The Women of NASA
Meet Tina M. Bayuse, Pharm.D.
Clinical Pharmacist - Johnson Space Center
Like me, you can achieve what you set out to do with some hard work and determination. I saw a quote on a Post-It Note once, and I have taken it as my anthem:
"Dream to touch the stars, live to touch your dreams."
Who am I, and what do I do?
A career in pharmacy can be more than standing behind a counter and filling prescriptions at your local drug store.
I work for a company called Wyle Laboratories at Johnson Space Flight Center. I am a pharmacist for NASA. I help other scientists study how medications affect the body, both in space and on the ground. I also help the astronauts' doctors decide what medications the astronauts should use while they are in space. I am also the person who packs the medical kits that fly on the space shuttle and International Space Station. Finally, I spend part of everyday working in the Flight Medicine Clinic providing medicine to astronauts and their families.
I went to college at the State University of New York and the University of Maryland. During second year in college, I became interested in becoming a pharmacist. I was working at a local pharmacy as a clerk. I was fascinated by listening to pharmacists explain to customers what the medicines were and how to use them. In school, I had to take many science classes. I also learned about space medicine. In space, your body may react differently to medicines.
As far back as I can remember, I have wanted to be an astronaut. When I was eight years old, I wrote a letter to NASA. I offered to be the first kid in space. They did not take me up on this offer. This did not stop me. While I was in high school, I went to the Space Academy, like in the movie Space Camp. Today, I have been able to combine my job in pharmacy with my love for space.
What I like best and least about my job
I really like the idea of having something different to do everyday. I work on research projects in the mornings. In the afternoons, I work with astronauts and their families. Space Medicine requires a different way of thinking. What works on the ground might not always work in space. For example, you cannot pour cough medicine onto a spoon and take it in space, like you would if you got sick here on Earth. It is my job to think of new ways to make sure the astronauts stay healthy while they are in space.