Meet NASA Astronaut Zena Cardman: Antarctic Adventurer And Trained Poet

Zena Cardman, a future astronaut, seen here in Antarctica.

Indeed, the ISS is where she’ll be headed first, but soon after, “our eyes will turn outwards beyond low-Earth orbit, just like it did with the Apollo program.” Cardman says that whether it’s an asteroid, the Moon, Mars, or anywhere else, she’ll be fine. “I’ll happily go wherever they send me.”

Cardman has done much and explored a lot of Planet Earth in the name of science, and she’s not even 30 yet. That makes her a powerful ambassador for women in STEM – and now, she’s also going to be an astronaut. It’s a one-in-a-billion legacy, and something she doesn’t credit to hard work alone.

“Part of it is that I followed what interested me,” she notes. “But more importantly, I got lucky – I had mentors that wrote back and said they would help me, who took a chance on me when I was just some undergrad.

“I will be forever grateful to them – and to my family of course, who let me go on all these crazy adventures, and who are still supporting me on this new, wild adventure.

“I think I speak for everyone in this class when I say, we haven’t done this alone. That’s for sure.”

The Class of 2017. NASA


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