On Wednesday, Punahou welcomed back an alumna with a career that’s literally out of this world: Arlen Kam ’05, an astrodynamics engineer and spacecraft missions operations expert.
Talking to Academy students in the Astronomy and World Civilizations classes, Kam shared about her career journey and interest in space, which was sparked by a space camp experience with seventh grade teacher Mr. Otagaki.
Kam launched her career with a flight dynamics internship at NASA while completing her master’s in aeronautics and astronautics at Stanford University, later rising to research engineer and flight dynamics mission analyst for NASA and other ventures. She’s now a private consultant from her O’ahu home, contributing to multiple projects, including NASA’s CAPSTONE mission to the Moon. “It’s great to be able to work in a field I’m passionate about, even in a place that doesn’t have a big space industry,” Kam noted.
The visit concluded with a Q&A session, where Kam answered questions ranging from her college coursework to the use of AI in her field. She was invited to Punahou by her former teacher, Yunus Peer, who instructs the World Civilizations class.
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