Video: NASA’s Chief Technologist Discusses STEM and the Agency’s Future
Matthew Greenwood posted on July 09, 2018 |
NASA aims to be the architect of a global space exploration endeavor, and will rely on STEM experts ...

Douglas Terrier, NASA’s chief technologist, spoke with at the USA Science and Engineering Festival about engaging students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields—and what NASA anticipates for our rapidly changing technological future.

Terrier discussed his job and how important STEM is going to be for the workforce of tomorrow. “We need a workforce that can be competitive, and one that can not only respond to those changes, but also create those changes and invent that future,” he said.

He also spoke about the teacher in his rural Jamaican school who inspired him to pursue a STEM career.

Douglas Terrier, NASA chief technologist, discusses his job, growing up in rural Jamaica and the need for STEM grads.

Terrier talked about how NASA’s work could inspire STEM students.

The agency is building the first spacecraft designed for interplanetary travel. NASA also continues to help develop the commercial aerospace industry through partnerships, mentoring and investment. Terrier said that NASA has a responsibility to foster and grow the private-sector aerospace industry.

The agency’s initiatives also include robotic missions to search for life outside our planet and the future deployment of the James Webb telescope.

NASA Chief Technologist Douglas Terrier on NASA’s current and future groundbreaking work.

Terrier was asked how citizens can get involved in NASA’s work. He said that the space agency aims to be the architect and integrator of a global enterprise in space exploration—which will rely increasingly on commercial partners, academia, citizen scientists and international collaboration.

As an example, amateur astronomers with backyard telescopes have helped NASA find near-earth objects like comets and asteroids.

NASAs chief technologist, Douglas Terrier, talks about how people can get involved in NASA’s many projects.

On a more personal note, Terrier spoke about what inspires him about his work. “The fundamental questions that motivate NASA are the ones that have driven humanity’s exploration over millennia,” he said. “We’re at the point now … where we have the technology, the knowledge and the ability to begin to answer those questions.”

Douglas Terrier, chief technologist at NASA, on what inspires him about the agency’s work.

Find out more about NASA’s programs, opportunities to get involved and plans for the future at

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