SAND SPRINGS, Oklahoma - NASA engineer and one of Oklahoma’s own was back in town to talk with Sand Springs students about STEM careers; he’ll also be inducted into the Sandite Hall of Fame.

Tim Wright will never forget his first day on the job; it was the day the Space Shuttle Columbia exploded.

February 1st, 2003 was Wright's first day as a manager at NASA.

"We did the unthinkable. They told us the fleet was gonna be grounded five to 10 years, that's unacceptable - people pulled together,” Wright said.

And the shuttle program flew for the rest of the decade; now there are new programs on the horizon.

Wright said, "There's a lot of challenges, a lot of challenges. Right now they're trying to get to Mars, you know, 2030 time frame."

Which means one of the kids at Garfield STEAM Academy might be the next Tim Wright to show up at NASA and be part of the team that gets it done.

Wright is also back home to be inducted into the Sandite Hall of Fame, something is said is the honor of a lifetime. He came back to town early so he could spend some time with young students.

"To come back and talk to these kids, it's like, I'd do it all day if I could," he said.

Giving back to his hometown which gave him such a head start to a great career.