Space Policy Institute Alumna Jenn Makins with Astronaut Sunita Williams
Space Policy Institute Alumna Stephanie Wan with Chinese Taikonaut Zhai Zhigang
BRITTANY BALCOM is a second year student at the Space Policy Institute. She graduated from Marshall University in 2010 with a BA in International Affairs and a minor in Political Science, with postbaccalaureate coursework in geophysics from the University of Kentucky. She has also studied Chinese at Shanghai International Studies University. Brittany has worked in the US Embassy in Singapore and as a program analyst at Davis Defense Group in Fredericksburg, VA. She has previously interned at NASA's Office of International and Interagency Relations, International Technology and Trade Associates, and the Space Policy Institute. She is currently an intern at Arianespace.
MIA BROWN is second year graduate student at the Space Policy Institute at the George Washington University where she concentrates in international space policy and risk management. She recently graduated with an M.A. in Historical Studies from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) where she completed her masters thesis on President Johnson's career in space policy throughout the developments and formalization of the 1967 Outer Space Treaty. Mia also received her B.A. in Political Science with a minor in History from UMBC. During her undergraduate career she studied European politics at the Anglo American University in Prague and intensive Chinese language studies at the Beijing Language and Culture University. Mia is the Managing Editor for the print edition of the Elliott School's academic journal, the International Affairs Review, and serves as Vice-Chair of the Science and Technology Global 2015 Consortium. She's worked at various organizations in Washington, DC and abroad, such as the Office of International and Interagency Relations at NASA HQ, Arianespace, and the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs in Vienna, Austria, along with the International Bureau at the FCC. Currently, Mia is the Staff Assistant at the Space Policy Institute.
THOMAS CHINICK is a second year student at the Space Policy Institute. He graduated from the University of Denver in June of 2013 with a B.A. in International Studies and Asian Studies, for which he completed a thesis on coping and healing in the aftermath of Hiroshima. While at DU, Tom founded a student-led environmental awareness group, and studied at Kansai Gaidai in Japan for a semester. Since beginning his studies at the Space Policy Institute, he has interned at Aerospace Industries Association, Satellite Industry Association, conducted research for Dr. Henry Hertzfeld at SPI, and is currently interning at NASA's Office of International and Interagency Relations. Tom is also conducting research on the Super 301 trade agreement with Japan.
ZACHARY HESTER is a second year student at the Space Policy Institute. He graduated summa cum laude from North Carolina State University with a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering and a B.S. in Political Science in 2011. At N.C. State, Zack was a both a Park and a Benjamin Franklin Scholar. The Benjamin Franklin program is a dual degree program integrating technology and science with the social sciences and humanities. His paper entitled “U.S. Opinion on Nuclear Power: Analysis and Perspective” received the N.C. State School of Public and International Affairs award for best senior seminar paper. In the summer of 2008, he studied at Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, China. Zack has interned on the House of Representatives Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics and is currently a business technology consultant in Deloitte Consulting’s Federal Practice.
NIKOLAI JOSEPH is a second year graduate student at the Space Policy Institute. He holds a BS from the University of New Mexico where he majored in Applied Mathematics and minored in Astrophysics. While at UNM, Nikolai worked in a biophysics laboratory and co-authored two papers super resolution imaging theory and techniques, published in Nature Methods and Biophysics Journal. He spent time with an economic development nonprofit before starting his current role at Mathematica Policy Research. His policy interests include: commercial space development, advanced energy concepts, and strategic long term planning.
KATE MCGINNIS is a first year ISTP student focusing on Space Policy. She graduated with a bachelors and masters in mechanical engineering from Cornell University in 2008 after working on the student satellite team, CUSat, which launched in 2013. She has since worked in the aerospace industry in California and the DC region. Her goal is to learn more about the policy considerations that drive the space industry in the US and the world. She is particularly interested in science satellites and the interactions between civil, military, and international space powers concerning the resulting data.
DEVIN OSTING is a first year student at the Space Policy Institute. He graduated from Western Washington University in 2009 with a B.A. in Political Science/Philosophy/Economics, where he was active in intercollegiate debate. For the last three years, Devin has worked at LMG, a public affairs firm, working on aviation issues. Before that, he worked on political campaigns in Washington state, including Senator Patty Murray’s. He is interested in the commercial and civil sector space sectors, and the policy challenges that new uses of space creates.
RAPHAEL PERRINOis a second year student at the Space Policy Institute. He graduated from James Madison University in 2009 with an M.S. in Technical and Scientific Communication and currently works for The Tauri Group as an Aerospace Analyst in support of the Strategic Investments Division of the Office of the Chief Financial Officer at NASA. In 2010, he co-founded a STEM-centered non-profit organization, Friends of Arlington's David M. Brown Planetarium. He led online operations for the non-profit and helped raise over $430,000 to save the planetarium from closure. He currently serves on the Board of Directors, coordinating speaking engagements, NASA star parties, and monthly public programs. In 2011, he founded saveJWST, leading a successful grassroots effort to mobilize support and restore funding to the James Webb Space Telescope. In August 2014, Perrino was published in the conference proceedings of the AIAA Space and Astronautics Forum and Exposition (SPACE 2014) and presented “Is JFK-Style Leadership the Catalyst?” at the conference in San Diego, California.
TRENT SCHINDLER is a second year student at the Space Policy Institute. Trent graduated with a B.S. in Physics in 1995 from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where he performed research in the area of high-pressure physics. He went on to receive an M.S. in Meteorology from Penn State University in 2000, with an interdisciplinary concentration in the fields of planetary atmospheres, exoplanets, and astrobiology. Since graduation Trent has worked in the area of scientific animation and visualization. His work has appeared widely in print, broadcast, and Web media, including among others Nature, PBS NOVA, Scientific American, and CNN. Trent is currently a member of the Scientific Visualization Studio at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, where he creates visualizations based on remote-sensing datasets from Earth science missions.
JORDAN SOTUDEH is a second year student at the Space Policy Institute. He studied at La Sorbonne and New York University, where he received a B.A. in International Relations (Honors), Anthropology, French, a minor in Creative Writing and a certificate in Political Economy, graduating magna cum laude in 2012. His thesis paper, published in Inquiry, uses statistical analyses to test the effects of the Internet on antigovernment demonstrations around the globe. Jordan has worked with CyberDissidents.org, iSpaces cloud computing, MaisonRouge artists in Paris, Belize Valley Archaeological Reconnaisance, LitWorld grass-roots education, IMUNA, and currently serves as Researcher for the 2014 Space Security Index as well as in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy (OUSD(P)), Space Policy.
SPI Director, Scott Pace testifies in front of the Senate Commerce, Science, & Transportation committee on U.S. Human Exploration Goals and Commercial Space Competitiveness. His testimony is available online.
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