• Brooke Owens Fellow, Class of 2018

  • North Carolina State University, Mechanical Engineering, ‘20

  • Host Institution: The Spaceship Company

  • Mentor: Diana Trujillo

Mercedes “Sadie” McCarthy is a senior studying Mechanical Engineering at North Carolina State University. Although Sadie has always been interested in a STEM career, she found herself falling for the aerospace industry when she realized that nothing else could satisfy her insatiable curiosity quite like space could. She looks forward to using her career to contribute to the exciting discoveries in store for the near future of space exploration.

As a student at NC State, Sadie has devoted her time to learning how to be an effective engineer and leader. She works as a College of Engineering Ambassador where she helps coordinate various College of Engineering events on campus as well as the Ambassador's Mentor&Mentee Program. Outside of her Ambassador job, Sadie currently serves as the Vice President of the NCSU SEDS Chapter and is also an active member of NC State’s High-Powered Rocketry Club where the team competes in the NASA Student Launch Initiative. In the past, Sadie was given the opportunity to mentor 36 first-year engineering students in the Engineering Village on campus, to serve as a Teaching Assistant for an Introduction to Engineering & Problem Solving class, and was also able to participate in a summer study abroad program at The University of Iceland Reykjavik to learn about applications of sustainable energy.

As a Brooke Owens Fellow, Sadie worked at The Spaceship Company in Mojave, CA. She worked on the Large Scale Test Team where she spent her time designing parts and getting her hands dirty in the test lab with as much technical experience as she could get. She helped design various subsystems of large scale test fixtures that will go on to test parts of Virgin Galactic’s future Spaceships, Etta and Artie.

More recently, Sadie spent a month living in Trujillo, Peru where she was volunteering with an NGO to build a wind turbine for a rural community without electricity. She is now alternating her time between taking classes and working as a NASA Pathways intern at Johnson Space Center. At JSC, Sadie works with the Propulsion Systems group within the Flight Operations Directorate to support SpaceX Crew Dragon, Boeing CST-100 Starliner, and NASA Artemis programs.