A Day In the Life: Vinita Marwaha Madill

Every week we ask a different person to give us a brief overview of their schedule. This week it is Vinita Marwaha Madill, the founder of Rocket Women

Vinita Marwaha Madill is a space operations engineer, contractor at the European Space Agency, Netherlands, and founder of Rocket Women. A high-achieving space & transportation professional, she has international experience in project management, leadership, and business development and is a public speaker and lecturer. Vinita founded Rocket Women, a platform intended to inspire women to study STEM subjects and to consider careers in the space industry.

06.00 – 06.45
 Wake up when my one-year-old toddler awakens around the same time

06.45 – 08.00
 Watch BBC Briefing and the beginning of BBC Breakfast on BBC1 whilst eating breakfast. Usually toast with almond butter and a cup of PG tips tea

08.00 – 09.00
 Walk to the bus stop and ride the bus to work. Check my Rocket Women emails and manage our social media accounts

09.00 – 10.00
 Arrive at work (as a contractor through TERMA B.V.) and walk past the waving European Space Agency flags, representing the multitude of nationalities that work at ESTEC, towards my office. Reply to emails and prioritize my Trello tasks for the day, along with having a cup of tea

10.00 – 11.00
 Meet the European Robotic Arm operations team to collaborate and develop novel crew/astronaut training systems

11.00 – 12.30
 European Robotic Arm team meeting to discuss the project status and updates. Provide updates to the rest of the project team related to the launch campaign in Baikonur, Kazakhstan, (astronaut and cosmonaut instructor) training, operations and joint work with our Russian colleagues at RSC- Energia and Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre

12.30 – 13.30
 Lunch at the main restaurant at ESTEC with colleagues. Occasionally we organize an informal Rocket Women lunch to meet and network with other women working at ESA

13.30 – 15.30
 Develop and test new European Robotic Arm missions using the simulator – the cosmonauts will use these missions onboard the International Space Station to operate the robotic arm

15.30 – 16.00
 More emails and calls along with a coffee

16.00 – 17.00
 Plan an upcoming training session for our Russian colleagues at ESA related to European Robotic Arm operations and crew/cosmonaut training

17.00 – 18.15
 Work on a request from the European Space Agency‘s education and outreach department to contribute to the delivery of an educational activity incorporating the European Robotic Arm and robotic systems. It’s fantastic to see the project encouraging the next generation and conveying how exciting space engineering can be

18.15 – 19.00
 Leave work and ride the bus back

19.00 – 20.00
 Walk home and arrive to be greeted by an excited toddler and my husband. Family time

20.00 – 21.00
 Dinner and put my toddler to bed

21.00 – 22.00
Catch up with Rocket Women emails and my Trello to-do list

 Read for a while (I’m currently reading Invisible Women by the brilliant Caroline Criado Perez) and go to bed