Many kids dream of venturing into space to search for new planets or to conduct cutting-edge research on the International Space Station (ISS). In August 2017, twelve eager men and women came one step closer to realizing their lifelong ambition when they reported to the Johnston Space Center in Houston to begin two years of grueling training. If they succeed, they will be NASA’s biggest graduating class of astronauts since 2000.
The seven men and five women were selected from a record 18,300 applications received by the space agency, since it announced it was seeking more astronauts in December 2015. To be considered for the position, candidates had to have a bachelor’s degree in science, technology, engineering or a mathematics-related field. They were also required to be in good health and between 5’2 and 6’3 tall. Also essential were superior “leadership, teamwork, and communications skills.” According to NASA, the twelve trainees, selected after two rounds of interviews — one lasting three days and the second, an entire week — are a diverse group with various careers and backgrounds.
Computers have been a huge part of our everyday lives. We use them in schools, at home and in the workplace. We use them for business purposes as well as for pleasure. For most of us, we imagine that computers have existed forever, and can’t think of a world without using these machines daily. However, there was a time when computers did not exist, and we recognize the people involved in creating and developing the computers that we now know and love to use.
Since the beginning of computers and the work of Charles Babbage, women have played an important role in the history of computing. Over the years women such as Ada Lovelace, who was a mathematician that assisted Babbage in his work, Grace Hopper, who was one of the first computer programmers and many others have helped in the advancement of computers, computing, programming and other areas. It is important to recognize the achievements of these women and others in the world of computers.
Find out more about the history of women and computers here.
Today, DiscovHER brings you the story of Annie Jump Cannon, an astronomer who revolutionized the classification of stars, and created a system that is still used by astronomers today.
Find out more about her here.