Thursday, December 24, 2009

Dreams of Flight Redefined

Terry Hill
Terry Hill once dreamed of being a pilot, but his ambitions have taken him beyond the friendly skies. Hill, now grown up, is working on the future of spaceflight for NASA. He’s helping to develop the next generation of spacesuits to send humans to the International Space Station, moon, Mars and beyond as part of NASA's Constellation Program.

“Never in a million years did I think I would be designing spacesuits for NASA as my job,” said Hill, the engineering project manager for the Constellation Spacesuit System at the NASA Johnson Space Center.

Prior to joining America's space program, the Texarkana, Texas native pursued his dreams of navigating the aerospace landscape. Hill got his start with a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Texas (UT) at Austin.

At UT Austin, Hill discovered an interest in orbital mechanics and was hooked on working with projects pertaining to space. He decided to take on graduate school at UT Austin and received his master’s in aerospace guidance, navigation and control theory.

“It’s just been a series of unexpected but good events that lead me down this path, and I have found myself in a totally different place than I thought possible,” Hill said.

Hill said his graduate school experience was completely different from his undergraduate studies. His graduate studies focused more on understanding advanced concepts rather than basic engineering. While working on his master’s degree, Hill jumped on a new and exciting opportunity: working for NASA JSC as a primary investigator on his educational advisor’s contract.

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