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MEDIA CONTACT: Linda Holtz
561-297-0159, lholtz@fau.edu

FAU Alumni Association Holds Annual Holiday Reception
Astronaut Steven Swanson ’86 Named Hall of Fame Recipient

BOCA RATON, FL (January 23, 2008) – The Florida Atlantic University National Alumni Association (FAUNAA) recently held its annual Holiday Wine and Cheese Reception.   Hosted by President and Mrs. Frank T. Brogan, this FAUNAA-sponsored event drew close to 150 alumni, faculty, staff and friends of the University to the Eleanor R. Baldwin House on the Boca Raton campus.   Anthony Barbar ’78, FAUNAA president, extended holiday greetings on behalf of the Association.   Guests in attendance were encouraged to bring stocking stuffers for a children’s toy drive.   By evening’s end, toys were collected and earmarked for delivery to the Boca Raton Salvation Army.

Astronaut Steven Swanson ’86 was named the Fall 2007 FAUNAA Hall of Fame recipient.   Established by the FAUNAA in 1985, the Hall of Fame Award recognizes distinguished alumni who demonstrate exceptional service and commitment to their profession and to the community.   Swanson was on hand to present a community lecture on December 13 to more than 400 students from Broward and Palm Beach County schools. He spoke about the importance of education and relived his recent space mission experiences with the audience.   Swanson also addressed FAU graduates at the December 14 commencement ceremonies.

A member of NASA’s shuttle STS-117 team, mission specialist Swanson lifted off in June 2007.   The mission's chief duty was the delivery of materials needed to continue building the International Space Station. Swanson received his bachelor’s degree in engineering physics from the University of Colorado.   A year after earning a master’s degree from FAU, he joined NASA as a systems engineer in the Aircraft Operations Division working on the Shuttle Training Aircraft (STA).   In 1989, Swanson became a flight simulation engineer on the STA.   In 1998, the same year he completed his doctorate in computer science from Texas A&M University, Swanson was selected as a NASA astronaut candidate.   After completing the rigorous course of training, Swanson was assigned to the Astronaut Office Space Station Operations Branch.   He is the recipient of the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal, the Flight Simulation Engineering Award and is a member of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society.

-FAU-

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Florida Atlantic University opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University serves more than 26,000 undergraduate and graduate students on seven campuses strategically located along 150 miles of Florida's southeastern coastline. Building on its rich tradition as a teaching university, with a world-class faculty, FAU hosts ten colleges:  College of Architecture, Urban & Public Affairs, Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts & Letters, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Biomedical Science, the Barry Kaye College of Business, the College of  Education, the College of  Engineering & Computer Science, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Graduate College,   the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science.  

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