A New Dimension to Learning



Working here at the Space Operation Institute allows the students here to hit the ground running for anything that's NASA involved. What we have at the SOI is rare, where we are able to actually control or at least monitor a satellite in real time. The connection between Capitol College and Goddard is that we basically do everything that they are doing right here, just as students. You know, we're not in the educational program. We're here to do things and operate, that's true, but we're “training engineers for the future” is what basically it amounts to. They were interested in having a process to get more engineers into the space arena, and also to reach their educational outreach goals - to help colleges and universities educate the next generation of space engineers. Normally, they are assigned and have a mentor (or they are supervised by a mentor,) and they go through the same process that we have to train new engineers. This is no different than having a new hire than having an intern - they get to work side by side with NASA Goddard engineers, they attend meetings with the engineers, their opinions are asked, they are appreciated, they work as part of the team on the TRMM mission. My title is for the Space Operations Institute is the lead system administrator. Actually, what I go through and do is maintain the systems for software and hardware-wise to make sure the security standards are in place. I am in charge of testing where we have to look for any loopholes in any of the code and give it back as a product. And they have to rebuild it if anything is not correct I communicate with the engineers over at Goddard and I get all the regulations and requirements, and I give that to our development team. It's amazing. I learn so much that I would probably never learn anywhere else. It’s just overwhelming!