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Activities > Mentor Moments: Introducing Travis Hicks, Electronics Engineer
Mentor Moments: Introducing Travis Hicks, Electronics Engineer
Long Beach, California -- Oct 29, 2012 --






The Village P.r.o.j.e.c.t.s





Mentor Moments: Introducing Travis Hicks, Electronics Engineer






Travis Hicks is one of many African-Americans who were actively involved in the Space program. In a recent interview he spoke enthusiastically about his 40 year career in the space electronics industry.


How did you get involved with space electronics?

I was always curious about electronics, and I studied it in college. I later went to work for Hughes Aircraft as an electronics engineer.   At the time, the space program was ran by NASA. through Rockwell International. Rockwell International had subcontracted the electronics portion to Hughes Aircraft Company. I was working at Hughes Aircraft as an electronics engineer.  


Were you involved with the Space Shuttle Endeavor? 

I had the opportunity to  work  as one of the project engineers on all the space shuttles, including Endeavor. 


What was your role as an electronics engineer on these projects?

I had an electronic box that controlled the maneuvering of the space craft as it hooked to the international space station,  The box would also track satellites and bring them in, and allow communications between the space shuttle and the ground.


How long did you work in the space shuttle program?

I worked on the program approximately 10-12 years.


In addition to working on the space shuttle, I also worked on most of the communication satellites including those that allow us to have today’s phone and television communication systems.  The last satellite that I worked on was with Direct TV. 


The Village P.r.o.j.e.c.t.s. (http://www.villageprojects.net) is introducing young people to career role models in areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM).  Dr.Willingham-Toure, founder,  stated: “I overheard Mr. Hicks talking about his role in the space industry at Bethel C.M.E.Church, Long Beach where he and his wife are active members.  I made a mental note to interview him later because I knew that his story may be very motivating to today’s young people.”