Director of James Webb Space Telescope Program on reason for his success: ‘Education in the segregated school was excellent’

Director of the James Webb Space Telescope Program, Gregory Robinson, sat down with The Daily Show’s Trevor Noah, Tuesday, to discuss the recent images NASA released from the high-powered telescope. And he also explained how being the son of sharecroppers in segregated and rural Virginia helped set him on a path to success.

Noah asked, “Where does that light come from and how did you get into this role?”

“That education in the segregated school was excellent,” Robinson explained. “We had some of the best teachers in the world. Many of them were far more educated than the teachers in other schools because they couldn't get jobs in the industry like they can today.”

While Robinson modestly gave his colleagues at NASA credit for the program’s success, he gave his teachers credit for nurturing his young intellect.

“We had great teachers who really nurtured us and cared about us,” he said. “So my beginnings were very strong.”

Video Transcript

TREVOR NOAH: Here you are. The man who was brought in to basically get this $10 billion telescope up and running. It was failing before you stepped in. They called you and they're like, we need you to do this. And you did it.

KYLIE MAR: Director of the James Webb Space Telescope program, Gregory Robinson sat down with the Daily Show's Trevor Noah Tuesday to discuss the recent images NASA released from the high powered telescope. And he also explained how being the son of sharecroppers in segregated and rural Virginia helped set him on a path to success.

GREGORY ROBINSON: That education in the segregated schools was excellent. We had some of the best teachers in the world. Many of them were far more educated than the teachers in other schools because they couldn't get jobs in industry like they can today.

KYLIE MAR: While Robinson modestly gave his colleagues at NASA credit for the program's success, he gave his teachers credit for nurturing his young intellect.

GREGORY ROBINSON: So we had great teachers who really nurtured us and cared about us. So my beginnings were very strong.

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