Franklin & Marshall College Franklin & Marshall College

  • Jacob Bleacher '00, NASA Researcher
  • Jacob Bleacher '00, NASA Researcher

Jacob Bleacher '00, NASA Researcher

I majored in geosciences at F&M and earned my doctorate from Arizona State University in 2006. Today I am a research scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., where I study volcanoes and lava flows throughout the solar system.

The extensive fieldwork I did while at F&M, as well as the classroom emphasis on effective writing, gave me a jumpstart on my career in geology. When I got to graduate school, I was way ahead of the curve; I didn't spend as much time learning how to write scientifically.

Beyond my own field research on volcanoes around the world, I spend much of my time with NASA's Desert Research and Technology Studies (D-RATS). We're a team of NASA engineers, scientists and research partners working to design the next generation of rovers, suits and robotic tools to help humans explore the solar system. Once the hardware is built, we test mission operations concepts in the northern Arizona desert.