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Star Stryder

Living in the Shadows of the Apollo Generation

3 Nov 2015, 04:50 UTC
Living in the Shadows of the Apollo Generation
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

I was born in December 1973, 1 year and a few days after the United States’ last crewed mission to the moon. I have been engaged in research astronomy since I was 17, and have spent the entirety of my career being one of the youngest in the room. I’m still called “young lady” in professional meetings, and teased for not remembering Carter (or Johnson or Nixon). While the millennials are coming up behind me, fighting to define new paths, my generation is still getting lost in the shadows of our light hogging senior peers. At some point, I keep expecting things to change as my generation becomes “senior”, but that change seems to be on hold – maybe permanently – for many (most?) of us. The reasons are complex and are steeped in the history of the industrial and educational complex that grew up around the Apollo landing. Today, I find myself worried that when that Apollo generation does retire, there won’t be a healthy, established community ready to fill their shoes; I’m just not sure those of us still waiting can wait that long.
This is the first in a 2-part series on the broken job pipeline. This ...

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