Name State Institution Project
Matthew Dunne New York Manhattan College Undergraduate Student Research Program
State: New York
Institution: Manhattan College
Academic Discipline: Mechanical Engineering
Project Name: Undergraduate Student Research Program
Program Participation: Research Interest: In the spring of 2011, I was lucky enough to fulfill my dream of working for NASA via an internship through the Undergraduate Student Research Program at Johnson Space Center. As a NASA employee, I am particularly interested in research pertaining to Mission Control Center operations. This is important because real-time engineering decisions must be made constantly by all those involved at Mission Control in order to ensure mission success. My main project was the design of a software tool which Mission Control personnel use to generate a graphic of an approaching ISS visiting vehicle which can calculate angular offsets and save data for trend monitoring.
Biography: As a young child I saw math, science and engineering as an exciting way to understand the world in which we live. I realized that all man-made improvements were a direct result of the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.
Today, as a young adult, my feelings toward STEM and the importance of same has not changed. As a NASA intern I used STEM to perform all of my duties. When a particular task was completed using science, technology, engineering or mathematics, I felt a great sense of accomplishment. It felt amazing using the skills I learned throughout my educational career and apply them to real world problems.
I feel that many young people have some natural interest in STEM fields. Whenever I am in a conversation with a younger person, I usually ask them about their interests. I then find a way to apply their interests to STEM using specific examples of how math and engineering played pivotal roles in how the particular things they are interested in came to be.
When talking with my peers I site specific interesting facts pertaining to STEM and the space industry. I find that people my age are more inclined to use sources such as the internet to further their understanding of STEM, should they desire to do so.
There are many reasons why I would like to be a NASA Student Ambassador. I feel confident I can do an excellent job in communicating to young people, as well as my fellow peers, about the Space Agency and what it does. I consider myself an above average communicator, whether it be in person, on the phone, or via the internet. Humbly, I also feel I am a likeable person and someone who will well represent NASA.
I always strive to be respectful, trustworthy and hard-working. These are the characteristics I value and what I believe are the reasons I have come this far in my life.
I feel that a large majority of people in this country have little knowledge about current NASA activities and missions. This is a shame, because the American Space Program needs the nation’s full support in order to continue their legacy of being leaders in space exploration.
Therefore, I want to be a NASA Student Ambassador so I can use my communication skills in order to help generate public interest in all NASA activities.
I am ready, willing and able to perform all the duties associated with being a NASA Student Ambassador, such as interacting with NASA affiliates, blogging, polling and attending various events. After college, I hope to start a career at NASA. I am completely devoted to this organization and everything for which it stands. I plan on using the NASA Student Ambassador program to further my passion and understanding of science, technology, engineering and mathematics as well as the National Aeronautics and Space Agency.
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[EDITOR NOTE: I put in the paragraphs. Too hard to read as a big glomp of text. Appologies in advance if it’s not right.
Dunne, Matthew [MC????]
[JR: While NASA would be a hard sell to this fat old white guy injineer, I’m glad my fellow future alum finds it motivating.]
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