UAH

IPT Roles and Responsibilities: Leadership Positions

We’re starting to gear up for the Fall 2011 semester of IPT, and we’re hoping that all of the people in the class are doing the same. We’re about to put up a questionnaire where we ask you what kind of jobs you think you’d be interested in doing in class, but it’s not really fair to ask you that question before we’ve given you some information about it.  This is the first of three posts that will talk about what we expect from IPT team members.

Leadership Roles

Project Manager

The project manager is the big kahuna – the person in charge of the entire IPT team.  Project managers work with the scientists to develop a winning mission, concentrating on the big picture of what goes where and when.  They need to have strong organizational skills and be a good technical writer, since they do most of the work on integrating reports and writing presentations.  We’ve noticed that teams take on the personality of their PM; we want project managers to be excited about IPT and (most importantly) ready to win.

  • Responsible for organizing deliverables and ensuring that assignments are complete.
  • Responsible for maintaining morale.
  • Primary interface with scientists, including the Principle Investigator.
  • Needs to have strong organizational skills.
  • Needs to be a skilled presenter and public speaker.
  • Needs to be comfortable in authority.

Chief Engineer

The Chief Engineer is the geek’s geek on an IPT team; they have to know something about everything on a space mission.  They need to be massively dedicated to the team and the project, ready to help when people are falling behind and ready to push the entire team in those last crucial days before a deliverable.  The CE is the absolute authority on everything about their team’s design – they’re the person who can tell you everything you’ve ever wanted to know about how to get to Mercury or the Moon.

  • Responsible for the UAH technical design team.
  • Responsible for margins, reserves, and the Master Equipment List.
  • Needs to be technically skilled.
  • Needs to have strong organizational skills.
  • Needs to be a skilled presenter and public speaker.
  • Needs to be comfortable in authority.

Lead Systems Engineer

Have you ever wanted to run a multi-national corporation?  If so, this is the place to start; the LSE is responsible for keeping track of all the partners attached to an IPT team.  High school students in the InSPIRESS program are competing to design payloads for your spacecraft, other engineering teams in other states ( Cal State L.A. for example) and in other countries (ESTACA in Paris) are designing some parts of the mission, and it’s your job to keep everyone on track and moving together as a team.  At the same time, you have to keep an eye on the UAH design and the mission as a whole – it’s your job to make sure that the requirements of the mission are met and that the mission stays on budget.  Welcome to the real world!

  • Responsible for organizing and maintaining contact with partner teams.
  • Responsible for verification of requirements.
  • Responsible for cost and risk evaluations.
  • Needs to have strong organizational skills.
  • Needs to be a skilled presenter and public speaker.
  • Needs to be comfortable in authority, especially with remote teams.