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Jessica Collisson
Integration and Test Team
NASA's Mars Exploration Rovers Project
NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory


P2K: How did that interest get translated into the credentials that you could get a job with? What did you do in school, high school, what did you do at college? How did you proceed with the interest?

Jessica Collisson: Fortunately for me, I knew JPL was where I wanted to be, in high school and in college. I knew engineering was what I was interested in. Originally, it was aerospace engineering as a whole. I went to the University of California at Davis which did not have an aerospace program, but rather an aeronautical engineering program which I enrolled in and was told that I should probably get a mechanical engineering degree additional to that, given the current aeronautical industry at the time. And I double majored in aeronautical and mechanical engineering, went out and worked in industry for about a year and a half and knew that JPL was having an open job fair...jumped at the opportunity. Fortunately I had some test experience, some testing at my previous job which was what they were looking for here....development testing and integration activities which seems to be my strong suit, with the experience I had in that. Having the goal of being here and then in college the different programs of building airplanes or different crafts and competitions within classes and with different colleges around the states, in fact, brought me into a team working're building things and you're trying to figure out how to design the most efficient product and I think all those tools led me to be a part of this program.

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