Brown alumna, fellow astronaut participate in first-ever all-female spacewalk


PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Brown University alumna and NASA Astronaut Jessica Meir was one of two women to participate in the first-ever all-female spacewalk Friday.

Meir and her fellow astronaut Christina Koch are installing new batteries and replacing a faulty power unit outside the International Space Center (ISS).

Meir, who received her bachelor’s degree in biology from in 1999, became the first Brown alumna to head to space as part of a special mission to the ISS.

She was tapped by NASA in 2013, according to the agency’s website, and in addition to her degree from Brown, she holds a Master of Science in Space Studies from the International Space University and Doctorate in Marine Biology from Scripps Institution of Oceanography.

The first all-female spacewalk was supposed to happen back in March, but only one medium-sized torso spacesuit was available, meaning both women could not participate.

Since then, NASA has designed a more one-size-fits-all spacesuit.

In 1984, Kathy Sullivan was the first American female astronaut to walk in space. She said this all-female spacewalk is truly history in the making.

“Let’s do the math, it’s ’84 to 2019,” she said. “That’s a long time.”

Meir was scheduled to speak with Brown students Friday afternoon, but the event was canceled. University officials said the event will be rescheduled for a later date and time.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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