When Stephanie D. Wilson says she needs her space, she really means it. The 43-year-old Massachusetts native is a real-life astronaut and only the second African-American woman to be in space.
Currently a part of the crew of the space shuttle Discovery, Wilson and the six other astronauts docked safely at the International Space Station on Wednesday, despite having to do so without radar when an antenna broke down. Wilson is among just a few black astronauts overall who’ve space traveled – astronaut Robert Satcher and Leland T. Melvin were on the Atlantis space shuttle mission to the International Space Station last year.
Wilson joined NASA astronaut training in 1996 after graduating from Harvard University with an engineering science degree and from the University of Texas with a master’s in aerospace engineering. She says she knew she wanted to be an astronaut from the time she was 13 years old.