Rose Ferreira: From Living On The Street To Becoming An Astrophysicist at NASA
The USA has often been considered to be the ‘Land where dreams come true by the rest of the world. Now, while it is true that the country is not exactly paradise on this planet, there are too many rags-to-riches stories that would make one clamor to go there and explore the opportunities. One such individual who found her life to be completely changed was Rose Ferreira.
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This astronomy student from Arizona State University, and an intern at NASA, would never fathom how she was catapulted into success on the basis of her skill- and just a teeny bit of luck.
Rose Ferriera grew up in the troubling and chaotic environment of the Dominican Republic and initially did not have any access to school education. Soon, her family moved to New York- which would seem like a move to Heaven, except that New York can often get even more dangerous to an outsider. Being a New Yorker, Ferreira had to encounter violent areas in the city- was also homeless for a certain amount of time. Although she did receive an education- it rarely felt like enough. And yet- her desire to explore space never went away. Living in a poor country like the Dominican Republic implies that she had to undergo major power cuts. Therefore, she had to find solace amongst the stars- when the land around her was dark.
Rose Ferreira Dared To Dream- And Now She Is An Intern With NASA
Later, this budding astrophysicist arrived at university- but life wasn’t smooth sailing before that. Rose had been working as a home health assistant to make ends meet. She also managed to study through the EJA, and also had to deal with cancer treatment. After she finally got enrolled at ASU, she received the biggest news of her life- she had managed to land herself as an intern at NASA- which had always been her dream. Maybe she never knew what NASA was as a child, but the space beyond always beckoned her. And today, she has aspirations of being an astronaut. This desire reared itself after she saw the image of an entire field of galaxies through the James Webb telescope back in July.
Rose Ferreira recently stated that she was simply grateful for being able to contribute in some meaningful form to the efforts of the team inside NASA. Since she was at the center of the audience when the team released the images of Deep Field, it brought something profound inside her. She mentions being in a state of shock for at least a week. The largest space science telescope to have been ever launched, Webb, played quite a major role in her internship. For the entirety of the summer, she interned at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. She also went on to deal with a series of live news interviews for Webb’s first images, as well as the multimedia tasks that were an integral part of the Spanish-language communications program of NASA.
One of the highlights of Rose’s internship, for her, would be recording a voice-over in Spanish for a This Week At NASA video. Later, Rose Ferreira also went on to serve as a major panelist at one of the events that were organized for the Minority University Research and Education Project. Although Rose’s big dream is of being an astronaut, her short-term goal involves getting a Ph.D. But one wouldn’t be wrong to assume that the internship that she landed also brought her a passion for sharing space science with the larger public. Her many interactions with Dr. Michelle Thaller, a Goddard astrophysicist, and host of the Webb broadcasts, simply exacerbated that interest.
Rose Ferreira has also expressed her interest in NASA’s Artemis program, which would put her directly with her interest in the Moon. This program will see the space agency sending astronauts to create a long-term presence of humans on and around the Moon, which could be used for further research.
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Image Credits: NASA.gov