Compton Selected as NASA Community College Aerospace Scholar

August 29, 2016 | | Internal Press Release, Student Success

global scholars

Not too many people can say they spent their summer engaged with NASA, but Jared Compton of Pikeville did just that. As a student in the Global Scholars Honors Program (GSP) at Chattanooga State Community College, Jared ‘s interest was piqued when he received an email from GSP director Amanda Bennett about an opportunity for interested students. “This opportunity called for community college students interested in exploring a STEM career at NASA to apply to become a NASA Community College Aerospace Scholar,” shares Jared. “Aerospace Scholars learn about past, present and future Mars missions during a 5-week online session and if they successfully complete the web-based activities, may be eligible for a 4-day workshop at NASA,” he adds.

Jared actually had no idea what to expect but says he came away with “so much knowledge” from this opportunity. “Seeking out information like what was presented in the course is something I do in my spare time,” chuckles Jared, “so to be put into a course where this information was structured and taught was captivating.”

On schedule to earn his Associate of Applied Science degree in general engineering, with a concentration in electrical engineering in 2017, Jared freely admits that what he learned through NASA was “mind-boggling.” Jared discovered how NASA uses a myriad of spacecraft to study the Earth, listened to past and present plans and efforts to send humans to Mars, and was in awe to learn that “much of NASA research has been so integrated into the world around us that you would be hard-pressed to go a day without using it in some form.” Throughout the 5-week session, Jared connected with others who have similar interests and many professionals.

Jared provided an outstanding academic transcript, essay, and letter of recommendation. The online session ended August 3, and Jared has just been notified that he was selected as one of the top students who will take part in an exciting 4-day onsite workshop at one of 10 space centers around the U.S. His workshop will be held at Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, near the end of October. He will work on a team project directed by NASA engineers; attend briefings by NASA engineers & scientists, tour NASA facilities, and explore career possibilities at NASA.

 “I am so grateful to have had this opportunity though the Global Scholars program,” says Jared.

For more information about Global Scholars, contact Amanda Bennett at 423-697-2577 or email