to an astronaut, and you're like, wow. You've been to space. I have so many questions," Penman added.  

The boys agree this program has been a one-of-a-kind experience... and hope to be two of a few students selected to tour NASA facilities and plan a mission to Mars.

"It's out of this world. I can't even... it's just one of those feelings you can't describe," Penman said. 

If the Copperas Cove ISD students are chosen to be a part of the group to tour NASA facilities, they will head to the Johnson Space Center in Houston this summer for an entire week.

After a very competitive process, students are selected by their state legislature to participate in the program.    

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