NASA Ames Research Center
Who I Am and What I Do
I’m a Research Scientist with the SETI Institute and operate a
lab at NASA Ames Research Center. My activities focus on experimental
modeling of chemical processes occurring on Mars and on the development
of instruments and sensors for characterization of these processes.
Areas of expertise
Planetary science/exploration is a multidisciplinary field. Aside from
a strong background in science, engineering knowledge is extremely useful
How I first became interested in this profession
I became interested in graduate school, thanks to my thesis advisor.
What helped prepare me for this job
School plus a lot of on-the-job experience.
I’ve always admired Olympic Athletes.
My education and training
I first received a B.S. in chemistry followed by a high school teaching
credential. After two years working in the education division and the
National Science Foundation, I enrolled in M.S. program at San Francisco
State University. Upon graduating with a degree in chemistry, I started
working at NASA Ames (thanks to my graduate advisor’s contacts
and recommendation) as a scientist with the SETI Institute. I received
my PhD in chemistry from Leiden University while working at SETI/NASA
What I like about my job
The work is fascinating.
What I don't like about my job
The endless pursuit of funding.
My advice to anyone interested in this occupation
Find a nice, well contected graduate advisor or mentor.