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How to break into 'New Space' industry?


Spencer Devins Topanga, CA

Hello! I am currently finishing undergrad in engineering.

Previously I worked for two years at JPL and was an Infantryman before this.

My goal is to work on spacecraft design at the mission conceptual level.

Is anyone here experienced in this field and/or industry?


28 January 2021 5 replies Career Exploration



Sharon Parker Roanoke, TX

Hi, Spencer - thank you for your service!

To me "new space" says an innovative, forward-thinking company. You are in the right state to check out SpaceX. Below is a link to its career page. Best of luck!


Jason Aepli Springfield, VA

Hi Spencer,

I work at Northrop Grumman Space Systems. While we’re not generally considered a “New Space” company I can offer some help in breaking into the industry. Why don’t you send me a message on LinkedIn and we can talk more? My answers will depend a lot on your goals.

Jason Aepli


Todd Cloutier Woburn, MA

Hello Spencer,

I too was in the Infantry. I am currently a Cyber Defense Technologist at Raytheon Technologies. I would love to help out by giving you an internal referral. Please message me for more information.

The careers website is:



Jeff Martin Ashburn, VA

I’d suggest that you network at the target company or industry. Use LinkedIn to find people already working there and reach out to them. Ask them the process they used to get hired and ask them to help you navigate the hiring process and if they are willing, ask them to submit you as a referral. These activities require much more time on your part but in my opinion would greatly increase your chances for success. Good luck!


Stephen Dest New York, NY

Hi Spencer,

Thanks for your question. I'm not an expert when it comes to spacecraft/aviation design. I did use the search bar at the top of the right of the page on AdvisorNet and came across a question from a few years ago that was similar:

Some of the advisors who answered that might be willing to connect with you and provide further insight. One of the advisors in that question I linked mentioned that Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin and Boeing all have a presence in Southern California. There are a lot of Advisors on here from all 3 of those companies that you can also send a direct message with your questions:

Northrop -

Lockheed -

Boeing -

Feel free to message advisors from those companies on here. You can look up other companies if you go to the Community Tab up top and click on companies:

You can also use the Community to refine Advisors by specific expertise, such as Defense, Aerospace & Aviation

I hope that helps to get you started! Let me know if you have any further questions.



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