November is National Native American Heritage Month, and today LSC is celebrating aerospace engineer Dr. Joseph Connolly!
Joseph Connolly is an aerospace engineer at NASA’s Glenn Research Center who works on cutting-edge propulsion systems. He is Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) and a citizen of the Six Nations of the Grand River.
Growing up in Niagara Falls, Connolly dreamed of working at NASA ever since he saw a space shuttle launch on TV. From there, Connolly studied aerospace engineering at Ohio State University, where he cultivated a sense of community by joining the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES).
Now at NASA, Connolly continues to build a support network and find ways to give back to American Indian communities via NASA’s Advisory Group for Native Americans.
“One of the most important things that helped me find purpose in STEM was framing my work in Haudenosaunee culture, understanding responsibilities to each other, and interconnections to the world around us,” Connolly said in an interview with NASA.gov.
In the same interview, Connolly advised young native Americans seeking a career in STEM to “challenge yourself.”
“It does not matter if it is engineering or some other field, but you need to be pursuing something in your life that makes you excited and perhaps even a little bit nervous that you might not make it.”
To learn more about Dr. Joseph Connolly, visit his NASA page.
Click here to learn more about National Native American Heritage Month.