Summer Interns Return to IV&V

Year round intern and NEAP assistant Sarah Layman has been with the program since 2011. She works with the STEM Initiatives Lead to help with the summer college and high school interns.

It’s summer intern season here at NASA’s IV&V Program and for 22 college and high school interns, this means an experience they won’t forget.

The high school interns represent high schools located all over West Virginia, while the college interns represent colleges located throughout the entire United States. The six college interns here this summer represent the program’s 4th class of the 10-week long Summer College Internship Program (SCIP), and the 16 high school interns are the program’s 18th class of the 8-week longNASA IV&V Engineering Apprenticeship Program (NEAP). Both internship programs provide professional work experience, exposure to IV&V efforts and an opportunity to experience real engineering and financial management careers. For one project mentor, the work with his two high school interns has already proven to be a positive experience.  

“They are absorbing all this technical information faster than I could have ever imagined and are already blowing away my expectations for what we will have achieved toward the end of this summer,” Space Flight Design Challenge OC-Flight-1 project mentor Steven Hard said.  

The intent of the NASA IV&V Space Flight Design Challenge is to provide a STEM opportunity for students to engage in the design and fabrication of a space-based system so these skills become more common for the next generation of engineers and scientists. The internship project was designed to given students the opportunity to join the OC-Flight-1 experienced engineering team and engage in designing system requirements and architectures as well as solving specific mission challenges. As part of this team, high school interns Tori Snyder and Eric Post have and will continue to access hands-on experience that includes subsystem component/payload integration, acceptance level testing, and amateur radio communications.  

summer interns


Summer interns

Pictured above, Snyder and Post test individual solar cells for continuity and the overall solar panel’s voltage output when placed perpendicular to a high intensity light source. Pictured below this, mentor Hard and intern Post test transceiver communication with the project’s ground station handytalkies (HTs) that are connected to a SmartPad running an app to decode the packet.  

Another ongoing summer internship project is the Energy Efficiency project mentored by David Sheldon and David Dial. This project gives college intern Jack Wilkins the opportunity to work with the program’s facility team to explore ways to increase energy efficiency here at the program. Wilkins will also be researching industry best practices for efficient lighting, ran water collection systems and will submit his findings in a report at the end of the summer. Pictured below, mentor Sheldon and intern Wilkins go over building plans and operations.


Summer interns

In addition to this professional experience, the NEAP interns will have the opportunity in August to present their projects to NASA Headquarters. The interns and mentors are listed below. 

College Interns

Nick Ohi – Mentor: Ricky Forquer 
Jaclyn Hobbs – Mentor: Ricky Forquer 
Logan Smithson – Mentor: Todd Gauer
Chris Gatto – Mentor: Scott Kinney
Jack Wilkins – Mentor: David Sheldon
Michael Solomon – Mentor: Jerry Sims
High School Interns 

Matthew Gramlich and Jonathan Lister – Mentor: Ricky Forquer
Michael Fouts and Esha Halabe – Mentor: Ryan Starn
Tori Snyder and Eric Post – Mentor: Steven Hard
Rachel Tyras and Trey Duckworth – Mentor: Rick Hess
Robert Hewitt – Mentor: Don Kranz
Wyatt Kitzmiller and Evan Lynn – Mentor: Joelle Spagnuolo-Loretta
Cortney Mercer and Bertalan Czinege – Mentor: Jerry Sims
Eric Tennant and Ryder Huggins – Mentor: Scott Kinney
Cole Frasher – Mentor: Stephen Driskell

Congratulations are due to these interns and a special thanks to the program for supporting these internship initiatives. Here’s to a great summer!

Sarah Layman
NEAP Assistant
NASA’s Independent Verification & Validation Program

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