A Glendale Community College student is among 92 aspiring young scientists and engineers selected last week to join the National Community College Aerospace Scholars program and help design robotic rovers in an educational collaboration with NASA.
Torkom Pailevanian, 19, will join an elite group of community college students from across the country at the Johnson Space Center in Houston for a three-day, hands-on engineering experience starting May 9. It is designed to foster talent within science, technology, engineering and mathematics, known within education circles as STEM disciplines.
“It really caught my interest, and when this opportunity came up, I jumped right on it,” said Pailevanian, a student worker at the Glendale Community College Planetarium and an intern at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge. “I thought it would be interesting to learn about a new planet.”
The second-year student learned about the program from a classmate, and quickly set about assembling his application. He was then tasked with completing a four-part, web-based assignment in which he had to develop an exploratory mission to Mars.