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NASA selects Mississippi college student for Pathways Internship

Image courtesy of NASA

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has selected Belhaven University computer science major Sam Williams for its highly competitive Pathways Internship.

Williams, a Brandon native and Jackson resident, is a senior who is aspiring to be a software/cybersecurity engineer. He has worked as a penetration tester at a cybersecurity firm based in Clinton.

Since January, Williams has worked with NASA both online and on its Huntsville, Alabama campus. His primary tasks have consisted of enterprise architecture and cybersecurity as a part of the Engineering IT Resources Office at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC).

“We are nearing the launch of the Artemis 1 this summer,” Williams said. “So, it’s an especially exciting time to work in the engineering division!”

NASA Pathways is a co-op program that consists of multiple work rotations and jobs that are taken throughout college. Williams plans to continue with NASA through the end of the summer and attend school full-time in the fall. His last rotation will end in the spring of 2023.

“NASA has been a beacon of technical innovation since its inception, and the opportunity to work with NASA’s computer science division provides incredible industry experience for any aspiring computer scientist,” Dr. John Estes, Belhaven’s Chair of Mathematics and Computer Science said. “Sam’s work in his internship is setting him up for incredible opportunities down the road.”

During the summer, Williams visited the Huntsville Operations Support Center (HOSC), which manages the payload operations aboard the International Space Station.

“I also visited the main additive manufacturing facilities, where the majority of the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) 3D printing is done,” WIlliams stated. “This was especially interesting as I’ve spent a lot of time working with them during this rotation.”

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