Meet Steve Heck. These days, Steve is an educator astronaut – a new job title created thanks to the increasing emphasis on STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) in the world of commercial suborbital spaceflight, but before he began encouraging high-school students to fly their experiments in space, Steve was a US Air Force (USAF) pilot. During his 20+ years of service Steve rose to the rank of Lt Colonel while amassing more than 2,700 flight hours on all sorts of aircraft. Serving as a Command and Instructor Pilot, Steve combined his love of flying with his enthusiasm for education – work that culminated in his being nominated for one of President Bush’s “Points of Light” awards. In addition to receiving five Meritorious Service Medals while in the USAF, Steve was also an Outstanding Graduate from the USAF’s Air War College. After retiring from the military, Steve went hard to work as an educator, working closely with NASA as an Astronaut Educator in the Citizens in Space Program – work that garnered him a NASA Endeavour Fellowship. If you’re looking for one of the catalysts responsible for putting STEM on the suborbital radar, then look no further than Steve. In 2013, Steve graduated from NASTAR’s Suborbital Scientist Training Program (SSTP) and then went about creating the Arête STEM Project, the first program of its kind that aligns the commercial spaceflight industry with K-12 Education. It’s proven to be a very, very popular match. During 2013, 2014, and into 2015, Steve presented the concept at several schools in Ohio, pitching the opportunity for school children to fly their science experiments in space. For free! How is this possible?