NASA Scholars Program Dream Come True for Katarina Frank

Katie Frank headshot
April 19, 2022

Katarina Frank has a drive for robotics and STEM, from her time in VEX Robotics during high school, to her degrees from SCTCC and taking on an event coordination role during the VEX Robotics season this year.

While in high school, Katarina’s VEX Robotics coach worked for NASA, and she was able to take two field trips to NASA Johnson Space Center. While on a field trip, she saw students as part of a scholars program and thought she’d like to be a part of that group one day.

That day had come: Katarina was accepted to attend the NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars (NCAS) Virtual Experience April 13-19.

Hundreds of community college students from across the country participate in the virtual experience to learn more about NASA’s missions and careers and science and engineering. During the event, students form a team and design a mission to explore the Moon or Mars, joining a design team, fulfilling a role, managing a budget, and developing communication and outreach strategies.

Katarina took a 5-week online NCAS course in fall 2021, and after successfully completing it, she was chosen to move to Part 2 – Virtual NCAS.

“NCAS has been an interesting experience so far and has allowed me to learn more about the different NASA locations as well as various space exploration missions,” said Katarina. “It has meant a lot to me to be able to have a dream I had in high school come true by being a part of NCAS.”

Katarina’s currently working on her Instrumentation and Process Control AAS after already receiving the Robotics and Automation Technology as well as Mechatronics degrees from SCTCC. She will graduate this May with her third degree in the Energy and Electronics program.

Kate Wallace