- Role Model -

Bethany Downer

Profile

Name: Bethany Downer

Occupation: Chief Communications Officer

Employer: Hubble Space Telescope for the European Space Agency

Education: Bachelor of Science, Memorial University; Master of Science, International Space University

Hometown: St. John's, NL

Current community of residency: St. John's, NL

What does your typical work day involve?

Typically, it's about 50% likely that I'm traveling. Now, I work full time from my home office, where I can do all of my work from my computer.

What do you love most about your profession? Why did you choose this career?

I'm never bored and I'm constantly learning new things about space and astronomy! As a public communicator for the space industry, it's my responsibility to stay up to date on new developments, achievements, discoveries in space science and technology in order to find ways of sharing this news with broader and public audiences.

When did you realize you wanted to work in STEM?

I've always had a passion for science. I've tried various different STEM fields before finding my niche as a communicator for STEM!

What were your favorite subjects in school?

Anything involving space somehow! In general, I loved school.

What advice would you give girls, who are still in school, who might be considering a career like yours?

Don't be afraid by the lack of women in a particular field or job. That means you deserve and should be there! By helping break ground and improving diversity in the workforce of various STEM roles, we are paving the way for future women who will be interested in pursuing these domains also.

Why do we need more women in skilled trades and STEM?

STEM and skilled trades are hold an integral role and importance in the applications to our daily life. So, it's only right that women's skills and perspective are incorporated in these roles.

Who was your role model? What about this person inspires you?

I have many. I like to think you can be inspired and motivated by many people. For me, this includes family, friends, colleagues, bosses, and astronauts. I try to learn and take something from each of them because we all have different experiences and lessons that we can share and take from.

What do you do for fun? What are some of your hobbies/activities?

Travel!

What superhero do you relate to most? Why?

Buzz Lightyear! To infinity and beyond. In other words, GO FOR IT. For me, this mentality lead me to becoming an astronaut candidate.

Anything else you wish to share?


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