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Space exploration expert, NMSU alumnus returns to lecture

New Mexico State University alumnus Patrick Moore is returning to the College of Arts and Sciences to present a far-reaching discussion on the development of spaceflight programs in the U.S.


Upper half of man holding a camera and looking into the distance
New Mexico State University alumnus Patrick Moore will lecture on the development of spaceflight programs in the U.S. from 6-7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 21, in the Digital Media Theater in Milton Hall. (Submitted photo)

His lecture, "White Sands, Florida Coast, and East Texas Marshes: The Rise and Fall of NASA's Human Spaceflight Programs," is scheduled from 6-7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 21, in the Digital Media Theater in Milton Hall. The talk is free and open to the public.

"It's a fascinating story that links local, national and global history with the solar system," said Peter Kopp, an assistant professor and director of public history at NMSU.

Moore is an expert in 20th-century American history and the incoming president of the National Council on Public History. He teaches at the University of West Florida, where he is the director of the Public History Program. He is also a co-founder of "Next Exit History," a mobile app organization that uses GPS technology to guide people to historic sites.

In the presentation, Moore will discuss the evolution of the spaceflight program from the V-2 to the final flight of Atlantis in 2011. Moore, who has lived in both New Mexico and Florida, will also explain the regional and national connections of the history and discuss its influence on the future.

"After the U.S. government captured elements of the Nazi rocketry program, they expanded their missile program at White Sands Proving Grounds and later at Cape Canaveral," Kopp said. "That foundation allowed for the launching of first rockets and then humans into space."

Moore earned his B.A. and M.A. at NMSU and his Ph.D. at Arizona State University. In 2007, he was named Carnegie Professor of the Year for Florida.

For more information, contact Kopp at pkopp@nmsu.edu.