Monthly Archives: March 2013

Why I’m a Nuclear Engineer

I’m attending the American Nuclear Society’s Student Conference at MIT on April 4-6. The theme of the conference is the “Public Image of the Nuclear Engineer.” They have a share why “I’m a Nuke” campaign. I though I’d share my answers

What’s the most unique/interesting thing about you that you’d be willing to share?

My research of course!I didn’t start as a nuclear engineer, I started as an aerospace engineer with a dream to revolutionize space travel. I want to bring space to humanity’s backyard. My goal is over the course of my professional career to help facilitate the building of a spaceship that can open the Solar System to rapid reliable travel. While pursuing this goal I have found that nuclear technology is a necessity to achieve a multi-planetary leap for mankind.

Why is nuclear technology important to your generation?

I remember watching the Jetson’s cartoon as a kid. The flying cars, the robots, the computers. I wanted them to exist.¬† I’ve seen a lot of progress: smart phones, electric cars, 3D printers. My generation is a generation of innovation.

Electric power is the fundamental driver of all of this technology and our methods for power generation  could be causing damage to the planet. Nuclear power is a clear solution.

Why is maintaining a positive “public image” uniquely/especially important for nuclear engineers?

In todays world we face a battle of ideas. Groups that successfully convey their ideas to the public in a positive light are rewarded.

I consider nuclear energy a step forward for humanity. A way to generate clean small footprint power in large quantities. It can propell us into space. The public’s impression of nuclear power is that it is “dangerous, waste filled, and will turn you into a zombie.” We have to spread our ideas into the world or we will be eternally fighting an uphill battle.