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Count Elmdor
2008-Oct-14, 02:10 AM
Greetings Everyone,

Let me first apologize if this is the 100th post of this nature you've seen on this forum this month, as I am not a regular. Here goes:

I am one of the disaffected young(ish) people in the work force today, doing my 40 hours a week at my run-of-the-mill office job working for the company's bottom line and yearning for something more fulfilling. Something fairly specific, but still general enough to be kind of bewildering. What I do now is logistics for a frozen foods company, but what I want to be doing is working toward humanity's future in space. What little I can do in this area is what I would like to be my contribution to society.

What, and for whom, I am not too particular about. I could happily process product orders and book trucks all day and monitor inventories, as I do now, but man if it wouldn't be cool to be doing it for an outfit like Space X or Virgin Galactic, or one of any number of government agencies or companies that are a part of the collective endeavor of extending mankind beyond Earth.

So, my question is, where would be a good place to start for getting into the space industry (if that term applies)? Obviously, I have a resume and I can send it out to prospective employers; that is not the question. The question is what opportunities are there out there for someone who is not an engineer, not a scientist, but say a Bachelor of Economics or even someone from a background in Humanities? If private business is going to truly be a large part of our expansion into space in the coming decades, then surely business people are needed?

Perhaps there are members of this forum who have been able to make a living doing something related to space exploration? I would love to hear how you got into it, or are working toward doing so.

Peter B
2008-Oct-14, 12:05 PM
Count Elmdor

I can't answer your question, but good luck to you.

Larry Jacks
2008-Oct-14, 12:37 PM
You might want to start here (https://spacex.com/careers.php).

Our Hiring Needs
SpaceX is experiencing significant growth and opportunities are not limited to those listed in our database. SpaceX is primarily an engineering driven company and needs exist for mechanical, electrical, software and aerospace engineers interested in:
Rocket engine combustion
Turbo-machinery
Advanced structural design & analysis (composite and metal structures)
Avionics, guidance & control
Embedded real-time programming
Digital and analog electronics including RF electronics

SpaceX also has significant manufacturing operations and we look for Production Technicians interested in:


Launch operations
Composites manufacturing
Electronics assembly (PCB and wire harness)
Machining
Structural assembly
Propulsion systems assembly
Quality Assurance

There are currently a total of 81 open jobs.

It never hurts to give it a try. The worst that could happen is they say no. Good luck!

schlaugh
2008-Oct-14, 02:07 PM
NASA currently lists 74 openings. Go to the link and navigate your way to the search section. And good luck!
NASA - NASA Jobs (http://www.nasajobs.nasa.gov/)

PraedSt
2008-Oct-14, 02:50 PM
Good question Count, and best of luck to you!

Some old fashioned advice :)
Go to where the companies are, perhaps for a weekend, or even a week if you can spare the time. Ask questions, kick tyres, make contacts.
For example, if you wanted a financial job, it would be New York; a tech job, San Francisco.
Now I don't know if or where space jobs are clustered, but I'm sure you could find out. Mojave?

Good luck again..

mugaliens
2008-Oct-15, 08:56 PM
Nearly all entries into cutting edge endeavors happen as a result of one of two things: Either you wade in, creating your own job by finding a niche and filling it, or you're "noticed" due to exceptional and unparalleled talents.

Good luck!

Noclevername
2008-Oct-17, 11:54 PM
Think of it this way: A job in food distribution keeps an industrial civilization functioning, which allows us to develop new technologies and keeps us all alive long enough to get into space. Subsistence farmers don't have space programs. It's an indirect contribution, but you are contributing!

mugaliens
2008-Oct-19, 10:44 AM
Excellent point, Noclevername. Put simply, just by paying your taxes, you're contributing to our space exploration efforts.

If I'm not mistaken, however, Count Elmdor would like to leave his 9-5, 40hr/wk job, and work directly in the space industry, even if it's in a non-cutting edge, supporting role.

Have you considered applying for work at any of the space-related startups? Even older concerns, such as Boeing and General Dynamics routinely hire new folks to work in their space divisions.

Count Elmdor
2008-Oct-21, 06:56 AM
Thank you for the comments and advice, everyone. I'm going to redouble my efforts to find companies with space divisions and keep tabs on whatever positions they may have open. One thing I've always kept in mind that advisors told me is that it's always good to keep one foot in the job market and one foot in a steady gig. Maybe that golden opportunity will come along one day, if so, I mean to be paying attention for it!

novaderrik
2008-Oct-21, 08:38 AM
i don't know how he did it, but one of my cousins got a job with a NASA subcontractor that is working on the new Ares rockets- straight out of college, no less. and he isn't sweeping floors or washing windows- he's working on making the various systems linking the different stages accessible by actual humans while the thing is sitting on the launchpad.