Sataparna Mukherjee, 18, a grade 12 student from a village near Kolkata, has been selected by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Nasa) for its Goddard Internship Programme under the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS). She is among five scholars chosen from across the world for this programme.
Nasa’s GOP selects 5 exceptional individuals every year and funds their entire education after school. Sataparna who will appear for her school-leaving exams this year, will be at Oxford University where she will pursue graduation, post-graduation and a PhD (as Nasa faculty) in aerospace engineering at its London Astrobiology Centre.
Sataparna said it all started last year when one day she shared her thoughts on ‘Black Hole Theory’ and one of the group gave her Nasa’s official website and told her to post her findings, which she did. Her paper on Black Hole Theory and how this could be used to create a Time Machine, was hugely appreciated.
Under the Goddard Programme she will work as an employee and researcher. Nasa is paying her a generous sum as honorarium, apart from bearing all her expenses.