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UVI Homepage Feature: Carpe Diem: Student’s Life Long Dream Granted at NASA UVI - UVI Student’s Research Published…

Lauren Arnold has always had a keen interest in astronomy from a tender age and despite being otherwise converted, she has always returned to her main interest. Last summer, Arnold a senior undergraduate student of the University of the Virgin Islands, spent 10 weeks from July to August at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) in Washington, D.C.

“When I was in third or fourth grade, I applied to Space Camp and I was accepted on a partial scholarship,” she recalled. “However, my single-parent mother could not afford the additional money and so I could not attend. So that caused me to give up on wanting to be an astronaut”, she said. “I started getting into marine science and that was when my love of the ocean and sharks began”, she continued. “Since then I have wanted to become a marine biologist, which is why I attend UVI as a marine biology major so that I can do shark research”, she said.

Still interested in pursuing her lifelong dream, Arnold said, “two summers ago my mom and I went to Kennedy Space Center in Florida and I met two astronauts.” “They said that although I am a marine biologist, I can still be an astronaut. I got bit by the space "bug" again, and wanted to get my foot in the door at NASA, anyway that I could”, she stated. Arnold said that she applied for the NASA OSSI internship and was accepted to work on exoplanets at Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) in Maryland.

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