Belonging to a small town named Jalagon in Maharashtra, Anima Patil Sabale, Orion Spacecraft Simulations Lab Manager at NASA’s Johnson Space Center (Jacobs) may have achieved her dream of becoming a Scientist-Astronaut, but it was not an easy journey at all. “You should chase your dreams but always have a backup plan,” she says while sharing her strenuous journey at UPES’s web talk series ‘Shakti Talks’, encouraging young girl students to craft their future in the field of STEM.
Anima’s dream to become an astronaut began as a child when she developed a fascination for the stars and the galaxy. Successful in chasing her dreams to work for the world’s most renowned space research center, she says, “Dreaming of something like NASA or Aerospace Engineering was not considered normal for girls in the 80’s. Even when I applied for Air Force, in those days the very first criteria was to be a male. It’s not the same today, and things have changed a little for girls now. But still there has to be a lot of passion instilled to break the glass ceilings that still exist to achieve your dreams.” she says.
Sharing her experiences with the girl students who aspire to make their career in the field of space and aeronautics, Anima Sabale gave some tips that every aspirant should swear by:
Look for opportunities for yourself but don’t follow others: While it helps to have a clear idea what you want to become in life, following your passion and working towards looking for opportunities that really cater to your dream job are two different things. It is also good to take inspiration from other people/ achievers’ life journey but trying to replicate that in creating opportunities for yourself is not really feasible. With times whole scenario changes and there is nothing static, so always focus on looking for opportunities in the present world.
Have a backup plan: Sometimes we set such goals for ourselves that are difficult to achieve and might take some more time than expected. Therefore, one should always have a backup plan that is not necessarily disassociated from your present dreams but rather plays a vital role in taking each step towards achieving your goals.
Work Hard: They say there is no substitute for hard work. And it is absolutely true. The shortcuts might help you achieve what you want without making much efforts; but in the longer run you will face problems due to lack of expertise that you could have only earned from your hard work.
Let your achievements speak for themselves: Start by doing what is necessary to achieve your dreams but always remember that your action speaks better than the words. Your achievements will always be touted and recognized no matter whatever field you work in. Always keep a track of your failures and learn from them to do better every day and let your achievement speak for themselves.
Shakti is an initiative by UPES to empower women by implementing multiple initiatives in areas of training and development. Through Shakti, UPES endeavors to encourage more female students for ‘classrooms to boardrooms’ journey and prepare women leaders across various sectors.