OLMSTED FALLS, Ohio — Some kids want to be firefighters. Others, teachers or doctors. Growing up in Olmsted Falls, Joselyn Rabbitt always knew she loved space and science.
"My dad's an electrical engineer so I was always kind of inspired to build things... and my mom was always interested in space," she explained. "We'd go out watch and look at the stars and all that and so that's how I fell in love with space and how I fell in love with engineering."
But she never dreamed where that love would take her. At just 22, Rabbitt is now commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Space Force – the armed forces’ newest branch.
"It was really exciting when it was signed into being an official new branch," Rabbitt said. "And last fall, which which was when I applied, was the first round that they had selects going into the Space Force from the ROTC side."
Earlier this month, Rabbitt graduated from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University with a degree in Aerospace Engineering. Her next stop?
"So what I really hope to be doing is orbital warfare as a space operator," she said with a smile. "So yeah it doesn't involve taking down other satellites- that's pretty hazardous out in space to be doing those kinds of things - but from the Space Force side, it's checking up on enemy satellites and seeing what their capabilities are.
As just one of 250 people chosen this year to join the Space Force, there’s no doubt it’s an elite assignment. And Rabbitt says, she’s now dreaming of a long and exciting career ahead.
"Four years ago I thought I'd probably just be doing my minimum time commitment in the air force," she said. "But after being in the [ROTC] program for four years and falling in love with you know the teamwork and camaraderie you get in the military, maybe now I'm planning on making a career out of it and staying in for 20 years or longer.
Joselyn shared some inspiring advice for other students who might be interested in following a similar career path.
"That's something that I hold near and dear to my heart, is advocating for really young children in general. Everyone, not just girls," she said. "Don't believe any of the stereotypes that you hear. If you have something in your head and you have a goal in mind and you want to go out and accomplish something, you are in charge of your career and there's nothing holding you back. You can go out and accomplish anything that you put your mind to."
*Editor's Note: The video in the player above is from a previous report.