Why space? Need help in deciding what to do?
Learn from those currently working in the sector why they chose to work in the space industry and get practical advice.
|| Les Johnson || Organization
|| Job Title
|| Principal Investigator
|| Huntsville, AL
I am the Principal Investigator of the Propulsive Small Expendable Deployer System (ProSEDS) mission and the study manager for the Multiple Tethered Satellites for Ionospheric Studies mission. In addition, I am responsible for several of NASA�s concept definition efforts for future space missions using tethered satellites. The ProSEDS mission demonstrated electrodynamic tether propulsion of small spacecraft in low earth orbit.
B.A. Chemistry and Physics, Transylvania University, Kentucky; |
M.S. Physics, Vanderbilt University;
Business Program, International Space University
| Career Path:
I planned from a very early age (pre-high school) to work for NASA or in the space industry. I studied chemistry and physics, later emphasizing space physics in graduate school, to facilitate my career. Unfortunately, upon earning my Masters Degree, NASA was not hiring and I took a job near NASA MSFC working for General Research Corporation. While at GRC I made several professional contacts within NASA and was hired there 3 1/2 years later. I now work in the Program Development Directorate, which is our future projects office. Prior to my current tether-related activities, I led the design and definition of the $80M Magnetosphere Imager spacecraft and mission for NASA�s Office of Space Science.
I have always been fascinated by space and, fortunately, I have the technical skills that enable me to work in the field. Words of Wisdom Be tenacious and don�t give up! It took more than three years for me to get a job at NASA. I have been told on numerous occasions that I am successful in large part due to my optimism and �can-do� attitude. This formula can work for others as it has for me.
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