Meet a NASA Glenn Employee: Tammy Harrington
Thousands of talented, dedicated and passionate people work at NASA's Glenn Research Center in Cleveland. They are rocket scientists and engineers. They are researchers and physicists and chemists. They are aviation specialists, public affairs officers, administrative assistants, security officers, logistics managers and more. With countless specializations in myriad fields, the people of Glenn share one goal: working for the public in support of NASA's mission.
The diverse Glenn workforce is comprised of civil servants and on-site support contractors. Workers perform a large variety of different jobs at NASA Glenn. "My Job at NASA Glenn" is a series that introduces some of these workers. Learn about different employees and the interesting jobs they perform, and how their education prepared them to make unique and important contributions to NASA.
Enabling Technology Development and Demonstration Center Planning Office Lead
What that means:
I lead the planning and formulation activities for a program which will turn research into technologies that will enable space exploration. We focus on projects like human robotic systems, advanced in-space propulsion, cryogenic propulsion transfer and storage, fission surface power systems and others.
What I do:
I manage a multi-center team of 14 projects across eight NASA centers. This includes all aspects of project management that will take technologies from very early development stages through ground and flight development. This program will take our building block technologies and advance them to everyday use and applications.
The coolest / most interesting part of my job is:
Being able to lead and interact with the hundreds of NASA employees who work these technology development projects. Their dedication and enthusiasm is amazing as they press the boundaries to advance technologies that will enable us to explore beyond low earth orbit and even to Mars.
My favorite project that I have worked, or that I am working on, is:
Robonaut 2 is an astronaut assistant set to launch on space shuttle Discovery on STS-133. It will be the first humanoid in space whose initial goal is to help engineers learn how they operate and interact in space. The intent is to use this data to further advance the technology through upgrades and advancements that may allow Robonaut to one day perform repairs outside the space station and perform more detailed scientific tasks.
The accomplishment that I am most proud of is:
Working for NASA for 25 years. I have worked at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., NASA's Kennedy Space Center, Fla. and now NASA's Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, in positions of increasing responsibility in space flight development and operations.
A Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education helped me by:
By preparing, challenging and inspiring me to achieve my potential in helping to be a part of the innovative achievements of NASA.
Good advice for students, including STEM students, is:
Take advantage of any of the summer intern programs and outreach activities your school offers that focus on STEM. It will provide a background of understanding what can be accomplished with a STEM education. I am continually amazed at the contributions to NASA that I have had the privilege of being a part of. I wouldn't have that opportunity were it not for my pursuit of a STEM education.
-Edited by Tori Woods, SGT Inc.
NASA's Glenn Research Center