How to Become an Astronaut

How to become an astronaut

Over the past four years I have shared my dream of becoming a NASA astronaut with kids and adults around the world. While there are only a handful of people who have made it to becoming a professional astronaut in the past 50 years, it is a dream that inspires kids throughout generations to reach for the stars.

What’s great about this dream is that if you reach for it and work hard, even if you don’t end up as one of the professional astronauts, chances are you will land in a pretty cool space 🙂 ! I have met countless engineers, scientists and other people who work in the space program whether through NASA, ESA, Roscosmos or for a number of private companies including Lockheed Martin, OrbitalATK and many others. These people love their jobs, and while being an astronaut may have been what started their passion for working in space, they are incredibly happy where their life paths have taken them.

So what is the secret of anyone who sets out to work in the space industry as an astronaut or any position that supports space exploration? There are some things that are requirements by NASA and other space agencies which you can find below and then there are things that I have learned that will help you along your path to application which I will talk about first.

The first step is to have a passion for space and not be afraid to talk about your dreams. The second step is to act big, to create a plan to make your dreams a reality and then work your plan every single day. While you work that plan, be prepared for it to change and adjust it as your life changes.

Talking About Your Dream to Become an Astronaut

When I say talking about your dream, I am not referring to talking online like I do (although that is one place you can talk about the dream) I am actually referring to talking to the people in your day to day life. Your parents, your teachers, your soccer coach, your friends, your grandparents, hair stylist, bank teller…ok you get the picture. Talk about it with everyone you can – don’t be obnoxious and dominate the conversation or make everything about your dream, but make sure people know it’s your dream and make sure they know you have a plan. This is how people know to help you, because you tell them what you are doing, what you hope to do and what you need to get there. If you don’t tell people how can they help you?

As far as talking about it online, it certainly can be nice to get support from others online as well. But be clear about why you are online talking about your dreams. If you are just looking for a community that supports you that is a good approach. If you think amassing a huge following will somehow help you become an astronaut, that is not going to help you. NASA does not select astronauts based on how popular they are online or offline – they select them based who is the best and who fits their needs at the time.  Another great reason to be online is to help spread the important work of the space program. While I share my journey to becoming an astronaut online, I am actually also working to create interest in NASA and human space exploration. Why? Because for Mars to happen we need to get more funding for NASA and to get more funding we need the general public to become interested and understand why we need to do this. My commitment with my outreach work is to get someone to Mars in the 2030’s even if it’s not me that is selected by NASA. 

Creating a Flexible Plan and Following It Everyday

Do you know the difference between a dream and a goal? A dream is near impossible to reach and a goal is something that you can probably reach if you create a plan and work day in and day out to make it happen. I recently read an article where my mentor Astronaut Luca Parmitano, said this. It stuck with me. It’s so true! Wanting to become an astronaut is a dream, but my career choice to become a scientist is a goal. Becoming a scientist is part of reaching the dream of becoming an astronaut and it’s important because it’s also what my career focus will be for 50+ years. I better love science don’t you think?

So passion is important. And goal setting is equally important. So how do you set goals for 10-20 years in the future? You write down the big goals and dreams and then you work backward to where you are today. I want to become an astronaut which means I need to qualify with some basics listed below. Before I make it to astronaut I need to make it to scientist and not only a scientist, I need to be one of the best. This means school. I started my process of planning back in 7th grade and it became clear I needed to take the most advanced math and science courses all the way through college. I set my goals first the milestones, high school, college, grad school and career and astronaut application. And then filled in the stuff closest with more specific goals. High school was in front of me so it was focusing on the right courses, getting into the University of Minnesota exclusive post secondary program and on and on. Next college my goals are solidifying and from there I will move outward. As time passes I can add things in to fill in gaps. I hang this plan on my bulletin board in my room and I look at it everyday. I change it and adjust it as needed and I make sure I am following it. Every day. Every choice I make takes me either one step closer or one step away from my goals and dreams. Keeping my dream and plan in front of me ensures I stay focused and make the right choices.

Don’t forget physical fitness, good health and other basics that will be necessary to become an astronaut. Include all of that into your plan.

NASA Requirements for How to Become an Astronaut

As for how to become an astronaut, we are fortunate as NASA has made the requirements to apply to the NASA astronaut corps available online. If you are from another country, please check with your country’s space agency. You can follow a similar guide as NASA’s, but be aware that every agency may be different. Here are a few agencies from countries other than the US:

United States Citizenship Astronaut Requirement

The first requirement for NASA astronauts is to be a United States citizen. However, if you were not born a natural citizen of the US, don’t give up hope! In 1981, Franklin Chang-Diaz became NASA’s first naturalized citizen astronaut. Chang-Diaz was born in Costa Rica and still holds dual citizenship. He conducted a very successful 25-year career with NASA, completing seven space shuttle missions. He was then followed by nine incredibly successful naturalized citizen astronauts: Gregory E. Chamitoff, Kalpana Chawla, C. Michael Foale, Gregory H. Johnson, Michael E. Lopez-Alegria, Carlos I. Noriega, Nicholas J.M. Patrick, Piers J. Sellers and Andrew S.W. Thomas. Astronauts are chosen because they are the best in their field of study, and this is no different for naturalized citizens looking to become astronauts. In fact, seven out of the 47 currently active NASA astronauts are naturalized citizens.

the-International-Space-Station-how to become an astronaut

Photo Credit: NASA

The path to become a NASA astronaut splits into two categories, Pilot or Mission Specialist. Pilot astronauts can serve as commanders or pilots of missions, and are responsible for the vehicle, crew, and mission safety/success, as well as the deployment of satellites and extravehicular activities. Mission Specialist astronauts are responsible for the use of consumables, crew activity planning and experiment/payload operations. Both are crucial positions that help to create a balanced crew.

The requirements listed below come from the NASA website. I want to underscore that these are minimal requirements. Look at any astronaut biography and you will see that their education and accomplishments are typically much greater than what NASA states as a minimum. Consider this: the 2013 astronaut class for NASA consisted of 8 astronauts who were selected from 6,100 applicants. That means applicants for this class in the NASA astronaut corps had a .013% chance of being selected.

Pilot Astronaut Minimal Requirements

Pilot astronauts need a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in engineering, biological/physical sciences or mathematics. They also require a minimum of 1,000 hours pilot-in-command time in a jet aircraft.

Pilot astronauts need to be able to pass a NASA space physical, which includes the following items:

  • Distant visual acuity: 20/100 or better uncorrected, correctable to 20/20 each eye
  • Blood pressure: 140/90 measured in a sitting position
  • Height between 62 and 75 inches

For applicants applying to be Pilot astronauts, NASA strongly recommends flight test experience. While it is theoretically possible to obtain these credentials without going into the military, the majority of NASA Pilot astronauts come from either the Air Force or Navy.

Mission Control Astronaut Minimal Requirements

Mission Control astronauts are required to have the same education as Pilot astronauts: a bachelor’s degree in engineering, biological/physical sciences or mathematics. However, Mission Control astronauts must also have at least three years of “related, progressively responsible, professional experience” in their chosen field of study. Advanced education is highly recommended for both Pilot and Mission Control astronauts, and can even replace some of the three year work requirement. A master’s degree is equal to one year of experience, and a doctoral degree is equal to three years of experience.

Mission Control applicants must also be able to pass a NASA space physical including the following items:

  • Distance visual acuity: 20/200 or better uncorrected, correctable to 20/20, each eye
  • Blood pressure: 140/90 measured in a sitting position
  • Height between 58.5 and 76 inches

Payload Specialist Astronaut Minimal Requirements

A third and far less common path is that of a Payload Specialist astronaut. Payload Specialists are non-NASA personnel who are brought in to perform specialized onboard duties. They can be brought in from private companies, research universities and even other countries. Although they do not undergo the NASA astronaut selection process, they are required to have an appropriate education/training for their payload or experiment. Of course, they must also be physically fit for space travel. Payload specialists were far more common on the Space Shuttle missions than they are now on the Soyuz missions, due to the larger crew capacity of the Space Shuttle. Soyuz only holds a crew of three, leaving far less room for extra personnel such as Payload Specialists.

Physical Condition

Also important for applicants to know is there are expectations for physical condition. Here is what the European Space Agency lays out for these requirements:

  • The applicant must be free from any disease.
  • The applicant must be free from any dependency on drugs, alcohol or tobacco.
  • The applicant must have the normal range of motion and functionality in all joints.
  • The applicant must have visual acuity in both eyes of 100% (20/20) either uncorrected or corrected with lenses or contact lenses.
  • The applicant must be free from any psychiatric disorders.
  • The applicant must demonstrate cognitive, mental and personality capabilities to enable him/her to work efficiently in an intellectually and socially highly demanding environment

In general, it’s expected that applicants are healthy! This means more than just working out once a week for a while and then quitting. The kind of health they are looking for is one that comes from a lifetime of commitment to healthy practices.

Due to the high interest/large number of applications they receive, NASA is able to accept only the cream of the crop, the very best of the best applicants, to become astronauts. Most astronauts have at least a master’s degree, and many have doctoral degrees. Some astronauts come in with considerable flight training, SCUBA training, foreign language skills, scientific experience or even experience on expedition missions.

cady coleman

Cady Coleman – Photo Credit: NASA

Lastly, applications can only be submitted here for civilians. Those on active military duty should contact their respective military service for specific instructions.

Final Advice From Astronaut Abby

My advice to those seeking to become astronaut would be to use the above requirements, as well as resources from NASA’s website, to lay out a plan. Highlight each step, and how you will accomplish each step that you need to take in order to reach your goal. Most importantly though, I would tell all aspiring astronauts to focus on their study of the subject that they are passionate about. You will never be happier or more successful than when you are doing something that you love.

Astronaut Cady Coleman had this to add about her experience in this article: “The biggest challenge about being involved in the space program is the need to be able to be good at and know a lot about a lot of things,” Coleman says. “It’s not just chemistry anymore.”

Comments

  1. It was a good advice but I have a problem I’m not tall, my height is 4’11. I mean I don’t want to change my dream because since I was small I always wanted to be an astronaut. I’m on my last year of high school and I live in Puerto Rico. My dream is to work at the NASA and to be an astronaut bug I can’t because my height. Can you help me or give me advice or something. I really want to be in it.

    • My advice is to continue to work towards your dream, which starts with goals and your goals are a career that will allow you to apply to be an astronaut. The requirements could change by the time you would apply. It’s not guaranteed but then again becoming an astronaut is a long shot for anyone. Even if you don’t make it to astronaut you will end up in a great career if you follow your passion in your studies and career choices.

    • Hi,Ms. Harrison my name is Emma Rodriguez I am 11 years old and I have a huge dream of being an ASTRONAUT⭐️. I love the solor system and I love learning about it. When I read your story I was even more inspired and I think I have what it takes to be an ASTRONAUT ❤️ Do you think I have a shot PLEASE reply back and let me know what you think. Thank you Ms. Harrison you have inspired me!!!

    • VALERIA!!! I just checked NASA’s website and the minimum requirement is 58.5 inches, making you a half an inch above the minimum, dont quit the dream

      – A fellow hopeful astronaut

  2. Out of curiosity I had some extra questions!

    – Are there some degrees that are more prefered? (i.e. Biology > Environmental Science) and is there a definitive list of “accepted” degrees? (Like could exercise science count? Though I feel like it wouldn’t make your profile as competitive than other candidates)

    – Is there an age limit to applying? and will the good people of NASA guide you if you want to apply?

    – As a Mission Control Specialist, I assume there are varying jobs here? Are there doctors? It makes sense if there were?

    Thank you!! 🙂

  3. Hi fellow NASA crew members, my name is Eric, I love space I know just about anything about it. I wish to go as far as I can with my dream to be and astronaut. I am in 11th grade and I’m in AP courses and I plan to go to OSU for space and aviation. I’m here today to ask if I’m gonna need to know anything else other than what’s on this article to become and astronaut?

  4. Hello am fikile at south africa.i just want my dream come true,an i just want my mother to be proud about me.my dream tell me to be an astronaut.i want to achieve my goals everything in my life.

  5. Hey there! Omg first of all i just want to say your blog is great and the article i read was so motivational!! My names Abby to ahaha and i thought i was really cool how yours was too! Just wanted to say that its really inspiring to know im not the only one who thinks becoming an astronaut someday is a long shot! I hope everything turns well 🙂

  6. My passion for aviation started when I was 7 years old I was born in south america and raised in a honest and hard working envronment my mother taught me good values such having respect ans caring for others being honest and diciplined. From different fields aviation enebles me to cooperate and parcipate in development of my country performing activities involving carrying passengers EMS agroindustrial development and support military troop transport My pasion for flying has always come along with safety procedures as they relate to the human factors Im a hard working person with a genuine desire to improve my self on a daily basis and commitment to promote and maintain aviation and astronautics Safety. At domestic level I have been a pioneer of the application of these investigations and new developments and have been rewarded for my efforts in the development of aeronautical safety programs. Always my dream was a be Astronaut Im 50 years old would you please let me know if I can apply space camp civil program to make my dream come true ✈️thanks to consider my qualifications. FAA certified commercial pilot and ICAO pilot licence/instructor

  7. I am studying in 8th standard . It is my dream to become an astronaut in NASA .I am from India . My inspired person is kalpana chevala.
    When I was 8 year old I became more interested in science. This has brought me up to dream to become an astronaut. I have read all the requirements but since I am suffering from short sightedness like am very much motivated by the information given in the astronaut abby . And now I made a strong decition to continue studying more about how to become an astronaut. Can someone please help or give an advice .I just want to be a part of it.

  8. Thank you sooo much for this advice. Like you, I laid out a plan at an early age (junior in high school). My plan was to get a bachelors in aerospace from a good school (UW – check!) get a masters in a related field I was interested in (Georgia Tech, Propulsion/Combustion – check!), get relevant experience (Boeing Fuels Analysis – check! Although I do want more space related experience), get my instrument rated private pilots license and build flying experience (in progress, about to solo!), learn a language or two (currently learning Mandarin with Rosetta Stone. Russian will be next), and all the while swimming and staying in shape/healthy. I’m 5’10” with perfect vision and no diseases or dependencies.

    With all that said I still get discouraged sometimes. I’m not going to give up but it’s hard not to get discourages when you read current astronaut bios and you read all the awards and all that they have accomplished. I start having doubt and I start focusing on the small percent chance I have, or a gpa that might not be high enough, or the awards I haven’t won.

    I’m sure you felt this along the way as well and your advice in this piece was so helpful but maybe you could shed light on the psychological aspect of it?

    Thanks so much!

  9. My name is Theo and i want to be an astronaut at NASA or ESA i am good at math and sciences and the problem is that i cant remember my height and i dont know how powerful my eyesight and the major problem is that i stay very far at Botswana.

  10. Hello I am from India.Currently I am studying in class 12 with maths and physics. I wanted to be an astronaut.But I am much disappointed about NASA’s APOLLO 11mission or moon landing.So what should I do for my future.

  11. Astronaut means to go beyond limits it is such an difficult to become an astronaut .A person must be hard at work to become so

  12. Ive always wanted to be an astronaut to see whats out there but would military be my best choice to go to become a Nasa Astronaut?

  13. My name is Jasa Fa’amausili , My dream is to become an Astronaut. Not only would I be the Very First Samoan Astronaut, But I will also want to be the very first Female to attend the 2020 mission to mars. I’ve always wanted to be the first to volunteer to axes a black hole. I have all the requirements and I’m in Air Force JROTC… C/Bravo Senior Advisor. The Only problem that is stopping me in my track, is the military is no longer taking in any more Cadets. I want toy become an Fighter Piolet, ITS MY GOAL! Astronaut is my Dream, in which I hope comes true. What are some other options I could take to become a fighter piolet?

  14. Wow, what an advice. I have been inspired. I am on my last year of high school and I live in Ghana. To be an astronaut has been my dream since i was in primary 6. With this advice I will never think of giving up. THANK YOU.

  15. hi ! I am from India-Gujarat-Anand. , my 7 years want to know about astronaut life , What they eat & how they stay during journey of space center …….. her dream is ” Astroscientist ” …….

    • My 7th year old daughter “ Akshika “ want to know each & everything about astronaut’s ( how they stay in space shuttle & space Centre during journey, what food they eat ) …..

      She want to become a astronauts

  16. I have always wanted to be an astronaut although I don’t have 20/20 vision. Would that be a reason as to why I wouldn’t be able to become one?

  17. Does NASA give experience to the people to fly planes? I mean is it necessary to come from air force will NASA not provide us with this facility of providing experience of 1000 hrs in air.

  18. What are the top degree areas for astronauts, like mechanical engineer, electrical engineering, physicist, ect.? What are the top areas that are looked for by NASA and any other space stations?

  19. Is there a benefit to your application if you have flight experience? Is that specific to a pilot/commander application or is it important for either route? I am going to be applying to college soon and I plan to major in physics and attend graduate school to earn a doctorate degree in astrophysics because that is where my passion is. I am still considering applying for an Air Force ROTC scholarship and becoming a pilot to help my application. I know there isn’t a formula for becoming an astronaut but is there any advice you can give on my plan to pursue this dream? Would that experience give me the best chance for a mission control application or a pilot one? Does applying through the military affect my chances as opposed to a civilian applicant?

  20. There’s nothing I’d love more than to take on this profession but the requirements don’t seem to be that specific. I’ll be completing an associates in engineering next year. Is that a sufficient education?

  21. I have a question… Or two. It said that the applicant couldn’t have a disease. I have the beginning of a common thyroid autoimmune disease, do you think that little thing could trump my dream? Another thing… In high school, I went through an eating disorder but everything is definitely back on track now. Would a childhood thing put a stop to being an astronaut? Thanks

  22. I’m 12 years old and i really want to become an astronaut. The problem is i’ve never been good at math or science. My school does teach science but it’s not the science i like. And math, i just don’t like it. I hope i become an astronaut in the future, but until then, i will keep working on what i want.

  23. Thnx dude. I have desired to become an astronaut but with ur tips and advice, i think i can do it. From now onwards im going to work hard for the life i desired.im coming NASA.im coming for u.

  24. Thank you very much.It was very informative and gave guidance to go in right way to become an astronaut and explore the world beyond our world THE EARTH.

  25. Hi! This was an amazing reading experience…
    I want ur suggestion – I am an Indian Christian, and have just passed my 12 standard from Arts stream. I want to become an astronaut, but I’m confused about the subject I have to opt for my college, also about the collection of forms (or whatever) required to apply to NASA to become an astronaut. Please help.

  26. My name is Seth Angel Montoya-Onsurez I am 16 years old, I am from the United States. And ever since I was a little boy I have wanted to be an astronaut. I finished high school when I was 13 and I am now working on my second associates degree. Would it be a good idea to finish this second degree in nursing or stop and turn my Mathematics degree into a masters or doctoral degree? When can I sign up for the astronaut selection program? What are my best choices that would bring me closer to my life long passion a reality? Please I would love to know.

  27. Do you think its possible for me (if I work incredibly hard, of course) to still become an astronaut someday, even if I am currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Architecture? I really want to get a Master’s degree in physics or in math and maybe even get a doctorate degree some day. I’m just really passionate about both fields. I heard in some universities there are graduate programs on Space Architecture which is something I am very interested in. Do you think I could work for NASA someday following this career path? This would be truly a dream come true for me.

  28. My name is philaretus brown I am from Nigeria I am tall, physically fit. I love austronauts and i want to become like one. But the problem is that i want to start when i am young but another problem is that people are saying that the money is much… Please i need help.. And another, can one study geology and become an austronaut?

  29. Thank you so much for this. I’m beginning my freshman year in highschool in two weeks, and I’ve been wondering what I can do to accomplish my dream. I’ve wanted to be an astronaut for as long as I can remember, and I’ve had almost no idea how to get there. This really puts it straight and I know how to at least start off.
    My only concern is getting through the Navy- I know there are civilian pathways, but I feel like the military is the more sure one. A lot of it is based on your officers and superiors deciding whether or not they will let you complete post-grad school or take the U.S. Navy Aviation Selection test battery, which are both very important. What happens if I can’t do something as vital to the process as that?
    How do I get to post-grad school in the Navy?
    And worst of all, what if I pass everything and have my multiple Bachelor’s and 1,000 hours and all the physical requirements- but I am denied by NASA? Can I apply again? Or do I only get one chance?
    And does my time working as an astronaut count towards my 4 years from ROTC/ Naval academy, plus the 10 years for being a a pilot?
    If it does, do I have to be an astronaut for ten years? And if they decide they don’t want me halfway through, do I have to go back to active duty?
    Thank you so much, and I totally understand if you don’t know the answers to all these questions.

  30. Hey abby, thank you for your words, sharing your dream, the way you achieved your goals, your mindset and the information.

    I want to be an astronaut as well. But I didn’t had an easy life. Had many traumatic experiences and left secondary school when I was 14 years old. I live in Belgium and studied modern sciences the first two years in secondary school. Now I will turn 21 and I am finishing secondary school (science-math).
    I want to study Bioscience Engineering or physics and astronomy, and move out of Belgium. I want to live in the USA.

    I do have psychological problems but I am healing my own brain, body and the damage the state and I created.

    Is my dream possible? The life I lived was really the opposite of a healthy and a balanced lifetime, but it wasn’t my decision to live like this so I’m healing everything.

    Should I go for it, or let go of my dream?

  31. I am an ec engineering .. but my dream is to become an astronaut . Now i m confused as i dnt knw a proper way to achieve that .

  32. I am 13 years old and my dream is to become an astronaut but the thing which is scaring me is the height i don’t think when i grow up my height comes in between 58.5 – 75 inches that’s why I’m very worried about it and I’m a Pakistani i don’t think NASA choose me because I’m a Pakistani

  33. I also yearn to become a NASA astronaut. But I’m not U.S. citizen and also I’m from SriLanka. We don’t have space agencies here. However I am sure that my only passion is to join in NASA and to join in first crew to Mars. So I need some ways to continue my career and to join I NASA

  34. Hello, I’m within all of the physical requirements for being a mission specialist. I have taken 4 years of Spanish and I’m able to carry out a conversation in Spanish. I plan on getting scuba training and many other things. I would like to be an astrogeologist on a mission to Mars or the moon. What is your advice to what I should do?

  35. I am 15.i live in Myanmar and normal student.I wanted to become an Astronaut since i was 7.My dad thinks i’m going to be crazy.My friends laugh at my dream,whatever.
    My dream never disappeared. Dear NASA,I want to become one of your part sooner or later.I want to show those who how much i can do .

  36. I’m from Nigeria and been an astronauts have been my life dream ,just graduated from the university and i don’t know how to go about it pls any advice or help will do thanks.

  37. my problem is that i am not tall enough. i am only 146cm at age 14. will that effect me? and my greatest dream is to become an astronaut. i don’t wanna change it! please help me.

  38. All of these requirements seem to be common sense. But could you further explain what progressively responsible, professional experience is?

  39. Great advice but I have a question. If you do not have perfect eye sight at all and you get your eyes corrected to the requirement can you still become an astronaut?

  40. I’m from India really interested in being an astronaut. Can you suggest me steps on what I must do other than these. Now I’m at grade 11.

  41. I am in class 11 with science background in india…i want to became a astronut….please help me to achive me my goal..

  42. Very good advice,I’m trying to fill my dream of becoming a astronaut as I would love to go on the mars mission.im currently at high school,2 more years left before I carry on with my dream.Ive had this mars dream since I was a little boy,most people make fun of me at high school and say “You becoming a astronaut you must be joking”,one thing is I will never give up and try my best to reach the NASA mars mission or mars one mission.Never give up you will make it one day if you carry on,mistakes give you courage to go forward and turn better.

  43. I am mahendra mahan study in class 10th from india. I have known that three students of india selected in nasa by iit exam in 2013 without b.tec only after 12th class.I also wana join nasa after 12th class by iit exam. Give me suggetions for this.

  44. I have a few questions regarding some of the requirements.
    When the article above lists that “applicants must be free of drug dependency”, is it trying to articulate that all drugs, regardless of weather or not they are prescribed (such as Adderall/Prozac). , disqualify you from entering the astronaut core? In addition to this, if someone where to develop an anxiety disorder around age 15, however it might subside over time, (this is not uncommon) would that disqualify said astronaut even after a full recovery? lastly, what majors would you recommend to somebody hoping to someday go to space. I am extremely interested in all things chemistry, physics and biology related (especially quantum mechanics) and would love to obtain some guidance on this subject; i have heard that applied physics and orbital dynamics are very important things to know.

    Thanks for all the help! -JS

  45. My name is Debjoy Sarkar, My dream is to become an astronaut. My height is 1.85m and I am studying bachelor degree in biological science. I am a citizen of India.

  46. I will be there, I will make it..maybe not today, maybe not the next day…but I will be a pilot in space…mark my words.

  47. Hi my name is Alexis and I am 11 years old almost 12, my dream is to become an astronaut and go into space and see what’s really out there. Do you have any advice how to plan ahead right now when I am this young? Thanks!

  48. I am from a small village in India and I am in 7th standard I am very good in science and I hate maths. All I wanted to ask is “can I also be an astronaut without maths degree ? , can a scientist be an astronaut ?” my relatives say that I have a lot of time to achieve my dream but I don’t think so would you suggest me what I should do ? And one more thing my height is 6’0
    I am only of 13.

  49. My name is Maggie. I’m in 7th grade and would like to be an astronaut. I found this blog very helpful and inspiring. Thank you for this and just having the thought for spending your own time to help people you don’t even know. I’m wanting to be a mission specialist and it would be really amazing to be in the mission to Mars in the 2030s. This is going to help me strive harder for that goal, not dream. Thank you again! 😀

  50. Hi abby
    I just wanted to ask like how did u get 1000 hrs of pilot in command time in jet craft , were u in army? Can u plz suggest a way I can do this without joining the army?

  51. I am only 12 years old and I want to be a Pilot for NASA. I already know how I want to plan my life out. I need to be an astronaut and I know that I can. I will be tall enough. It is just my vision. It is absolutely horrible, I wear contacts. But I know that in the future they will have something to fix my visionary issues, and then I WILL walk in space no matter what.

  52. I am in 8th class and my dream is to be an astronaut.Can you tell me after passing my high school how many years does it take to become an astronaut???

  53. At what point should someone interested in being an astronaut apply for the position? Right after college? After 3 years of professional working experience? Is there an average age that most astronauts fall under?

  54. Those advices motivated me to continue doing what I’m doing to reach my goals.One day I will become an astronaut and a great scientist.I won’t give up even tho my path to become an astronaut is a hard path. I will do it!

  55. My high school exam isn’t really good and i don’t know whether NASA will ask for the high school (board exam)) mark sheet ? Will it? And besides now I’m working really hard to achieve my aim…..it wasn’t my dream since childhood and so I don’t have much information about NASA! Well now its my dream so I want to know about it! Also I’m from India ….and what do I have to do to get the citizenship of USA? And please tell give me a short summary of the requirements to enter in NASA !! Add me on Facebook titusmani01@gmail.com
    ….

  56. Well! This article helped me a lot to start working hard for my dream to come true . I will work to the end of my abilities to get into the space exploration .
    Thank you for giving such an inspiring and informational article .

  57. I am an Indian. I was first inspired by an encyclopidea about Black holes, quasars, pulsars…..so on and then a huge poster of the gallatic field that our universe is filled with. After that Kalpana’s journey to become one of the famous astronauts in NASA, although being and Indian. India never could have one proud daughter like her before. I hope to become one next. I am highly passionate about space programming. I wish to join one….But India’s a country where middle-class family can’t really aspire to think of opting such highly fascinating career. Here education’s only about how much one can aquire marks rather than knowledge. I want the world to know this shit. Can I still become one? I love science like hell. I am fit. Perfect helath, vision and whatever it takes to become an astronaut.

  58. My daughter has been interested in space exploration at a very early age. She is currently a senior in high school and is in the midst of choosing between two colleges: one she really loves, but is concerned that aerospace engineering is not the right fit for her; her other choice of college has an astronautical engineering program that is probably better suited for her, but the campus life and town didn’t compare to her first choice. She doesn’t consider herself an engineer, having a passion for design and tinkering; she desires more to travel into space. Although I’m sure astronauts need to know their spacecraft! Considering the other majors she could choose-math,science-she felt engineering was the way to go. She does excel in both math and physics, however. Any feedback and advice you could send our way would be greatly appreciated. Does she choose the college she loves, with a major that doesn’t fit, or go with her second-choice college that has a program that possibly is better suited with her passion? Or should she re-consider her major as an engineer, since she doesn’t feel she’s creative enough? Thank you for your time!

  59. Thanks for the advice hey… I’m still in high school and truly love astronomy. I don’t wanna give up my dream for anything and this really inspired me to focus more on my dream. I hope the steps I take bring me closer to becoming a astraunaut

  60. If you don’t mind, do NASA mind an astronaut applicant’s heart beat reat. If they do, can you please note out the range. And oh! I am from SriLanka, Asia. I have been dreaming -setting my massive goal- since i was 7 years, and i have been working hard for it since then. My country doesn’t provide anything with becoming an astronaut. I love maths and physics and cosmology. I found out that my heart beat is slighly higher after vigorous activities -comparitively abnormal- but haven’t given up hope. And my chances and possibilities a so low. According to the game theory, applicants out there seem to can outrun me. I am so desperate to serve science before my age of 30; like sir.Einstien said. Please if you don’t mind provide me with some valuable advice if you would like to. I am just turning out 15 this year. I already am an adrenaline junkie, but i still need a good vision.
    Спасибо
    Начал изучать русский год назад

  61. This is a fantastic article. Positive. Truthful. Encouraging. It is exactly what I tried to share with my son this evening after watching Hidden Figures. I will share this with him tomorrow. Thank you.

  62. I’m Indian.i just complete my diploma in mechanical engineering.so how can I be astraunot.as we know the study environment of India is not advance

  63. My situations never allowed me to dream big enough to be an Astronaut.

    Today my 4yr old kid told his mom that he wants to be a Pilot Astronaut. When i heard, I started searching on what it really means to dream that big.

    Thank you for putting together this article, It helped me understand my kid’s dream.

  64. Thank you so much this helped so much right now I’m going into the 8th grade and I’ve always wanted to be an astronaut and good thing I’m 5,3.

  65. I am an indian………
    my ambition is to become a astronaut
    this is what I had chosed when I was so young
    my aim is to work at nasa or other space agencies(popular)…..can you help with listing
    the courses which leads me to my goal
    ……….
    hopefully waiting for ur answer

  66. I am an Indian and I am studying electrical engineering in the best university in India. What path should I take to become an astronaut.

  67. Hi Abby, this post has given me a lot of insight on what it’s going to take to reach this dream, so thank you for that. I was wondering about the last quote from Cady Coleman, “it’s not just chemistry anymore. “ If I’m studying a specific field in hope that it lead to a position on a team in space, how broad do my study’s have to be? I do love science, so my study’s are not narrow, but if you could, I’d like to know what type of things I should be studying? I know this post is a few years old, but I’m hoping this reaches you!!

  68. Thank you so much for your detailed information regarding necessary requirements to apply as an astronaut. I am an aspiring individual who wants to become an astronaut someday. First of all, I know I’m not qualified since the very first requirement is to be a US Citizen. I don’t mind since I will become a US Citizen someday, hopefully! While waiting for it to happen, I want to start working on my other requirements. I graduated as a Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology in the Philippines and currently working as a Clinical Laboratory Scientist here in Southern California. I came over two years ago for the job and becoming an astronaut always interests me whenever I see those ads. I know the background education requirement to be able to be an Astronaut is supposed to be STEM. I wonder if my background education falls on the Technology category? If not, should I study those courses or I can take a Masteral degree relating to the STEM? Hope you can help me. Thank you.

  69. Thank you sir for this wonderful article. I’m a young girl, 17 years of age and will be starting my engineering course by next year. I’m a citizen of India and has dreams to work with NASA and then enter for the astronaut program. What do you advise me specially to do in my future years which would make me the CREAM OF THE CROP as you said above? Apart from the fact that I know I need to a citizen of USA

  70. Hello! Say, theoretically, you were not able to be an astronaut, or were not chosen. What would you do then? You would have spent your whole life working up to your most important long-term goal, only to be denied in pursuing it. So, I restate my question, what would you do then? I am fifteen years old, and I understand it’s a young age, but I am very serious about reaching the point of being accepted into a lifestyle I have always wanted to live- being an astronaut. Although, I fear that I will not be accepted. That fear does not stop me, but it scares me to imagine working so hard toward my goal, when I would have never been accepted.

    Thank you for taking your time to look over my response, it is greatly appreciated, as I imagine you are a very busy person. 🙂

  71. If the required NASA height to be an astronaut is between 58.5 and 76 inches and Valeria is 59 inches tall, I would say that she meets that requirement. While crew vehicle specifications could always change, as long as she stays strong and fit this should not be a problem for her.

  72. Good morning sir,
    I want to become an astronaut since I was in class 5th. I am from India and I want to work at NASA as astronaut like kalpana chawla. Now I am doing engineering in computer science after that what I have to do for being astronaut

  73. Good morning sir,
    I want to become an astronaut since I was in class 5th. I am from India and I want to work at NASA as astronaut like kalpana chawla. Now I am doing engineering in computer science after that what I have to do for being astronaut…

  74. My kid is in grade 6 of schooling. I we are from India. I she has a goal of becoming a astronaut. Nasa needs US citizenship and a 1000 hours jet experience. Could you suggest how can she do this…. Because to be in airforce she needs to be US citizen…. And obtain 1000 flying hours experience…..

  75. i say follow your dreams, i have a picture of apollo 11 on my wall. my uncle works at NASA and i would love to follow in his footsteps. Dont let anyone put you down always keep on working towards that dream.

  76. As you told to tell everyone what u want to become, but when I told everyone was against me, they all said “you can’t” just because I am not the topper of my class. If I am not the topper can’t I become an astronaut?

    Another problem is that I don’t have anybody to advise me, can you plz help me by your advices
    I am in class 7th

  77. Thanks! I had a dream to be an astronaut when I was a kid. I entered a competition to go to space camp, but unfortunately didn’t win. I wasn’t sure of the proper steps so unfortunately I ended up becoming a physical therapist. I wish that I would have perused science, engineering, and math as health care has been a terrible field with all of the hyper-regulation from the government. I’m so glad you are giving this great advise for those aspiring to be an astronaut!

  78. Hi, my name is Abby too! I suffer from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. No not “everything has to be perfect”, but what the disorder actually is. Intrusive thoughts that loop around in my brain. I am on medication, but the goal is to one day not need it, and I also go to counseling and therapy and see a Psychiatrist and psychologist. In the article, you mentioned that “The applicant must be free from any psychiatric disorders.” Does this mean that me having OCD automatically wipes my chances of being an astronaut away?

  79. thank you, my aim is to become an astronaut(ISRO) i am studying 9th std in india i wants to know i should study to become astronaut. please reply me in my email.

  80. How to become an astronaut if I am here in Philippines I wanted to become an astronaut but I have no much money to spend from my studies to become an astronaut.

  81. my dream me get to the moon but me 13 years old and study in 9th class plese nasa help me and me form pakistan please nasa help help help please

  82. I have a concern. I was diagnosed with Depression and anxiety as a kid. And I used to self harm and have been hospitalized, but I no longer suffer from either is there still a way I could get around the free of psychiatric disorder requirement? Or is the requirement life long? I know this affected me joining the military but this is my dream. It can’t just all be disqualified for something that happened a long time ago, can it?

  83. I loved reading your article! Was very informative, but I do have one question… I have received a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) from a car accident in 2014. Have not had any seizures or anything and will be training to obtain my pilot’s license for this year. Would having a TBI on my record disqualify me from becoming an astronaut? If so, what steps could I take in order to clear myself or who should I keep in communication with to improve my networking?

    Thank you for your time,

    Bailey Riddle

  84. i am intrested to become astronaut…but my height is 4.10… i don’t want to change my dream. Can i become as astronaut without citizenship ….

  85. Hi.. I am Prashant Mehta from India. actually I have done my diploma here. and I wanna do degree abroad but I want to became astronomers so which engineering line should I choose?

Trackbacks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *