A is for… Astronaut!
This is Dr. Mae C. Jemison, the first woman of color in space. Described by NASA as “the first African-American astronaut,” she first entered space in 1992 aboard the space shuttle Endeavour as a mission specialist. She originally completed her astronaut training in 1988, after being chosen for the space program in 1987.
She left the agency in 1993 to accept a teaching fellowship at Dartmouth, and later went on to found both the Jemison Group and 100 Year Starship, an organization that seeks to enable the capability for interstellar human space flight by 2112.
You can follow her on Twitter @maejemison.
Being an astronaut requires a lot of hard work and studying, as well as physical stamina and training. Indeed, NASA’s Astronaut Requirements include:
- A bachelor’s degree in engineering, a biological science, physical science, or mathematics;
- At least 1,000 hours pilot-in-command time in jet aircraft; and
- The ability to pass the space physical – which includes the additional requirements of 20/100 or better uncorrected vision, blood pressure 140/90, and a height between 62 and 75 inches (5’1″ to 6’9″).
But, let’s face it… it’s got to be pretty cool to be able to do this at work:
Want to become an astronaut? Read more about the Astronaut Selection Program, and the other International Space Agencies around the world (not to mention SpaceX, which just made history by launching and landing a used rocket on March 30!), along with these brief articles.
- 5 Myths About Becoming an Astronaut (NASA Tumblr, 4 November 2015)
- After Making History In Space, Mae Jemison Works To Prime Future Scientists (NPR, 22 February 2017)
- Astronaut Abby: Adventures of an Aspiring Astronaut
- Happy 80th Birthday to the First Woman in Space (Rejected Princesses)
Related Films & Videos
- DIY Astronaut – Simone Giertz (Warning: F-Bombs!)
- Hidden Figures (2016)
- The Right Stuff (1983)
- Quest: Mankind’s Journey Into Space (2008)
- Secrets of the Universe (2015)
- Xploration Outer Space (2014)
Other Awesome Jobs That Start With A
- Air Traffic Controller
Want to learn about even more cool jobs?
Pre-order the book, World’s Coolest Jobs, a collection of all the coolest jobs you never knew existed. On sale September 1, 2017.