As a senior software engineer working on Orion, I am responsible for software/hardware integration and testing to ensure all the spacecraft’s computer commands perform as expected for America’s next generation spacecraft destined for deep space.
Working with bits and bytes all day is much cooler than you might think. I get to simulate Orion missions almost every day, just as if we’re flying in space. I test the systems from launch, through flight and back to Earth. If I find any issues, I resolve them and retest to ensure a smooth and safe flight for our future crews.
As a young girl growing up in Gaza City, Palestine, watching the space shuttle takeoff and come back to Earth always amazed me. That’s what inspired me to become part of the space program. I came to Houston to pursue my degree in engineering from the University of Houston at Clear Lake. Soon after graduation, I began work on the Space Shuttle Program. When the shuttle retired I saw Orion as the new beginning for the next human spaceflight program, and I wanted to be part of it.
My advice to young girls around the world: Always have a dream, dream big, and work really hard to make your dream come true. Mine did.