Center Snapshot: Sandra Myers
Image above: Sandra Myers has worked for the Office of Education since August of 2006. Credit: NASA/Sean Smith
By: Denise Lineberry
Sandra Myers believes in the Golden Rule, and she has enforced a few other rules along the way. Myers, program manager of the NASA Graduate Student Researchers Program (GSRP) and the NASA Postdoctoral Program (NPP), once was a substitute teacher and kindergarten teacher.
To follow, she spent hours volunteering in different capacities, worked as a religious education coordinator, a job developer, an internship coordinator and then an assistant director of career services for Hampton University and the assistant director of corporate recruitment and career counselor at Christopher Newport University.
All of those positions prepared Myers for her career at NASA Langley, which began in 2006 when she was hired by Crewestone Technologies Inc.
The two programs she manages keep her busy with higher education and research on a national, even international, scale.
GSRP is a NASA-wide fellowship program for graduate study leading to masters or doctoral degrees in science, mathematics and engineering related to agency research and development. NPP offers one to three-year fellowship opportunities for postdoctoral fellows to engage in ongoing research projects at a NASA center, headquarters or a NASA-affiliated research institute.
“My main responsibilities are soliciting, receiving and processing GSRP and NPP applications and confirming acceptances for participants selected," she said. "I work with research advisors and process funding support documents and foreign national and U.S. security documents of applicants.
"I also maintain a database and files, coordinate and plan orientations, workshops and visits and update and revise GSRP and NPP Web site research opportunities. I process program support documents, recruit students at career fairs, information sessions and seminars and provide additional support to other higher educational programs.”
All of that work is rewarding for Myers, because she witnesses the impact it has on NASA’s success.
“These individuals are responsible for writing abstracts and proposals, for publishing and performing research and for patents while participating in research here,” Myers said. “The research performed by the students and fellows in these programs impacts NASA’s future as well as the public’s future in general.”
Responsibilities are something that Myers knows she can handle, in or away from work.
“I have been involved in a military life since I was born. My father was a non-commissioned officer in the Air Force, and I am married to a retired Air Force officer, who is also a physician,” Myers said. “My husband and I are the proud parents of two beautiful, college-educated daughters who live in Haymarket, Va., and Virginia Beach respectively.”
Myers furthered her own education “after an 18-year hiatus from education and raising my family.” She obtained her Master of Arts in Education degree from George Washington University in Washington, D.C.
Her husband's involvement with the military and medicine prepared Myers “to be a very independent and organized person and to pass this on to my daughters.”
And Myers' mother passed this on to her.
“My mother believed in saying a kind word to everyone and helping other people who were less fortunate,” Myers said. “She was director of the Mid-Cumberland Community Action Agency until her retirement, and as a result of this position, she was responsible for helping countless people in their daily struggles in life. Not only was she passionate in her job, but also displayed this in her community work as well.”
For enjoyment, Myers loves to visit her two grandsons, age 5 and 13 months, who live in Northern Virginia.
“Also, my favorite things to do outside of work are to visit interesting places, go on sight-seeing tours, go to concerts, shows, festivals of all types, trips and participate in volunteer work with my church, sorority and the civic organization to which I belong,” Myers said.