Jananda Hill's Dream Job
Jananda and her team develop methods for testing space telescopes, communications and weather satellites, and a variety of spacecraft. “It's exciting work,” she says, “because these projects are critically important to the scientific community and to the defense of our country.”
Why her work matters
“My team makes a real difference, because if we don’t design our test equipment and software adequately, there could be a hardware failure after a satellite has been launched into space. At that point, it becomes very expensive or even impossible to correct problems.”
Making the headlines
Jananda says, “It’s fun to see systems that I've been working on featured in the news. One example is the James Webb Space Telescope, which will allow astronomers to learn more about the formation of the early universe after the Big Bang.”
Where she works
Jananda works in the space technology sector of Northrup Grumman in Redondo Beach, California.
How she got interested in computer engineering
When Jananda was about 12 years old, her great aunt saw a computer advertised on TV and ordered it for her. “It was fun playing with the various programs, mostly graphics,” says Jananda, “and that's what got me initially interested in programming.”
Best part of being an engineer
Jananda loves “the creativity that’s involved, and the satisfaction that comes when you actually make something work."
B.S. in computer engineering, MIT, Cambridge, Massachusetts; M.S. in computer engineering, Stanford University, Palo Alto, California.
Jananda’s grandfather was one of the most important people in her life. A civil rights pioneer and lawyer, Oliver Hill played a key role in the landmark Brown v. Board of Education decision, which ended legalized segregation in public schools.
Jananda likes traveling and has been to China, Japan, and Iceland, among other places. She loves the outdoors and has hiked the Grand Canyon. She’s also volunteered as a math tutor for girls in middle school and high school in Los Angeles.