Georgia Tech Student Receives Astronaut Scholarship


Georgia Tech Junior Joy Buolamwini received a $10,000 scholarship from the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation.

August 25, 2010

The very first Space Shuttle pilot, Robert Crippen, will present
Georgia Tech Junior Joy Buolamwini with a $10,000 scholarship from the
Astronaut Scholarship Foundation (ASF) during a public presentation and
ceremony, Friday, September 3 at 11:00 a.m. in the Klaus Advanced Computing Building, Georgia Tech Campus.

The award ceremony will coincide with a presentation by Crippen,
a four flight veteran, who has logged more than 565 hours in space, orbited the
earth 374 times and traveled more than 9.4 million miles. The lecture is free
and open to the public.

“It is my honor to be presenting Joy with the Astronaut
Scholarship Foundation Award,” said Crippen, “Joy is a bright, up-and-coming
forerunner in the field of computer science and she will be one of the many
leaders who will keep the United States at the leading edge of breakthrough
technology.”

Buolamwini is majoring in computer science and holds a 4.0
GPA. She has worked on a data tracking system for Google-sponsored research and
is interested in developing affordable mobile technology to propel economic
development in West African nations. Buolamwini is also interested in health
care applications of computer technology. She plans to earn a Ph.D. in computer
science and pursue “research with an entrepreneurial spirit.”

The Astronaut Scholarship is the largest monetary award
given in the United States to science and engineering undergraduate students
based solely on merit. Twenty of these prestigious awards were dispersed this
year through ASF to outstanding college students majoring in science,
engineering or math. More than $3 million in scholarships have been awarded to
date with $204,000 to Georgia Tech students alone. These well-rounded students
exhibit motivation, imagination and intellectual daring, as well as exceptional
performance, both in and out of the classroom.

Crippen was selected
as a NASA Astronaut in September 1969. After serving as a member of the Astronaut
support crew for Skylab 2,3 and 4, he was named Pilot for the first Shuttle Columbia, STS-1, and served as the
spacecraft commander for STS-7, STS-41C and STS-41G. STS-1 was the first
spacecraft to launch with wings using solid rocket boosters, as well as the first
winged reentry vehicle to return to a conventional runway landing. Crippen, a retired Navy captain, later served as
director, NSTS Operations, at NASA's Kennedy Space Center, and as KSC director
from 1992 to January 1995. He then served as president of Thiokol Aerospace
Group in Utah and now resides in Florida. Crippen serves on the Board of
Directors for the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation and was inducted into the
U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame on November 10, 2001.

The Astronaut Scholarship Foundation is a non-profit
organization established by the Mercury Astronauts in 1984. Its goal is to aid
the United States in retaining its world leadership in science and technology
by providing scholarships for exceptional college students pursuing degrees in
these fields. Today, more than 80 Astronauts from the Gemini, Apollo, Skylab,
Space Shuttle and Space Station programs have joined in this educational
endeavor.  For more information,
call 321-455-7015 or log on to www.AstronautScholarship.org.