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Interest in the aerospace industry

May 7, 2021

Pravalika Balajivaishnavi

As our knowledge and curiosity of space expand, so do space-related job opportunities. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projected that 8,600 job openings for space scientists will exist from the years 2014 to 2024, and 171,900 job openings for engineers will be present in the same timeline. More than 50 years ago, we did not have much technology for space exploration. Now that technology is rapidly improving, students have gotten more interested in space. Senior physics major Rachel Barron said that she was inspired to learn more about space exploration because of a particular rover launched by NASA.

“I remember when [the] Curiosity [rover] landed and my school did a presentation on it,” Barron said. “This is a highlight in my memory of when I began having an interest in space exploration.”

Barron’s school project inspired her to delve deeper into the field of space. The curiosity of students like her is the reason why space exploration is growing. With all the achievements that NASA and many other space agencies have made, the newer generation is finding a fascination with space.

Senior physics and math major Jodi McLennan has a similar situation that sparked her interest in space. She joined a summer project that attempted to propose a plan of Mars settlement, and her experience from the project helped her in choosing her future job.

“These personal experiences made me feel that pursuing space exploration would make me part of something much larger than myself, which is an important attribute I want in a future career,” McLennan said.

Similar to Barron and McLennan, STEM classes can expose students to the field of aerospace engineering and encourage them to pursue that path. The knowledge gained from the projects like Voyager and Curiosity inspires people to join this industry. The human fascination to gain knowledge will never end, and neither will the curiosity of space.

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