OUR TEAM

Executive Board

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Judy Park (she/they)

Chair

Judy is a System Performance Engineer at Cummins and an astrodynamics intern at Morpheus Space. She graduated from Purdue University with bachelor’s degrees in aeronautical and astronautical engineering and mathematics in December 2021. Her research experiences span aircraft fuel thermal management subject to transient load and CubeSat propellant management in a microgravity environment. As a South Korean woman and an international student, Judy is passionate about providing support to underrepresented minorities in Aerospace. As the Chair of International Women of Aeronautics & Astronautics (WoAA), she has spearheaded WoAA's involvement in conferences such as SciTech, ASCEND, Aviation, and YPSE. Outside of Aerospace, Judy accepts art commissions as a freelance artist.

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Rachel Harvey (they/she)

Internal Vice Chair

Rachel Harvey (they/she) is an aerospace engineering Master’s student at Georgia Institute of Technology. Their research is on plasma-wall interaction finite element models for air breathing electric propulsion applications. Rachel graduated with a Bachelor’s in AE from the University of Maryland in 2021, and has interned at Aurora Flight Sciences, the MITRE Corporation, and Blue Origin. Her hobbies include painting, biking the Atlanta Beltline and baking.

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Prachi Panda (she/her)

External Vice Chair

Prachi Panda is an aerospace engineering junior at Georgia Institute of Technology. She has been involved with WoAA since freshman year of college and was previously the outreach chair from 2021 - 2022. Prachi is a student research assistant in the Planetary Exploratory Lab and works with Dr. Christopher Carr. Prachi is also involved with various clubs on campus that range from rocketry to Indian culture to outreach. As the current External Vice Chair, Prachi hopes to work closely with subcommittees and implement her vision for WoAA. Growing up in India which lacks a representation of women in aerospace, one of Prachi’s main goals is to connect as many professionals in the industry with high school female students. She looks forward to executing your ideas and is excited to collaborate with her other board members.

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Leela Hereña (she/her)

Secretary

Leela Hereña is a senior at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) pursuing an aerospace engineering major and material science engineering minor. She has research experience both in academia and industry, conducting a parametric study on polymerization and its frontal velocity for UIUC as well as doing research at Collins Aerospace on lead-free soldering processes. In addition to research, she has completed material failure analysis for Collins Aerospace avionics and is currently working for Hubbell Power Systems as a design engineer. Outside of work, Leela enjoys going to concerts, playing board games, and staying active by playing on club teams around the city.

Board Members

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Shireen Datta (she/her)

Diversity and Inclusion Co-Chair

Shireen is currently working at Boeing/Aurora Flight Sciences as a Systems Engineer on electric and autonomous aircraft programs. Previously, she has collaborated with the FAA and NASA on MBSE-enabled certification streamlining for noise and electric propulsion, and has interned at Jaguar Land Rover and IBM. She has research experience in space debris mitigation and policy, and is collaborating with the European Space Agency on a bioastronautics project. As a multicultural and queer woman of colour, Shireen is passionate about leading and supporting sustainable improvements of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in STEM. Throughout her aerospace career, she hopes to achieve this by normalizing a safe and welcoming industry-wide culture that empowers minorities to reach their full potential.

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Simran Dhoju (she/her)

Diversity and Inclusion Co-chair

Simran is a rising senior at The University of Alabama majoring in Aerospace Engineering and minoring in Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mathematics. She is a 2022 Brooke Owens Fellow and will be interning at Planet as a Systems Engineer in the upcoming summer. She interned at Wisk Aero as a Mechanical Engineering Intern, designing the tilt rotor mechanism, as a 2021 Zed Factor Fellow. She is a project manager and the incoming President of Alabama Rocketry Association, and founder of Women of Aeronautics and Astronautics Nepal. As an international student and minority in aerospace, she is extremely passionate about Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, and building communities where diversity is not judged, but celebrated.

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Michaela Hemming (she/her)

Technical Development Subcommittee Chair

Michaela Hemming is a PhD student in Aerospace Systems Engineering at the University of Alabama in Huntsville. Her doctoral research is on rapid injector development for rotating detonation engines funded by a NASA Space Technology Graduate Research Opportunity (NSTGRO). Michaela received a Bachelor’s of Science in Aerospace Engineering at Iowa State University in 2018 with two minors in Political Science and Nondestructive Evaluation. Michaela also serves as a mentor for the Brooke Owens Fellowship Program and participates in outreach events whenever she can. In her free time, Michaela likes to bake, play DnD, and go hiking with her two dogs.

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Taralicin Deka (she/her)

Professional Development Subcommittee Chair

Shikha Redhal is a Ph.D. candidate in Aerospace Engineering at the University of Maryland, College Park. She received her Bachelor of Engineering degree in Aerospace Engineering from Punjab Engineering College, Chandigarh, India.Her current research focuses on studying the fundamental nature of Rotating Detonation Engine (RDE) propulsion concepts. After her Ph.D, she aims to work in research institutions focusing on space propulsion. Outside of academics, she enjoys hiking, cooking, baking, and painting.

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Amanda Joy Camarata (she/her)

Professional Subcommittee Chair

Amanda is a recent graduate from Colorado School of Mines with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering with a focus in Space and Planetary Science. She has supported heliophysics research through Frontier Development Lab and has participated in asteroid research exploring additional planetary radar analysis methods. She will intern with Lockheed Martin Space during Summer 2022 and return to Mines in Fall 2022 to pursue an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering with a specialization in Thermal/Fluid Systems. She has a previous degree in Sociology and is passionate about increasing the retention of underrepresented students in STEM through advocacy and mentorship. She also serves as the DI&A Chair for the Mines AIAA student chapter and is a member of the Mines Mechanical Engineering DI&A Committee.

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Skylar Edwards (she/her)

Expansion Subcommittee Chair

Skylar Edwards is a rising senior at the University of Colorado Boulder Studying Aerospace Engineering with a concentration in Pre-Medicine and a minor in Biomedical Engineering. Ever since Skylar was little she has been excited about human space exploration and has aspirations to work in the human spaceflight industry in the space medicine/ bioastronautics field. Skylar has held internships at the National Snow and Ice Data Center, Northrup Grumman and NASA JSC. This summer she plans on studying abroad in Europe and working on her research in bioastronautics while also working with BioServe Space Technologies. Skylar was the National Liaison of the CU Boulder Chapter this last year and will be in incoming president of the CU Chapter. As an asian/American women minority in space she aspires to help women and young students pursue their goals in STEM and get students connected to resources they need to succeed.

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Layan Zeitoun (she/her)

Outreach Subcommittee Chair

Layan will be studying aerospace engineering at Carleton University in Canada commencing in the fall of 2022. As a freshman in high school, she was possessed by a passion for aerospace that made her unable to imagine pursuing any other profession. Despite residing in Syria and being opposed to getting involved in this industry by many in her life, she remained tenacious. In fact, she waited an entire year after graduating from high school to be accepted into a university with a space program due to her nationality. One day, she aspires to launch her own aerospace engineering organization, magazine, and CAD software. A main objective of her studies is to amalgamate aerospace engineering with environmental studies and to advocate for the peaceful use of rocketry. If she's not working, she usually watches sitcoms, plays sudoku, solves riddles, or goes for long walks.

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Jocelyn Mata

Member Advancement Subcommittee Chair

TBA

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Avatar Technologies

Website Sponsor

We are grateful to Avatar Technologies for sponsoring our website and helping WOAA further its movement of increasing diversity in the Aerospace Industry. Avatar Technologies is an Aerospace engineering services and consultancy firm based in Maryland. Learn more about our sponsor here!