NASA is looking for a Planetary Protection Officer


This opportunity is an extraordinary one. NASA is looking for someone protect our whole planet, and everywhere else the human race dares to go. Cool right? Well, although the job might seem as wearing a cape and flying around saving vulnerable people, that’s not quite the assignment in hand. While you will get the awesome job title, you won’t get a cape.

When we go to Mars or wherever interplanetary destination, an international agreement imposes that there should be less than one in ten thousand chance of contaminating the destination. And that’s where the planetary protection officer gets in. He or she is responsible for making sure that’s the case when we send someone or something out there. The same goes when things are coming back. We don’t want to bring a super-alien-virus to earth right? Yes, not all heroes wear capes.

Catharine Conley, the current planetary protection officer.

The cool title was owned previously by Catharine Conley, who told Business Insider the job is now open as NASA decided to reallocate it another department 🤷‍♀️. She also told a little bit about her previous job. According to her, despite traveling to other international space programs (which is quite nice), the job is mainly behind desks and bureaucratic. The nice part? You make good money. NASA pays you 183 thousand dollars per year to protect our planet. Saying like this is doesn’t sound like much, right?

If you still think that’s the perfect job for you, be aware of fulfilling the following requirements: one year experience as an employee of the North American government in the planetary protection area, some sort of experience in the space program, and being graduated in either math, physics or engineering. And let’s not forget about an important part: you have to be a US citizen.

If you are not American, don’t worry. There are plenty of other ways of protecting our planet. Here are a few ways of becoming a planetary protection agent.

  • Use clean energy 🚴‍♀️
  • Prioritize plant based and organic meals 🥑
  • Buy natural and cruelty-free products 🐶
  • Recycle ♻️
  • Just be conscious of what you are doing 💭