Upon graduating from MIT, I was working on a website travel start-up with a friend. It had nothing to do with space. I had spent the past 8 years in the world of Aeronautics and Astronautics and at the time, I wanted to explore other passions – entrepreneurship, business, and traveling. But as it turns out, start-ups are hard, and (after a year and a half of development) we had completely failed to make the website the booming success we hoped it would be.
I had accepted defeat and began to polish up my resume, write cover letters, and throw myself right back into the job market. As I was scouring the web trying to find interesting job opportunities, I received an email from a TV production company. The executive producer was asking if I’d be interested in being the host of an educational Outer Space show.
Surely this was spam. It was completely random – like “oh, Do I want to promote STEM education by traveling the country and talking about how awesome space is? Yea, sure, that’s a real job that I could get.” So I ignored it. And it got pushed down the gmail line from the 20 other emails I received that day.
But after my MIT advisor and an office at WVU also contacted me telling me that the production studio had reached out to them, I started paying attention and the conversation with the studio began. And while I responded with “I’d be interested to hear more...”, in my mind I was like “OMG please let this be real!”
A few months later, the studio signed a deal with FOX to air the show and they brought me on as a producer as well.
Fun Fact: Apparently all major networks are mandated to air a minimum of 3 hours of educational/informational programming each week.
So now, I spend my days researching fun space things around the country to see, do, and talk about for an educational TV show. Also, I google things like “how to be a TV producer” and I watch YouTube videos of Bill Nye and Neil deGrasse Tyson. I honestly don’t really know what I’m doing, but I’m working with some really smart, talented people who are helping me along the way.
My goal is to leverage this platform to promote STEM education in a fun new way. I want to show a more relatable side of engineering and science to young students who perhaps don’t identify with the “nerd” stereotype that has been perpetuated throughout the years. And I want to highlight the ridiculously cool – paid for/free – opportunities that are available to STEM majors.
Those are the goals I hope I can accomplish. But then again, I’ve never produced a television show and I sure as hell never hosted one. So here’s to saying “yes” to an opportunity that I have no prior experience in because it sounds like the coolest job in the world.