NASA will seek greater diversity of astronauts

(ORDO NEWS) — NASA has announced its plan of action to “solve the problem” of diversity and accessibility that has plagued the space agency for decades.

NASA is making efforts to diversify its astronaut pool: the requirements for astronaut candidates are no longer limited to fighter pilots.

Instead, the only criteria is that applicants must be US citizens and have a master’s degree in STEM (science, technology, engineering, or mathematics).

The first batch of graduates from the Artemis Lunar Program included six women and four people of color, the agency proudly announces.

It also announces its plan to land the first woman and the first person of color on the moon as part of the Artemis 3 mission, which does not launch until 2025.

That being said, according to a 2019 study, about 40% of black and 37% of Hispanic STEM students switched majors during their studies, compared to 29% of white students.

NASA’s latest step towards inclusion is the Equity Action Plan, part of the Equal Mission Initiative. Through it, the agency will increase the use of contractors and businesses from low-income communities, improve grant delivery to these communities, use geoscience and socioeconomic data collected by NASA to address some of the environmental challenges faced by low-income communities, and increase access to people with limited knowledge of English.


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