NASA Flight Engineer Clay Robertson will speak Monday, April 8, 2024 at 10:00 AM in the Ouachita Center on the UARM campus, 1100 College Drive, Mena, AR. 

To celebrate the eclipse on April 8, 2024, UARM has scheduled NASA Engineer Clay Robertson to speak about NASA’s space exploration and the eclipse phenomenon. Robertson currently works in the Vibration, Acoustic, and Shock Laboratory at Marshall Space Flight Center located in Huntsville, Alabama, where he supports testing of NASA and commercial hardware development.

Originally from Morristown, Tennessee, Robertson was raised on a third-generation family farm. After high school, he attended Tennessee Tech University where he graduated with a degree in electrical engineering. After graduation, he became a full-time employee at Kennedy Space Center working as the onsite NASA representative providing oversight in preparing for the Orbiter Discovery. During this time, he worked in the Orbiter Processing facilities, the iconic Vehicle Assembly Building, and the two Space Shuttle launch pads. 

He later moved to engineering where he as a member of a group responsible for the power distribution onboard each of the four Space Shuttle Orbits. As Robertson states, “This hands-on job encompassed the orbiters avionics boxes, cockpit panels, pyrotechnics and approximately 230 miles of wiring in in each vehicle.  I participated in hardware testing after installation and repair and was in the Firing Room for many Space Shuttle launches.”

After earning a M.S in Space Systems Engineering from Florida Institute of Technology, Robertson transferred to Marshall Space Flight Center and was part of the recovery efforts of the Space Shuttle Columbia where he led a four-man helicopter crew in Texas and a 40-person firefighter ground crew in the swamps on the border of Texas and Louisiana.  He has worked to support the Space Shuttle Return to Flight mission as well as on numerous launches through the Imagery Analysis group to ensure flight safety.  Additionally, he supported the development of the Space Launch System and the Deep Space Habitat test bed activities.

For more information about the event at UA Rich Mountain, call 479.394.7622, ext. 1370, email, or visit This program is offered through NASA at no cost to attendees.

Tickets are available at UARM and Mena/Polk County Chamber of Commerce. 

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