I am GSDO: Yves Lamothe
Lead Systems Engineer
Ground Systems Development and Operations Program
My name is Yves Lamothe, and I am the lead systems engineer for the Ground Systems Development and Operations (GSDO) Program here at Kennedy Space Center.
Most recently, I led the execution of the preliminary design review for the program, also known as the PDR. The PDR is a review that ensures that all of the program requirements are being met to develop a safe and efficient ground systems infrastructure to process and launch NASA's next generation of rockets and possible commercial entities as well.
I've worked at Kennedy for eight years. I moved from the Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio to Florida in 2005 and have been at Kennedy ever since.
The coolest part of my job is being part of a team that is responsible for completely revamping Kennedy, almost as if we're turning the center into a rocket airport, so to speak, where NASA can bring their rockets and other commercial entities can bring their rockets so that they can launch into outer space. I'm looking forward to the day that we can have multiple launches, as we did in the shuttle days launching on a regular basis here at Kennedy. And that will not be achievable without GSDO successfully accomplishing its mission.
The achievement I'm most proud of during my time in GSDO is all the technical milestones that we have been able to accomplish under tighter schedules and budget. These challenges are not only those that GSDO faces, but NASA as an agency continues to face. We tend to strive together as a team. We're able to come together, figure a way to make things happen, regardless of the challenges that NASA and GSDO as a program face.
I started my career at the Glenn Research Center and had the opportunity to work on many research projects. Then I came to Kennedy and spent some time in the engineering design organization working on designs for GSDO. The more I found out what was going on with the program, the more I felt that I could contribute to NASA's mission to revamp the Kennedy infrastructure to be a 21st Century Launch Complex to launch NASA's next generation of rockets. It was exciting and I wanted to be part of the team that would be responsible for doing that for the agency.
I first became interested in space during my time in the military. I was actually working on becoming a pilot in the U.S. Marines. While I was working on my college degree in the military, I got a job offer at Glenn Research Center where I had the opportunity to work on wind and ice research tunnels, and different laser projects. With that I became more interested in the space industry and things that were required in order to build and launch a rocket, and the more I worked on these types of projects the more interested I became in working in the space industry.
My hometown is Cleveland, Ohio. I graduated from Cleveland State University with bachelor degrees in computer science and electrical engineering. I also have a master's degree in systems engineering and management from Walden University in Maryland.
My advice to a student looking to pursue a career in my field, which is engineering, is to make sure that he or she co-ops. Make sure you have the opportunity to work with multiple companies. For example, if you're a chemical engineer, you can work in biomedical, petroleum, food administration, pharmaceuticals, and all those different talents and skills are all that NASA actually uses. We need food in space. We need to understand pharmaceuticals because we have to keep our astronauts healthy and safe. We need biomedical, because we need to monitor their health. So make sure that you have the opportunity to work or internship in different companies so that you find what your skill is and pursue it.