I’m David John Gagne II or “Gagne” as I have come to be known here. This program has been one crazily awesome experience. From probing in the lab to roaming in the van I’m going somewhere nonstop. Along the way I met a few interesting people and lived with them for two months. Through good times and not so good times we somehow managed to stick together and work and have fun at the same time. Sure there were some rough spots along the way, but through hard work, determination, and a little bit of sleep deprivation, I managed to succeed mostly unscathed.
Apartment #: 2204
Roommate: G. Zhe Zhang
What did you think about living in your apartment?
My apartment simply had good harmony for almost everything. We were about as different as any random group of boys could be, yet our apartment lacked major drama and strife. It helped a lot that early on we figured out a system of shopping, cooking, and cleaning that held together more or less the whole time (well, the cleaning part had a few problems). Foodwise, we were blessed with people who could throw together top-notch meals during the week and people who could fix up some pizzas, burgers, quesadillas, etc for times when time was lacking and an RA experienced with making the most of a limited budget. Otherwise, we just fooled around and had a fun time exercising, gaming, and of course pranking.
What did you learn from being in an apartment with other people?
1. Don’t leave food
out if you want to have any left later.
Describe what you did and learned at your summer work site.
At Northrop Grumman Space Technology I worked under Erick Marquez and tested and characterized a pseudorandom data generating/receiving printed circuit board he designed. In order to do this I first had to take a crash course in circuit theory and electrical engineering, look up and understand information from datasheets, learn how to record signal patterns with an oscilloscope, and figure out how operate a wide variety of other testing equipment. Most of my work involved checking the timing of the clock and the data in the board and making sure they fell in a tolerance range only picoseconds in size. While I was not working, I enjoyed weekly speaker sessions and tours of Northrop Grumman facilities. My job challenged me to the fullest, gave me lots of good life experience, and even brought me lots of fun times.
What was your favorite experience at NASA SHARP?
Out of all the fun times we had during the program, Disneyland was definitely the most fun. We got there not long after the park opened and headed straight for the newly reopened Space Mountain. That ride blows its counterparts at other Disney parks out of this world! With its bigger cars, action-packed soundtrack, high tech special effects, and pitch blackness save for a few stars, the ride totally enthralled me. I even rode it three times. For the rest of the day I felt the awesomeness of Star Tours, Buzz Lightyear, the Matterhorn, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Pirates of the Caribbean, the Haunted Mansion, Indiana Jones and lots of other fun rides. The food was a little expensive ($5.19 for a slice of pizza!?) but it tasted a lot better than any of the other overpriced food we consumed at concerts and ballparks. Overall, it was a great time.
Words to live by:
“True terror is to
wake up one morning and discover that your high school class is running
the country.” - Kurt Vonnegut