Browsing Tag

aerospace

News

We Need More Women in Aerospace

Industry’s involvement can easily be done through mentoring future leaders recognizing that their contribution is instrumental in the outcome in terms of increasing the number of women who will be involved in this industry. One particular great example is Women In Aerospace Canada, an organization dedicated to expanding women’s opportunities for leadership and professional development as well as increasing their visibility in the aerospace community is creating opportunities for both women and men to realize the possibilities in this industry.

[ via The Huffington Post ]

News

An Aerospace Engineer’s Top 8 Lessons for Women in Tech

There is something powerful in harnessing the strength that comes from surviving an uncomfortable or unfamiliar situation. The key is to embrace those experiences and learn how to thrive in them. We are not defined by our experiences, but how we react to those experiences and the attitudes we choose to adopt. Transform tension into innovation, tackle challenge with an open mind, and take risks.

[ via The Next Women ]

News

Looking to the Stars for STEM-Learning Inspiration

So I was delighted when, earlier this year, my friend who works at Warner Bros. Pictures told me about an upcoming film starring Sandra Bullock as an engineer in the Sci-Fi film, Gravity, opening October 4. How perfect, I thought, to illuminate the power of STEM education by combining a strong female role model playing an engineer (Bullock plays Dr. Ryan Stone, a brilliant engineer on her first shuttle mission), with the natural wonder and awe that comes from images of outer space. Fresh out of the Venice Film Festival, Gravity is getting rave reviews.

[ via Wired ]

Profiles

STEMinist Profile: Jen Bailey, Aerospace Engineer, Federal Aviation Administration

Jen Bailey

Jen Bailey

Aerospace Engineer
Federal Aviation Administration, Office of Commercial Space Transportation



What inspired you to pursue a career in STEM?
My parents definitely encouraged me to go into engineering. I like to say that three fourths of my parents are engineers. (I have a stepmom and a stepdad too.) So engineering is in my blood.

What is the coolest project you have worked on and why?
In my previous job, I was a risk analyst for the launches out of Cape Canaveral. We looked at the possibility of rockets breaking up and raining debris onto the ground, blowing out windows from the explosion, and creating a toxic cloud. Events like that rarely happen, but our team made sure we were prepared. We made decisions to move groups of people or close certain parts of the Cape to mitigate the risk. In the history of the US space program, no one that wasn’t involved with the launch has been hurt by a rocket. It’s nice to know that I had a small hand in keeping that record clean.

Role models/heroes:
I look up to all the women who enter jobs where they are the minority (from engineers to construction workers to pastors). We need to look out for each other and support each other. My mom is a big role model for me. She worked as an industrial engineer for Harley-Davidson for more than 20 years.

Why do you love working in STEM?
I love working in STEM, because there are always new challenges and things to learn. I love sitting around a conference table and thinking, “We’re talking about launching a rocket into space, and this is our job!” And honestly, I love having the means to take care of my family. We can have a comfortable lifestyle, go on nice vacations, eat dinner out, and spoil my daughter a little.

Advice for future STEMinists?
Search out people that are interested in the same things as you. It’s much easier now with social media to stay connected to people with your same interests. But also, look for colleges that have a focus in the area you are interested in. I went to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Florida. I liked that it was a small school devoted to all things air and space. The professors stopped class so we could go outside to watch space shuttle launches. Walking around campus, everyone would stop and look up if we heard a plane going overhead. The connections I made there are still strong. And your professional network is one of the most important parts of your career.

Favorite website or app: I check Twitter and Facebook first thing everyday. I follow all my fellow space tweeps (spacetweepsociety.org).

Twitter: @astronut22

Profiles

STEMinist Profile: Cindy Mahler, Aerospace Engineer at The Boeing Company

Cindy Mahler

Cindy Mahler

Aerospace Engineer at The Boeing Company



What inspired you to pursue a career in STEM?
The Challenger Accident. I was in fifth grade when the Challenger Accident occurred and was just learning about the space program and had joined my school’s Young Astronaut’s Program. The day of the Challenger launch I was home sick from school (and bummed I was missing watching the launch live at school since it was too common of a thing to air on national television). I vowed that day I would go up and finish their mission for them and I’ve never looked back.

What is the coolest project you have worked on and why?
My first project out of college was to integrate the U.S. and Russian Astronaut training programs for the International Space Station’s Motion Control System. It was an incredible opportunity. I got to learn everything about the U.S. and Russian systems and work with a team to determine how to best teach the information to future space station crew members. From then on we taught the Motion Control System as an integrated system and not a U.S. or Russian only system. The project became a model that other Station Systems used to integrate their training programs.

Role models and heroes:
Captain Kirk

Advice for future STEMinists?
Follow your passion and dream big. Anything is possible.

Favorite website or app:
Angry Birds Space

Twitter: @txflygirl
Site: www.txflygirl.wordpress.com

Profiles

STEMinist Profile: Carolyn Bacqué-Carson, Aerospace Engineer/Quality Engineer

Carolyn Bacqué-Carson

Carolyn Bacqué-Carson

Aerospace Engineer/Quality Engineer in Propulsion for the Launch Services Division: Safety/Quality Engineering & Assurance Branch

Organization: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) – John F. Kennedy Space Center (KSC), FL (The comments and opinions expressed are my own and do not represent the views of NASA)

What inspired you to pursue a career in STEM?
When I was in elementary school I wanted to be as astronaut, seismologist, volcanologist or a geologist, but I had a real passion for space travel and wanted to work for NASA. While in high school I did some research on what kinds of degrees astronauts had and most of them were some type of engineer or pilot. That’s when I decided I wanted to be an engineer and starting looking into universities. Overall it was just a general passion for science from a young age.

What is the coolest project you have worked on and why?
The coolest projects I’ve worked on are launching the Space Shuttles and Ares I-X. Starting out at United Space Alliance (USA) and then moving to NASA in the hypergolic fluids groups I was very fortunate to work in the Launch Control Center (LCC) almost daily to maintain the system and also troubleshooting problems. Once I had gained enough knowledge and was certified in the system I got to sit in the LCC for pre-launch and then launch activities.

Then when Ares I-X came around I was selected to help refine the launch commit criteria, help build the software screens, refine the requirements, write the test requirements, work in a badge less environment and I sat on console during launch as the prime hypergolic/hydraulic power unit (HPU) system engineer. The coolest part was being able to crawl around in the AFT, Forward and mid body of the Orbiters, do testing in the Orbiter Processing Facility (OPF), Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) and launch Pads. I got to work with the hardware every day and interact with multiple different groups and systems. It was challenging and long hours at times but it really was a rewarding job that I miss today.

Role models and heroes:
My Mom, Kathie, is my role model. She showed me from a young age that women can have a great job and a family too. She is a nurse and worked long hours when my sister and I were younger but she always made time for us and made sure she was there for us. When I told her what I wanted to be and what I wanted to do she just supported me in my decisions and made sure that I got every opportunity to make those dreams happen. I am also part of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and there are so many amazing women in the organization that I look up to and aspire to be like in the future.

Advice for future STEMinists?
Science, technology, engineering and math can be challenging at times but working towards a goal, sticking with it and then making it happen is truly the most rewarding experience. There were times I thought I couldn’t make it through engineering school but I got help from my professors, friends and tutors to make sure I did the best I could do. Love what you do and have a passion for it, if you have that then you can make it through the perplexing times.

Try to find projects, clubs, and organizations to be part of. Having something to belong to and building your network can really make a difference when it comes to getting an internship, co-op, or job. Also, make sure you have a good support system either through family, friends or organizations; they can really make a difference in your life.

Favorite website or app:
SpaceflightNow
Angry Birds Space
Kennedy Space Center Media Archive
The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
Society of Women Engineers
Astronomy Picture of the Day

Twitter: @AstronautWoman