Sataparna Mukherjee, a class 12th student from West Bengal, has been selected by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for its prestigious Goddard Internship Programme under the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS).
The 18-year-old hails from Madhyamgram, a small town around 30 km from Kolkata. She is among the five scholars who are chosen from across the world for the programme.
Nasa’s GIP selects five exceptional individuals every year from across the world and funds their entire education after school.
Sataparna will be going to Oxford University where she will pursue her graduation, post-graduation and PhD in aerospace engineering. The young girl will be working as employee and researcher.
“I am very happy to get this opportunity where I will also work as a researcher at the NASA centre in London.”
Sharing her experience, she said it all started in May last year when she was a member of a group on a social networking site where there were many members, including scientists.
“One day I shared some of my thoughts on ‘Black Hole Theory’, and one of the members of this group gave me Nasa’s official website and told me to post my findings, which I did,” Sataparna added.
Her paper on Black Hole Theory and how it could be used to make a Time Machine was hugely appreciated.
Promoting scientific rationale, she said:
“I have chosen English and science as my subjects. The languages of both help expressing and interpreting observations. And that is all what I want. Getting high salaried jobs had never been my on my agenda.”
She added that she want to change help change how people and society think. “I’m confident science and literature will help me do so,” she said.
Sataparna’s father, who is known as one of the leaders of the Kamduni Pratibadi Mancha, said, “She had always been an inspiration for me.”
Her teacher, Pulak Chakraborty, an English professor from Nabagram Hiralapal College, said that she was an intelligent and a good student.
He is also acting as her referee at Oxford.