This day was packed full of company visits with two morning visits at Blue Origin and Fred Hutch Cancer Research Center, and an afternoon visit at the Uber Seattle office. A group of the SELF cohort first started out the day with an amazing experience at Blue Origin. Blue Origin is revolutionizing the future of human space travel. The cohort got to experience the planned uses and manufacturing process of the New Shepard spacecraft and some of the plans for the New Glen spacecraft. Along with this, we got the opportunity to sit up in the mock-up of the New Shepard crew capsule that will be used in the commercialized version of the New Shepard spacecraft. It was an experience that many of the Fellows never have gotten to experience before. This opportunity shed light on the vision of Blue Origin to allow “millions of people to work and live in space” and shed light on the space industry as a whole.
The other group of the cohort went to Fred Hutchinson Research Center, which proved to be an equally unique and amazing experience. Fred Hutchinson Research Center is where bone marrow transplants where first discovered. After succeeding, Bob Day purchased a campus to help encourage researchers to advance in curing cancer. This trip consisted of touring the campus and learning about some innovative things they are working on. We toured a bioengineering lab where we learned about new technologies that are being injected into the body that cut the infected DNA and will rewrite healthy DNA. Overall this experience was very beneficial to the students that toured here.
In the afternoon, the whole group traveled to the Seattle Uber office to gain insight into their operations and missions. At this meeting they walked through many of the current and proposed functionality of the Uber program and Uber app, and how they are working on improving the customer and driver experience. While Uber already seems commonplace in major cities and has a lot of functionality currently, there is still much room for growth. This visit gave a unique perspective on the background of a well-known business.
Overall, today proved to be extremely insightful, and all the Fellows grew from the company experiences. It has been a great experience so far and we cannot wait for the new experiences tomorrow.