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Transcript: Space4U podcast, Athena Brensberger

Written by: Space Foundation Editorial Team

Hello, I’m Colleen Kiernan with the Space Foundation, and you’re listening to the Space4U podcast. Space4U is designed to tell the stories of the amazing people who make today’s space exploration possible. Today, we are joined by Athena Brensberger. Athena advocates for space exploration through her platform Astro Athens is a website YouTube channel and various social media platforms where people can find do it yourself videos for astrophysics demos, rocket launch coverage, and going behind the scenes at spaceports and events around the world.

 

She’s worked with seeker, futurism, and most recently Arianespace as a correspondent on all things, astronomy and rocket science.

 

Coming from a background in astrophysics, theater and fashion, Athena’s mission is to show that space is within all of us and is for everyone to learn about no matter what industry you are in. Athena conducted research on proto-planetary disks, early formation of planetary systems like our solar system, but after giving her first talk on stage, she fell in love with presenting science rather than conducting it.

 

Thank you so much for joining us today, Athena. Of course. Thanks for having me. As we just talked about here, you have a background in astrophysics, theater and fashion. That’s I think the thing that’s going to stand out to a lot of our listeners here first. How do these three things come together for you?

 

Uh, well started when I was really young, which usually forms kind of our passions. I started with dance at three years old and wanted to actually become a world-famous dancer for the New York city ballet right around 12 years old is when I had been introduced to astronomy, my best friend and Nika Ahmed gave me a book from the Hubble space telescope.

 

Of course, you guys have probably seen the images of things that have come from Hubble. They’re incredible. And that’s what really inspired me to want to pursue astrophysics. However, as I continued in high school and in college when high school, I had a planetarium, so I started learning how to track asteroids in college.

 

I majored in astronomy and started learning. Like I looked through an H alpha filter for the first time serving some spots. And at the same time I was pursuing acting because I just always loved it. It was just always so much fun. There was something that. I got differently from science than theater and vice versa.

 

And it kind of satisfied, I guess, both sides of my brain, for instance. And it was really difficult for me to have to choose one or the other. And so at a really young age, I just sort of said, why do I need to choose? I’m going to try and pursue both and kind of see what happens. So that’s sort of where I’m at today.

 

That’s awesome. And you know, one of the things I think is always important is we talk to a lot of people and they say, you know what inspires a lot of people to get interested in space and science tends to be Sci-Fi stuff. And so it’s, you know, the Star Trek movie, Star Trek. So it just shows the arts are super important for a lot of us.

 

And that’s what gets kids inspired. So I think it’s so great. You’re putting all these things together because in a lot of ways it needs to happen. Yeah, completely. Yeah. Sci-Fi is a huge thing for a lot of science nerds. It’s definitely inspired a lot of the youth. So you mentioned the, the Hubble book that you got was that really one of the first times you were really inspired by space.

 

Yeah, that was the very first time. That was the actual first time on that. I could even remember anything younger than that. I would only look up at the sky to look at the Moon. I grew up in New York City. So, you know, being a Brooklyn girl, I would look up and it would be so much light pollution. I’d be lucky if I saw one star, I mean, most likely that one star was Venus.

 

It wasn’t a star, it was a planet. And so I really wouldn’t see a lot of stars at night. I barely see the Milky Way. I never saw the Milky Way until I was actually 24, I believe, but I never saw like, The Big Dipper. I never said anything like that. It was just kind of the Moon. And I just thought it was sort of a thing that was, you know, in the sky, like the clouds, it wasn’t until that book, when my best friend gave me that book, I thought they were all paintings.

 

I was an artist, I loved oil paintings. So I was like, Oh, these are, these must be art pieces. And she said, no, these are real things. Galaxies, millions of light years away with billions of stars and probably other planets where there might be hosting life. And, you know, at 12 years old, I just thought the first thing was.

 

There’s more to life than what we see in our society. There’s more to life than what’s on our planet. I have to explore that. So that was definitely the pivotal moment in my life that made me go towards that’s super cool. Now, a lot of your shows here revolve around the mysteries of the universe. So kind of like, you’re just talking about, you know, these images of Hubble that who knows what all is out there.

 

So what leads you to ask the questions that you do? I think what leads me to ask these questions is a lot of, I think, funny coincidences that tend to happen on earth. That was the first thing that sort of struck me to be like, why does this happen? Why is there coincidence that every time I think of a certain person, they happen to message me or that I happen to, I don’t know, end up at the right place at the right time.

 

And, and although. As of right now, there is no scientific evidence supporting anything really, other than it just being a coincidence. It’s what really drove me to ask the mysterious questions out there. And that’s why now one of my biggest passion topics is actually quantum mechanics and quantum physics because that dives deep into the unknown.

 

Whereas of course, cosmology is the unknown. Planetary science is the unknown. Astronomy is the unknown, but quantum mechanics is something on a whole new scale that. That’s really a big driving force for me to ask these questions that are the biggest mysteries of the universe, because I think. It all ties down to who are we?

 

And I think there’s the reason why we have so many struggles on the earth and with our society is that a lot of people don’t feel like they belong, or a lot of people feel like they’ve been led down the wrong way or whatever it is, because there’s always a sense of purpose. And for me, I’ve found such a sense of just human purpose through my science, through my research and through now being a communicator, because I’ve found that I do have a place in this universe and there’s just so much more than what I don’t, I don’t get bothered by the definitions of society by the stereotypes.

 

And I think a lot of people, you know, we do because at a young age, we’re, we’re put into boxes all the time. Whereas the universe. Is box lists, you know, expanding it’s ever expanding right now. And so I think that that really is what’s given me a totally different perspective, hence called the cosmic perspective.

 

Those are some really deep questions for people to be asking and to be thinking about this. So what did a great passion to be getting people to think about them? Yeah. Now we’ve know your other passion here is modeling and you’re like, you’re saying there’s. There’s all these boxes and you’re really just taking these boxes and throwing them out because how many people do astrophysics or questioning quantum mechanics and then doing modeling.

 

So I think that’s really awesome. And your modeling is actually taking you around the world. So what brought you to modeling and fashion? It’s really funny because. What started it was when I was doing research at the Hayden planetarium, w well, I went to college and my first astronomy professor offered me to do research with him that summer at the Hayden planetarium under a NASA space grant.

 

And Mike did it, but really needed a part-time jobs. So I was working part time at Aeropostale in times square. And a lady walked in with her daughter and long story short. She was a recruiter for America’s next top model. And I never wanted to go into modeling. I. Thought of modeling is very superficial.

 

I thought it was kind of not doing much for society. I just thought, you know, like why, why would I even do that? I don’t want to do that. I’d rather do theater acting. And when I got scouted, I remember talking to my professor, my mentor at the time, he’s still kind of, I consider my mentor, Dr. Charles Liu.

 

And I brought it up to him and he’s like, why not give it a shot? And he’s like, if you love theater, he’s like modeling can open the doors for you for theater. And he came from a background of musical theater and cosmologies, he really knew the difference of, or he knew how to be able to combine the two worlds.

 

And that’s really what kind of. Gave me the inspiration and the motivation to take that risk and to see what would happen in that world. And I did. Yes, you are. Right. I did fall in love with modeling. I mean, I’ve been doing it for 10 years and I ended up not pursuing the show, the America’s next top model, that season, I got to the final selection and pretty much they gave me a 200-page contract.

 

And I just did not agree with it. I would have been signed to the network for five years. Any work I did. I said, I didn’t want to do it. And I really want to pursue the rest of my research for astrophysics. So I said no to the show and try to simultaneously go to school and then also pursue the modeling career.

 

And I decided at that time to sort of just say, let me take off one semester and sort of see what happens with this career, because doing both, I was missing things back and forth constantly. I would miss castings for doing a presentation or I’d miss Python, coding class for doing a shoot somewhere. So I decided to really try and give it a shot and try it.

 

And that’s what then led me to being overseas. And my first offer was through, I went to a big casting call in New York City for New York fashion week. And I got booked. And at the show I ended up getting scattered for two agencies. They’re the ones who then took me overseas. They offered me a contract in Chile and then Korea and then Hong Kong.

 

And it was awesome. And, um, I had completely put all the science on hold. But felt like there was still some empty void inside of me. And I thought I really have to try and. Go back into science. So I was going to go back to school and become a researcher full time. And that’s when I was like, maybe I really should try advocating for it instead and create this career as a science communicator, which was really first introduced to me by Neil deGrasse Tyson.

 

And I was thinking, okay, I have to go down the standard path of doing television hosting. That’s my only option. But this was during the boom of social media, Instagram and everything. So I kind of just gave it a shot and yeah, and that, that’s what started by, I M. There’s such an importance. And the reason I still pursue modeling, a lot of people say, why are you still a model?

 

If you have this whole career path as a science communicator. And it’s because there’s something very special that happens. That’s really hard to explain to people unless you’re there to see it, but it’s a special happens when I’m. On a shoot and we’ll start talking about space, just randomly. Someone will ask me about other stuff I do or they’ll see my Instagram and like, I’ll end up just mentioning that I like astrophysics and I don’t have to talk the rest of the time.

 

I’m silent. And I will see people go off about how much they love science. And these are photographers, makeup, artists, other models, actors, hairstylists, clothing, stylist, all these people in the industry of fashion. And the thing is. If we’re able to get more people in the fashion industry, interested in science, then we’re able to merge those worlds.

 

We’re able to actually advocate on a global scale a much bigger scale than just sticking to our niche. This is why I still continue modeling also because I do actually like I do like it a lot. I mean, I get to be creative. I get to dress like a crazy person sometimes. And. Kind of put, put all my brain power on hold and sort of let my creativity to shine through and use both sides of the brain.

 

So yeah, that’s kind of my journey and that’s just super incredible because like you said, it’s a lot of people have this interest already faces one of those things that it kind of unites everyone. It doesn’t matter what country you’re from, gender, sexuality, anything like that. We’ve all had a time where we’ve looked up at the Moon or the stars and had that wonders.

 

Yeah, there are those stereotypes. A little bit of, you know, well, you’re either smart or again, talking about those boxes that you referenced earlier that let’s break those boxes down a little bit more and we can all be connected through it. Yeah. Completely. So, what was your first big break actually in the space industry then?

 

Hmm, I would say, I mean, did have quite a few offers sort of in the beginning where I think it was just sort of taking that first, first step and that first risk with starting my YouTube channel and creating that first video. And no one was watching it, no one was on my channel, but I just kept to making content.

 

And I think through that is when. I started getting like some people kind of knowing about me. And it wasn’t until I think just making friends in the science community is what really opened the first door, which was I’m trying to think what my first collaboration was because there was two big ones which were in LA.

 

It was the tomorrow show, which I am obsessed with. And then seeker, which was derived from the discovery channel. It was known as D news in the beginning. And that was my first time ever learning to really be on camera and host and. She, there was one earlier than that. It was in New York city was for futurism.

 

So futurism, which is really awesome media outlet. And they were starting to do video content and. I went to this space policy event. Yeah. It was an event that my friend told me about. This is what I mean, why it’s so important to have friends. And it was with Katie Coleman and Katie Coleman was there one of the astronauts and it was hosted by futurism this whole event.

 

And I just started getting into a conversation with one of the guys that was there and he happened to be one of the heads of futurism and said, Hey, we’re auditioning. Some talents to be on camera with us, would you be interested? And so I said, yeah, and that was my first time ever being on camera. So it was actually with futurism about five years ago in New York city.

 

And it was my first I’m reading off a teleprompter. I was horrible at, it could not read fast at all. I still can’t read fast, but I’ve gotten better. And then it wasn’t until I decided to just move to LA, because I always dreamed of living there. I wanted to go to rocket launches more at Vandenberg, and then that’s what starts a spiral.

 

Cause then I did the tomorrow show. I was just was an interview. Then I became one of their hosts and was doing that every Saturday morning with them. And then I was doing seeker. And that was, and then it kind of just spiraled. And then, um, I was doing that every month up in San Francisco and then I moved back to New York.

 

And so then I started doing stuff with the Science Channel I’ve done. Like What on Earth, NASA Unexplained Files, a new show that they haven’t released yet. So it, yeah, it’s pretty cool. That sounds like so much fun. Yeah, it definitely was. I mean, it’s, it’s still so much fun and I can’t get over the friendships I’ve made.

 

They’re incredible people. Oh, definitely. And like you said, I mean, those connections that’s really, that’s huge for any industry, but especially for the aerospace industry. So it’s so great to have those connections and to be able to utilize them and be mutually beneficial for everybody. Yeah. Completely.

 

Now you told us a little bit, um, earlier you’ve done some research on protoplanetary discs, early formation. So can you tell us a little bit about what that means and what did that research entail? Yes. I usually like to say they’re like a baby solar system pretty much. So it is the early formations of planetary systems.

 

So very, very similar. To our solar system. The only reason I use a different term is because we call our Sun, the Sun, hence solar, but we are living in a planetary system. So pretty much it would be a central star with planets forming around it. And my very first year that I did research was with Dr. Charles Liu under the NASA space grant, another program through CUNY, which was City University of New York.

 

And I was at the Hayden. And, um, I was collecting data from the Hubble space telescope on the Orion Nebula. So the Orion Nebula is located just below the belt of the Orion constellation. So those three stars you can see on the bottom left.

 

When you guys look up at the night sky, you actually can use it without any telescopes or binoculars. Right. I would collect images from there of the gas cloud. So inside of the Nebula are these regions where there’s more, it’s more dense, there’s more dense cloud that will then collapse and can start to form a star.

 

So when it’s just more dense clubs, start to form a star. When a newborn star forms, it spins really fast. And as it’s spinning, it’s allowing for all nearby dust and gas to accumulate into a doughnut shape around. That baby star. This is known as an accretion disk. My research was trying to study the early formations of these.

 

So they were known as proto-planetary disc because it was proto. So before planetary, before the planets would really form and a desk. Now, the thing is there’d be. Dozens of them in the Nebula and this Nebula, a lot of times will be referred to as a stellar nursery. And that’s because it’s the nursery.

 

It’s like newborn babies starts forming. And for me, this was really trying to find out the probability of finding life beyond earth. We can calculate exoplanets. We can calculate how many systems are out there. But for me, I was trying to go 10 steps before that and see, okay. If we’re able to figure out.

 

If any of these can survive to become solar systems, then maybe we can find out if there’ll be life in the planets, circling around the star. What my research really was about was trying to find out if these planetary systems early planetary systems can live long enough for the planets to actually form.

 

Because in the very beginning, I said that donut shape, there’s good. Accretion of dust and gas and planets are just starting to form, but a lot of times. There can be a nearby star that’s really big and massive and super shiny. And the issue with that is it has really strong wind called stellar wind and really strong radiation.

 

And that can actually cause the whole doughnut shape to disintegrate and to fall apart into pieces. And then the planets can never form and there we go. We can never have a solar system. My whole work, which spent, I spent like hours, days, years, months working on was to try and calculate. The distance between maybe a massive star and then one of these planetary systems, because if it’s far enough where the wind is not actually completely allowing it to disintegrate, but close enough where it doesn’t completely freeze up from not having any of that solar radiation, stellar radiation, solar is the Sun number.

 

I mentioned that stellar radiation. Then it actually could live. It was really trying to figure out whether or not it could live. It was awesome. It was the first time I gave a presentation. Ever. And that’s what really made me fall in love with presenting science rather than conducting it. Because once I got up on that stage, it was like being on a bicycle again, you know, that metaphor of, you know, once you get on a bike, you’ll never forget how to ride a bike.

 

And the first time I was ever on stage, I was barely three years old performing and I was a ballerina. And for me, it was being on that stage doing astrophysics. It was answer’s Seidel, but for teaching the world about science. So instead of, you know, entertaining them through. The arts, um, entertaining them through working their brain muscles and allowing them to learn something new.

 

And that to me just felt, gave me so much more purpose and meaning. And that’s when I was like, I think I got to do this full-time instead, you know, actually be a presenter and talk to people. So, yeah, that’s super fascinating. And, um, that’s the nice thing is when we can take these super-complex concepts and then break them down where they can make sense to everybody, which obviously it sounds like is huge for you of making it the basis for everybody that anyone can get involved with it.

 

And a lot of the concepts can be so complicated and super confusing. You did an excellent job of explaining what all of that means. Cause even when I first read that it was like, I have no idea what this means. So, so thank you. That definitely helps a lot. And so that was some of your work with Arianespace and as well as being a communicator, is that correct?

 

So as far as my work with young group, that was a little bit different. That actually was where I was going. I became part of their show, the final countdown. That research was separate research. That was for NASA completely early in my career before I pursued modeling. So I did that when I was super young and it was just in college and then went into the modeling industry.

 

And then recently this past November, I was reached out to like Ariane group. So our own group is part of when you said Arianespace, they are the ones who launch satellites up into space. They launch out of South America, French Guiana, and they pitched a new show idea to me last November called the final countdown.

 

I don’t know, like we would love for you to be one of our hosts on there and we’re going to be shooting it out of our studio in Paris, but it would be coinciding with. The Arianespace live stream. So we would actually be working together. And in this way, we can not only tell the world about this launch that’s happening, but we would bring on artists and creatives and people that are.

 

Musicians at the same time as people that are CEOs of creating a biospheres on Mars, we would have such a beautiful, large and diverse array of people for the show. And so that’s been like a whole whirlwind for me because I was my first time. Going to the Amazon and interviewing all these people from ISA.

 

So European space agency to Knesset, to Ariane group. And the whole thing was just, just been, it’s been incredible. And that just came in through, through an email. It’s I mean, that’s, that really goes to show kind of the strength of having a social media presence and just doing things to try and help.

 

Enhance knowledge by really doing things to sort of serve more of the community and bring more people up in, in science or in a certain mission. And yeah, and things will just start to gravitate. But your page — your description has you as Astrophysicist Barbie. And I have to say that personally, I love this because. I get teased a lot because pink is my favorite color.

 

And so I used to have a similar title when I was younger at a different job that I had. Um, so can you tell us a little bit about this description, why you choose that? I just changed that maybe four days ago, which is really funny. I always just had the standard science communicator or space evangelist on there.

 

I had first started space evangelist because I heard the term evangelists and I think it was a church service or something. And I’m like, what is that? Google? And it’s felt speaking the word of a specific religion. And I was like, I speak the word of space, some kind of like a space of Angeles. And so I had first put that out there and like, no one was doing it.

 

And now I notice everyone’s right. And then four days ago, my, my dad and my sister gave me a Barbie doll that is astrophysicist Barbie. And she looks exactly like me. I even have the same top as her and I was, Oh my gosh, this is me because the thing is. My Instagram page, I always wrote just space science news.

 

And that I wrote full-time space evangelists, part-time fashion model at Wilamena, which is my agency. It always confused a lot of people to move be like, why are there modeling pictures here? Like we want to learn about space. My modeling agency would just be like, Hey, we want to see some modeling pictures if you can post, because you have Maybelline looking at your page.

 

And so I’m like, okay, cool. So I’m like trying to satisfy both and I’m like, I don’t want to be misleading. Wait a second. My page really is a combination of the femininity of Barbie. And then the kind of the intellect of astrophysics. And I was like, maybe I really could merge us together because I do enjoy dressing up to make a video.

 

I love red lipstick. I love wearing glitter. I love pink. And I’m like, I shouldn’t have to change it. And I spent years. Downgrading down dressing, doing everything I can to see more, to be taken more seriously. And I mean, I did things from changing the sound of my voice to changing my hair color. I mean everything.

 

And I just thought I’m like, wait a second. You know, and I’m going to quote Legally Blonde right now, but why should I be discriminated against because I’m blonde. And because I dress in pink, frilly colors in the science industry, meanwhile, all these other things going on in the world, I’ve got the stuck up there.

 

You know, I just kind of thought I’m gonna just, I’m just gonna just do it. I’m just going to do me. And that’s actually what really. Inspired the, the wardrobe for cafe Astro Athens was dressing up sophisticated girl who wears pearl earrings and a sparkly dress and red lipstick. And I think it’s. I think it’s hilarious.

 

I mean, I just have fun with it and I think it’s important because astrophysicist Barbie embodies that you can really pursue and merge how many things you want in life. And that’s what we’re living in right now. We’re living in fluidity. And I think that it. It’s about time. We stopped categorizing. And like we said earlier, putting everything in boxes and start living more fluidly because all the rules have just been made by people no smarter than us.

 

And it’s just like all the rules of our society. We don’t need to completely follow that just to make other people more comfortable. Who cares? I don’t know. I’m a New Yorker, so that’s just kind of my field. I’m like, if I find someone like, sorry, like I’m not doing it intentionally to hurt you. I’m just living my true self.

 

And if that bothers you, then go away. Sorry to totally be like blunt like that. I’m usually so nice, but I think it’s important to wear that armor. And I think that I finally started coming into that later in my twenties. I see a lot of people need that and I think it’s really important last, and we’re, like I said, it just, I personally had a little bit of a relation to it, so I just thought it was really cool.

 

And the Barbie you’re talking about, I believe actually came out. In like October or November of last year. And I actually have one at my desk at work and then another girl at work, she saw it and she was like, Oh, I want one too. So, um, we actually have little versions of you at our desks. I love that. Oh, that makes me so happy.

 

That’s awesome. So tell us, what is your favorite thing about space? I would definitely say that it’s the unknown. Just because I personally love the unknown and I think it might have something to do with growing up in New York City. I, you know, I grew up in the chaos and I find comfort in the chaos. I’m not typically a person who finds comfort in the routine.

 

And because of that, I almost astronomy and astrophysics allows for my mind to just turn into this rainbow of a kaleidoscope feel like. My mind becomes a kaleidoscope. When I think about astrophysics and cosmology, I prefer that over plaid. I prefer kaleidoscope. I prefer Paisley. And I think that that’s kinda just how I am personally.

 

I know it does fear. A lot of people, I have met people who say I would never leave planet earth. I can never, I can’t think about how big we are. I w I much rather would stick to knowing that earth is that, and that’s it. And to each their own, each person is, is completely different, but I truly enjoy exploring not knowing anything.

 

And the more that I am learning stuff. It really is humbling. It shows me that there’s, there’s so many more things. I don’t know. I like to kind of test my brain capacity and see, okay, how much more can I learn? How much more information can I download? Because our brains are not a hard drive that has a maximum of two terabytes.

 

You know, our brains can hold so much power and it’s just a matter of testing that to sort of see where, how far we can go. And, and I think that’s something really special that that humans have. I’m like any other species we can merge the creativity with the intellect and it’s about. I don’t know, kind of seeing where that could take us.

 

Awesome. What would be your advice for those who want to try to follow in your footsteps? Yes. I love this question. The first thing I love saying is find a mentor, someone preferably who can be there physically in person with you that you can actually talk to because having a mentor really changed my life.

 

Dr. Charles Liu, he is the one who really helped me think clearly on whether or not I should pursue modeling whether or not I should pursue astrophysics. I mean, he found me when I was a political science major, because I didn’t think I was smart enough for physics. And I entered the school as a physics major, quit what, into political science and then took us astronomy 101 class.

 

And he’s like, what are you doing? And he’s like, you love this stuff. And. And, you know, and the thing is sometimes we need someone to, to say that to us, someone who isn’t our family or our best friend, because obviously, you know, they, they know us well and it takes, it’s really important to have, uh, an outside clear lens of a person kind of looking at you.

 

So I definitely say, find a mentor, try to build a vision for yourself, what it is that you actually want to achieve in the next couple of years, or even the next year. And then look at the skill sets that you need to get there. For me when I was setting my new year’s resolutions, I was doing all the wrong things.

 

At first. I was, I’m going to make 115 YouTube videos this year and that’s that. But instead I realized what really motivated me to make the videos was say, okay, I’m going to subscribe to every science newsletter possible and read 15 articles a week, because if you’re reading more of that language and you’re surrounding yourself more with the industry, you want to be in you’re in turn, going to want to talk about it and share it with the world.

 

And that is what inspired me to make all the videos. So rather than setting a goal of a number, I instead decided to set a goal of a skill set and the skill set was to read more often, surround myself with the literature. Another example would be like, if you actually. Want to do journalism or you want to do more on-camera work.

 

Yeah. Volunteer at museums volunteer programs, because you want to see what you’re like actually talking to people. And since it’s not a job, you don’t have the pressure of being perfect. You’re volunteering. And so they’re just grateful for you being there. My first volunteering, well, technically my first volunteering was the Brooklyn public library, but that’s, I was like 13 years old, but my first space volunteering was at The Intrepid in New York City, which is where the space shuttle enterprises.

 

So that was the orbiter, the first space shuttle. It didn’t go to space. It was used for testing and I practiced being a volunteer presenter, and I would stand there at the nose of the shuttle and would talk to whoever walked by pretty much.

 

Yeah. And that’s what taught me my presentation skills. That’s what helped me learn to memorize things. That’s what taught me that I have to speak to 12-year-old kids differently than I talk to 90-year-olds, you know, grandparents. Yeah. Doing that really was my trial and error. And I stress it a lot that I like to experience life as a trial and error.

 

I test things out all the time. I beta test. You always have to just try things out and don’t hold back thinking you’re not perfect. You don’t have everything set up. You don’t have all the qualifications, just do it. Cause it’s just all those qualifications and rules. Anyway, we’re kind of just their guidelines to follow.

 

But not always, are they going to be enforced? Of course, if you’re going to be a doctor, you’re going to be a, you know, a physician you’re going to do scientific research. Yeah. Those qualifications are mandatory, but if you’re doing things that are a little bit more flexible, a little more artsy or more abstract, you can definitely, you know, not have to follow in a specific routine.

 

And so when it comes to science communications, I think that. Just giving a shot and talking with people is what what’s really gonna make you feel like, okay, I’m actually doing it. So now do I want to keep doing it or do I want to pursue something else? As far as the steps go, it would be mentor skillset, surround yourself with the literature and then just trial and error.

 

Everything. That is great advice. Thanks. Well, thank you so much, Athena. It’s been so awesome to have you on our show today. Of course, thanks for having me. This has been, this has been awesome and like really passionate, which is what we love. So that does conclude this episode of the Space Foundation’s Space4U podcast.

 

Keep your eyes and ears open for more Space4U episodes by checking out our social media outlets on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. And of course our website at www.space foundation.org. Athena also did another interview with our chief curiosity correspondent, Ron Sparkman, go make sure you check out our Facebook page to see that, uh, that aired back in beginning of April and on all of these outlets and more, it is our goal to inspire, educate, connect, and advocate for the space community because at the Space Foundation, we will always have space for you. Thank you for listening.


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Space4U Podcast: Athena Brensberger – Founder and CEO of Astroathens, LLC