Meet Our Scholars: Ian DesJardin

[Speaker: Ian DesJardin] I was a big Star Wars fan. I was a big Star Trek fan. These are the types of things that captured my imagination and that I thought were really interesting and really cool. So my dream is I want to fit myself into the make space easier for everyone. There's this broader movement of bring the costs down to orbit, make things easier to send to space, and I want to fit myself into where I think I can best make that happen. So I currently am an applicant for the Barry Goldwater Scholarship. If I receive this scholarship, I will be able to pursue my dream. Here at the Nanosatellite Laboratory, we're a group of about 50 to 60 undergraduate students who work under Dr. John Crassidis, and in broad strokes, what we work on is techniques to commercialize space. These projects are funded by the Air Force, they're funding by NASA. We get treated just like traditional contractors. We do the complete design. We build. We test. We actually do the operations. So we fly the satellites. At the end of the semester, we ship it down to Albuquerque where it goes to an Air Force base and has some last minute testing done on it. Then from there, it goes to Kennedy Space Center in Florida where it gets launched on a rocket, same types of rockets that they would send to the space station, same types of rockets that they would send astronauts up. While it launches, I'm going to sit back on the beach and watch it launch, and that's going to be the best feeling in the world.