I would like to be sent to space to research planets

I am 12 years old and am looking into the future of what I would want to do for a living when I grow up. I am looking into all different types of engineering, but one of the main ones I am interested in is Aerospace engineering. I am looking into and researching all different types of engineering. When I figured out I could write a question on this website to an actual aerospace engineer, I was very excited. If I became an Aerospace engineer, what are the possibilities of me being able to work in the ISS, or be sent into space for researching other planets, satellites, or space itself? Also, what are the pros and cons of this job? And if I do want to look into this, what kind of things will I need to know/study for? Thank you so much if you get the chance of reading this. I know you probably have hundreds of other questions, but i really appreciate you reading mine. -Amy :)
posted by Amy on January 30, 2016

Answer by Elizabeth Keller Bierman

Hi Amy,  Thanks for the question.  Honestly, the possibilities are endless.  When I was your age, I wanted to be an astronaut so that is why I became an aerospace engineer and then when I was in college I learned there was so much more opportunities in engineering.  I got involved with avionics on aircraft and got hooked.  Right now I design navigation equipment for commercial aircraft.  I do have friends that work on the ISS and help train astronauts.  I met the President of Space X and they are hiring lots of engineers to build the new space landing system to take astronauts back into space and eventually Mars.  Lots of possibilities ahead...Pros of the job are everyday is different and for me to fly on a plane for a vacation or business trip and know that my equipment is on the plane getting us there safe is pretty cool.  The con is our projects are really long.  3, 4, 5 years long.  Its not like a new iPhone that comes out every year.  If you go into engineering, you will take a lot of math and physics in college before your aerospace engineering courses.  In middle school and high school, take the classes that get you ready for college and ones that interest you.  I like answering questions so don't be afraid to ask more!!  Take care,  Elizabeth