Tyler Campbell

Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, VA

Aerospace Engineering

Principal Investigator: Chad Frost

Being asked to write a one page biography is always difficult. When you sit down to write one, you’re faced with a huge challenge....where to start and what to share. There are facts about your life which you find mundane but others think are fascinating. On the other hand, there are moments which you will never forget while others are quick to forget the moment you just shared. As stated, the tough question is where to start and what to share. I suppose I’ll start with where my life started.

I was born in the Roanoke Memorial Hospital located in Roanoke, Virginia. I lived a childhood and teenage life of a typical American kid. I spent most of my free time either playing outside or playing video games. I started working when I was 15 and worked two jobs for the majority of my high school career. With working two jobs, I did not have much time to be involved in clubs. This is where you must be asking, “Why did this kid choose a field of science let alone intern with NASA?”

I knew when I went to college, I wanted to do something challenging. Throughout my life, I sought out challenges to overcome. Whether it was in sports, academia, or work, I felt satisfaction in overcoming problems. With that being said, what better environment full of the most difficult and complex problems than space? I was always intrigued with the moon, the stars, other planets, and the vastness of space. With this focus, I decided to attend Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University also known as Virginia Tech to pursue a degree in Aerospace Engineering.

While at college, I have made sure to live a fulfilling and balanced college career in order to be a well-rounded individual. Academic wise, a design team in which I put together, VT Microgravity, is participating in the Johnson Space Center’s Reduced Gravity Student Flight Opportunities Program where we will be testing the viability of using linear translating mass actuators for cube sat attitude control. Extra-curricular wise, I invest much time into my role as the Class of 2013 President and university governance where I have served on several projects and committees. To share a few, I served on the Presidential Task Force Long Range Planning committee where we developed the 2012 – 2018 strategic plan for Virginia Tech. In addition, I serve on the Residential College Board of Trustees where we planned Virginia Tech’s first residential college. While I enjoy research, I also enjoy big projects, strategic planning, and visionary initiatives.

My plans after college are still a little up in the air. My future will be more concrete pending the opportunities available throughout this summer and into my final year of college. I would love to attend graduate school to further my education. I may further my research on satellite attitude control, but there are other cool aspects about space such as flight trajectories, mission analysis, and rocket design that I am interested in. At the same time, pursuing a career in the space industry right out of college is also a viable option where I would like to pursue project management. My end goal is to pursue politics whether local, state, or federal.

I have been blessed with the opportunity of a life time to intern with NASA Ames. Although I am here because of my academic and extra-curricular work, so many people in this world have made investments into my character development and future success. Due to God, my family, friends, and Virginia Tech, my dreams have become a reality.