By James Dacey
In one of the less predictable pairings of the year, NASA has teamed up with Mary J Blige, the singer, actor, producer and all-round US megastar.
The pairing has come about in an attempt to encourage more young women in the US to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
Blige co-founded the Foundation for the Advancement of Women Now (FFAWN) in 2008 to “inspire women from all walks of life to gain the confidence and skills they need to reach their individual potential”.
FFAWN has now joined forces with NASA’s Summer of Innovation (SoI) project, which started earlier this summer to help keep students engaged in STEM-related activities during the school break – part of Obama’s Educate to Innovate Campaign.
Blige is joined in this short video by NASA space shuttle astronaut Leland Melvin to explain the motivation behind the project.