“I don’t think I will be getting an internship this summer,” is what I kept telling my boss at Embry-Riddle Admissions. “I applied to over 75 positions and over 30 different companies, and nothing came back!” I was preparing to stay at home for the summer and continue to work in the Admissions Office, despite the fact that I really needed an internship. That all changed when I decided to reach out to Sidus Space in Cape Canaveral, FL.
I remember being on the computer and stumbling across one company with a purple and black logo that had a satellite on it. I said to myself “I should look at their internship positions if they have any, this looks like a cool company!” I researched the website and watched some cool videos on the company’s goals and operations. I clicked on the “Careers” tab to look for positions. Sure enough, they did have internship positions available; however, their only position open at the time was for a finance internship. I decided to apply anyway because I would take any internship I could get at this point. I also e-mailed the company after applying to this internship just to introduce myself, attach a CSV/resume, and tell them what I am studying. Within a few hours, I received a call from one of the recruiters named Tina at Sidus Space. She told me she got my e-mail, was impressed with my resume, and sent me directly to the Vice President of the Mission Operations Department. I was so happy to hear that I had an interview with the Vice President of that department. I could finally have the chance to not only get an internship, but get an internship in the same field as my dream career is in: mission operations.
Interview day came and I was ready to talk to the company. After a short 30 minute meeting with a few company personnel, they were ready to set up a second interview as well. Things were looking great and I quickly jotted some notes down to prepare for my next meeting the following week.
Tina reached out to me to tell me that they hired a new Mission Operations Director and that I would be meeting with him now instead. I was fine with that and was open to meeting new people. The director I met with during my second interview was so knowledgeable and friendly. He worked at NASA Johnson Space Center as a Flight Director for 23 years! “I couldn’t ask for a better manager if I got this position,” I told myself. Soon after the meeting ended, they informed me that they would call me if they thought I was a good fit for the company.
After a short review of how the meeting went and a short period of time, I got the phone call: “We would like to welcome you to the Sidus Space team.”
These words rang in my head as the recruiter spoke them over the phone. I was jumping for joy at the fact I got an internship, and with weeks to spare! This internship started on June 1st, and I was told in April that I had got the position. I informed my Admissions boss that I finally found a company to intern for and that I would be back in the Fall.
Weeks leading up to the internship I had to fill out paperwork, sign agreements, and prepare for my training. I also had to set up an appointment with Career Services, and fast, to get credit for my summer experience. I didn’t know what to expect at the internship, so I went in open-minded and well-prepared. I brushed up on my math and science skills, prepared some professional outfits, and acquired some blank notebooks, as I knew I would be taking a lot of notes.
The process of securing my internship was lengthy and uncertain at first. With persistence, knowledge, and optimistic thoughts, I pursued my search even into late April, days/weeks before the spring semester ended. I recommend to other students like me not to give up. As a first-generation college student, I was also the first in my family to receive an internship like this. Nonetheless, every employee had nothing but positive things to say about me by the end of the summer. I persevered through everything that was thrown my way, defying the odds even when things looked bad.
Present day, it is the end of my internship, but Sidus Space offered me a job! I am now a Certified Flight Controller for our satellite, LizzieSat. Within the next few months, I will be working remotely while attending my fall classes at Embry-Riddle. Juggling both school and work will be a challenge, but it will prepare me for my career even more than my internship experience did. Always remember to shoot for the stars and dream big! You never know what would have happened if you didn’t.