Gayatri Patel
12 Oct 2018



Project Manager in ​the Imaging Systems Division


​​​​​​​​​​Gayatri Patel in her current role as a Project Manager in ​the Imaging Systems Division 


How did you get into your job?

By accident! When I finished university I didn't quite know what I wanted to do. I did Planetary Science at university and had a plan to go down the academic route and do a Ph​​​D, but I realised through my degree that's not quite what I want to do. I then did a Masters more tailored towards industry and the instrumentation side of space. When I saw a job advert for Project Manager and looked at the skills, I thought to myself 'yeah I can do that!'. So I applied for it and five years down the line, here I am.

What is your role?

As a Project Manager I manage projects in the Imaging Systems division at RAL Space. This is work focused mainly on camera electronics type projects. I also work on research and development projects.

What's the best thing about your job?

I think the best thing is that it's a challenge and different every day to the point where it's been five years and I'm not bored yet. I'm still learning so much.

Why is it important you do what you do?

It is important to do what I do to ensure the successful delivery of projects to the satisfaction of the relevant customer by meeting specific success criteria – time, quality, budget. Project Management is underpinned by skills that are used in all walks of life and are easily transferable across job roles and industries such as leadership, team work, effective communication and problem solving. ​

What advice would you give to people looking for a job in your industry?

Do lots of research, make sure it's something you want to do and something that suits your skills. Try and get out there and talk to people currently in the industry and get their advice at what you should do.

Is there anything you wish you could tell your younger self now?

I'd tell my younger self to take every opportunity through school and university- there's so many things to learn about and so many opportunities out there to try and experience new things- just go for it!  Believe in yourself, your own choices and do what you want to do. Because when you do find a job you absolutely love and love coming to work every day - it's such a good feeling. 


1990- The year I got my first set of wheels


1995- The year I started to become interested in space. I used to sit and watch space documentaries with my uncle for hours


2017- The year I joined Wantage Town LFC 


2018- The year GOES-S launched, which is a satellite from the GOES-R series. The 
 group I work for provided the camera electronics on this