NASA personally responds to 9-year-old’s application for planetary protection job

Recently, we had reported NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) had posted a job description on its website for its next “Planetary Protection Officer” (PPO) role. The candidates applying for this job require to have advanced degrees and experience working on interplanetary missions.

However, this requirement did not stop a 9-year-old boy from New Jersey from applying for the post of PPO. In a hand-written letter to NASA, Jack Davis, a fourth grader, proclaimed himself as a “Guardian of the Galaxy” and asked the space agency if he could apply.

I may be nine but I think I would be fit for the job. One of the reasons is my sister says I am an alien. Also, I have seen almost all the space movies and alien movies I can see,” Jack said in his letter, which was shared by NASA in a tweet last Friday.

I have also seen the show Marvel Agents of Shield and hope to see the movie Men in Black,” he explained, adding that he’s great at video games and a quick learner. “I am young, so I can learn to think like an alien.”

Responding to Jack’s letter personally, Dr. James L Green, director of NASA’s planetary science division, wrote, “I hear you are a ‘Guardian of the Galaxy’ and interested in being a Planetary Protection Officer. That’s great! Our Planetary Protection Officer position is really cool and is very important work. It’s about protecting earth from tiny microbes when we bring back samples from the Moon, asteroids and Mars.”

He also added, “We are always looking for bright future scientists and engineers to help us, so I hope you will study hard and do well in school. We hope to see you here at NASA one of these days.”

Even, NASA’s Planetary Research Director, Jonathan Rall at NASA Headquarters in Washington, called Jack to congratulate him on his interest in the position.

“Although the Planetary Protection Officer position may not be in real-life what the title conjures up, it does play an important role in promoting the responsible exploration of our solar system by preventing microbial contamination of other planets and our own,” NASA added.

For those uninitiated, the job role requires the PPO to defend the Earth from alien contamination and also ensure that Earth does not contaminate planets, moons, and other objects during their space exploration. It also requires the selected PPO to help prevent possible alien microbes from spreading on Earth. The job also requires “broad engineering expertise,” “advanced knowledge of Planetary Protection,” and a willingness to travel. Candidates should also have a degree in physical science, engineering or mathematics. The position pays $124,000 to $187,000 per year.

All those applicants interested in applying for the job of PPO should be U.S. citizens or U.S. nationals only and have until August 14, 2017 to do so.

Source: CBS New York