| Statistics from the June 3rd, 2010 article "You're
no Rocket Scientist" which stated that "this celebrated job
demands a lot of education and know-how and the pay isn't what you think."
Photo c/o Baseline Magazine.|
According to a 2011 Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) position paper, the US is "not producing enough qualified workers to fill important jobs at aerospace companies and the shortfall will increase as retirements grow."
The paper indicates that, "among our largest companies, 57 percent of the workforce is 45 or older, meaning that within 10 years well more than half of their employees will become retirement eligible. Fifteen percent of the aerospace engineering workforce will be eligible for retirement in 2012. Among our largest companies, 29.43 percent of the engineering workforce will be eligible to retire in 2016."
All of which, while it might not seem like good news to the overall industry, is certainly good news to anyone looking to make a career as an astronaut or a rocket scientist, especially if they're willing to relocate. Those looking to work in the space industry might want to check out some of the sites listed below.
- The 15th Annual Aerospace and Defence Top 100 growing Companies of 2012 - What better place to start than with the biggest and fastest growing firms in this area. Produced jointly by top accounting firm PricewaterhousCoopers and online publication of record Flight International, the 15th annual Aerospace Top 100 report outlines the trends in the industry and ranks the top companies by revenues and profitability.
- Astronauts4Hire - A US based, 501(c)(3) non-profit formed in 2010 to recruit and train qualified scientists and engineers for the rigors of spaceflight. The organization conducts a range of activities related to commercial astronaut workforce development and train its members as professional astronaut candidates who can assist researchers, payload developers, and spaceflight providers with mission planning and operations support.
- The Canadian Auto Workers (CAW) - Although not the typical career path imagined by the average future astronaut wannabe, it's worth noting that Canada's largest private sector union also represents aerospace employees at Boeing Canada (Local 2169), Bombardier/ de Havilland (Local 112), Cascade Aerospace (Local 114), CMC Electronics, Magellan Aerospace/ Bristol (Local 3005) and Pratt and Whitney Canada (Local 510).
- The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) Career Page - Interesting background on CSA hiring policies, procedures and opportunities for students, fellowships and funding. The CSA is also home to the Canadian Space Directory, a listing of 100+ organizations directly involved in Canada's space industry.
- The European Space Agency (ESA) Career Page -Vacancies and useful career facts.
- HE Space - Denmark based, specialist supplier of manpower for space programs with offices in the Netherlands, Germany and the US. The firm also manages the Jobs in Space Linked-In group.
- The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW) - Representing a variety of automotive and aerospace workers across Canada and around the world.
- Jobs in Space - The global space industry forum for posting vacancy notices and resumes.
- NASA Jobs - A public listing of available National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) openings.
- The NewSpace Global listing of top 300 NewSpace companies - This list is divided up into three smaller lists covering the 100 most influential privately held newspace companies (the NSG 100), a second list covering 100 additional privately held newspace companies perceived as being "on the bubble" of growth (NSG OTB) plus a third list of top rated publicly traded space companies (the NSG PTC). A surprising number of companies on these three lists are Canadian and a surprising number of the rest have offices and employment opportunities in Canada.
- The Satellite Today Career Center - Focused on US based jobs in the commercial satellite industry. Includes a comprehensive satellite companies web directory.
- The SpaceRef Career Center - A new service hoping to leverage "the 425,000 unique readers who visit SpaceRef, NASA Watch, SpaceRef Business, SpaceRef Canada and the Astrobiology Web each month" and are also looking for employment.
- Space Careers - French based, English language site focused on "the top jobs and the best talents in the industry." Contains a jobs center (where job hunters and recruiters register), a space industry directory, a news and resource section with space news RSS feeds and a LinkedIn page. Maintained by Spacelinks, a specialist staffing consultancy focused on the European space and defense industry.
- The Space Job Center - Czech Republic based employment service focused on the space industry founded in 2010 by "a group of professionals from different industries that transitioned to the space sector."
- The Space Telescope Science Institute (STSI) listing of Employment Opportunities - Located on the Johns Hopkins University Campus in Baltimore, Maryland, the STSI manages both the Hubble Space Telescope and its successor, the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). They offer "the wonder of 21st century space exploration in a job that offers a competitive salary and generous benefits."
- The Wikipedia listing of government agencies engaged in space exploration - Categorized according to capabilities and including links to the listed agency's primary website. One stop shopping for those inclined towards government service.
- The Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) open positions page - The company that built the worlds first "commercial spacecraft" has dozens of job openings covering a wide range of expertise.
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