Online From Jupiter 97
My name is Nagin Cox and I am a systems engineer on NASA's Galileo mission to Jupiter. I work in Pasadena, California at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). JPL runs the Galileo mission for NASA. I work with teams of people on the Galileo project to design the spacecraft activities during the 11 orbits of Jupiter that Galileo will complete by the end of 1997. The thing I like best about my current job is how many different things I get to learn about flying a spacecraft to another planet.
I have always known that I wanted to work for the space program. As a kid, I tried to figure out what kind of schooling I would need so I could work for NASA. I did some research and found out that military background can be a good place to start. So, I applied for an Air Force scholarship to college. I also knew I needed to study math and science. Both of those subjects are very difficult for me but I worked very hard.
In 1986, I graduated from Cornell University with a BS in Engineering
and a BA in Psychology and was commissioned as an officer in the US Air
Force. I had a wonderful time in the Air Force and I was able to get a
great deal of experience in military space systems while I worked for
US Space Command. The Air Force also sent me to get a Master's in Space
Operations Engineering. I was having so much fun that I did not want to
leave but I knew I really wanted to work in interplanetary exploration
and I started at JPL in 1993.