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The Force is With Christine Redmond
July 20, 2011
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Jazz drumming, living a Mars existence in Utah, and working for Habitat for Humanity make intern Christine Redmond a force to be reckoned with!

Name: Christine Redmond
Age: 19
Hometown: Brighton, MI
Position: Summer Intern (Advanced Manufacturing)
School: Georgia Institute of Technology
Major: Aerospace Engineering

What is most interesting about your role here at Goddard?

I work in the Advanced Manufacturing Branch (Code 547) with several teams of interns. I am working on a couple of different projects this summer, so I’m doing different things every day. For example, I assist the Robotic Boot Camp in scheduling floor time in the shop and helping them design and prepare their robots. I also work with a team of interns in configuring an experimental testing and eletrohydrodynamic cooling loop to be used during a parabolic test flight. It has really been exciting so far!

Who is the most interesting, inspiring, or amazing person you have met or worked with at Goddard?

I can’t pick just one because I have met several inspiring people here at Goddard over the three summers during which I have been here. Andrea Schweiss, my mentor from my first summer here, is one of the inspiring people I have met. She has taught me so many things. The fact that she is a successful woman in the field in which I would like to eventually work means a lot to me. She commands attention, but she is also a great team player and a great person too. Her perspective has been invaluable to me and I am really grateful to her for having taught me so much.

Christine Redmond in Utah with the Mars Society. Photo of Christine Redmond in Utah with the Mars Society. Credit: C. Redmond
Matt Showalter, my mentor for the past two summers, is another great and inspiring person. He has done a lot of work in getting interns into our office. He really wants students to get involved and helps them pursue their dreams of engineering. He enjoys helping interns learn the trade. He encourages all of his interns to network and seek additional opportunities. I am so grateful for all that I have been able to learn from him over the past two summers.

Christine Redmond working for Habitat for Humanity
Christine Redmond working for Habitat for Humanity. Credit: C. Redmond

What lessons or words of wisdom would you pass along to somebody just starting their internship or coop at Goddard?

If someone offers you an opportunity, take it. But don’t wait for them to find you; go out and ask what you can do. People here are always willing to tell you about what they are working on, so soak in everything you can. Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions. It will help you grow.

What are your hobbies outside of the workplace?

I am a jazz drummer. I performed in an international band that toured Europe three summers ago. I also performed in musical productions at my school as well as in various community bands. In addition, as a member of my college’s Christian Campus Fellowship, I helped build houses in Kentucky with Habitat for Humanity.

Is there something surprising about you?

Most people don’t know that I have a twin. Another thing that I like telling people is that I am actually a distant cousin to Mark Hamill, the actor who played Luke Skywalker in the Star Wars film series. I think it is pretty fitting since I work here at NASA.

Is there some place in the world that you want to visit, or someplace you have been and want to go back?

I belong to a club at my school that goes on trips to Utah during which we pretend to live on Mars for two weeks. Spending those two weeks in Utah was awesome! It’s always a great time! I can’t wait to do it again next year! It’s a great getaway, but it’s all about what I want to do later in life. I get to spend time in space suits and it’s like I’m actually on Mars. I’m so happy I get to experience something like that because some people never get to the chance to do things like that. It is fun when people ask me where I’m going for spring break and I tell them Mars. It confuses them, but it always makes me laugh.

How would you describe yourself?

Lucky! I get to do something that I love every day. I’m always happy to come in and work on whatever my tasks are for the day. This isn’t just work for me, it’s a place where I can come and really exercise my talents in keeping with my interests.

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Grace Batterden
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.