Space shuttle astronaut Leland Melvin and Mary J. Blige

*Mary J. Blige is partnering with NASA to encourage girls and young women to pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

NASA released two public service announcements starring Blige and space shuttle astronaut Leland Melvin at its website and YouTube channel. [Watch below.]

In addition, Blige, who cofounded the Foundation for the Advancement of Women Now in 2008, has made several recent television appearances to promote the initiative, reports Black Enterprise magazine.

The collaboration aims to bring attention to NASA’s Summer of Innovation, a multiweek, intensive STEM program for middle school teachers and students. Coordinators hope the program, which is in support of President Barack Obama’s Educate to Innovate Campaign, will counter the “summer slide” (loss of academic skills over the summer) and other issues facing students who are underrepresented, underserved, and underperforming in STEM.