The announcement included a video (2 min 25 sec) from the tour and interviews with ASCANs Jack Fischer (who has previously been a guest author on this blog here and here) and Reid Wiseman. Near the end of the video, Wiseman sums up the ASCAN life:
It's awesome so far. Absolutely fantastic. Way better than I had imagined. - Reid Wiseman
Duane Ross also contributed to the new release. He said that between now and May 2011, the ASCANs will receive 39 weeks of training that includes ISS systems, robotics, EVAs, flights, and Russian. They'll have time to learn Russian since they no longer must devote 54 weeks for Space Shuttle training.
26 September Update:Beth Beck wrote an excellent blog post titled Space Invaders in Nation’s Capitol that offers further insight into the ASCAN life. I strongly recommend readers surf on over to her site and read the post, especially the "Editorial comments" section where she gives her two cents on what astronauts should be doing as far as outreach and PR are concerned. I agree with her 100% that the Astronaut Office would be well-served to embrace social networks and keep the public fully engaged in the lives of astronauts by regularly using them.