For somewhat lady rising up in Colombia within the Eighties, a science profession with NASA could have appeared about as possible as setting foot on a faraway planet. As of late, nonetheless, Diana Trujillo is an aerospace engineer.
In truth, she leads a 45-person staff on the NASA laboratory that’s chargeable for the robotic arm of the newest Mars rover.
NASA/JPL-Caltech, illustration of the Perseverance rover touchdown
How did Diana go from merely dreaming in regards to the cosmos to truly exploring it? That’s a story of perseverance that was, maybe, written within the stars.
Born in 1983, whilst a younger lady Diana was sure of her ardour for science. However she doubted how far she’d have the ability to rise in a male-dominated subject. Destiny stepped in when her dad—pondering having a second language may broaden his daughter’s horizons—supplied to ship her to reside with an aunt in Miami.
Solely 17 years previous on the time, she took him up on it.
With simply $300 to her title, Trujillo took a collection of housekeeping jobs to place herself via Miami Dade School. Along with studying English, she studied aerospace engineering. It wasn’t simple. Generally she needed to take six buses simply to get to class. Different days she was cleansing bogs to assist pay her approach via her research. However she didn’t complain.
“I noticed every part coming my approach as a possibility,” Diana informed CBS Information. “I didn’t see it as: ‘I can’t consider I’m doing this job at night time, or “I can’t consider that I’m cleansing a rest room proper now.’ It was simply extra like, ‘I’m glad that I’ve a job and I should purchase meals and have a home to sleep… ’”
Then got here one other life-changing second for Trujillo. One among her professors casually talked about they have been really acquainted with an astronaut. Realizing she was “only one particular person away from figuring out an astronaut” was all it took to impress Diana’s profession targets.
Trujillo continued together with her research. Changing into the primary Hispanic girl to be admitted to the NASA Academy, she did so effectively she was considered one of solely two college students to obtain a job supply from the distinguished establishment.
A narrative of perseverance
Whereas on the NASA Academy, she was launched to robots knowledgeable Brian Roberts. Recognizing her potential, he invited Trujillo to hitch his NASA area robotics analysis staff on the College of Maryland, the place she went on to earn her Bachelor’s diploma in Aerospace Engineering in 2007.
Later that yr, she turned a staff member at NASA’s Goddard House Flight Heart. Since then, Trujillo has worn many hats at America’s area company, together with as Mission Lead for the Curiosity Rover in 2014—for which she received the nod as one of many 20 most influential Latinos within the Know-how Business.
A voice for everybody
Diana hasn’t stopped there. This February, when the Perseverance rover landed on the floor of Mars, it was accompanied by commentary from Trujillo in what turned NASA’s first-ever Spanish-language transmission.
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She adopted up that coup by internet hosting the company’s first-ever Spanish language broadcast, Juntos perseveramos (Collectively we Persevere), which has since gone on to rake in additional than 2.5 million hits on YouTube.
Maybe unsurprisingly, Trujillo has gained quite a few awards in her subject, most lately, the Congress of Colombia’s order of benefit Policarpa Salavarrieta.
Encouraging others to achieve for the celebs
Alongside together with her ongoing scientific endeavors, Diana Trujillo continues her mission to guide by instance, encouraging ladies from marginalized backgrounds to pursue careers in STEM fields.
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If it takes a rocket to shatter the glass ceiling, so be it. Diana’s personal story is proof that simply past that barrier lies a complete universe of alternatives ready for anybody prepared to work laborious sufficient to achieve for the celebs.
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