This past month, Christel House staff and students had the rare opportunity to meet a former North American Space Agency (NASA) astronaut, Dr. Don Thomas, as part of a nationwide space tour, aimed at inspiring a ‘Mars Generation’ among students.
Dr Thomas spoke about his own journey of dreaming to become an astronaut ever since he was six years old. He applied to become a NASA astronaut four times, before he was finally approved at age 35. He said it took hard work and persistence, but eventually his dream became a reality. The veteran of 692 space orbits of the Earth encouraged students to keep their eyes on the stars and reach for their dreams, no matter how impossible they may seem.
The visit to Christel House, which was made possible courtesy of our donor, The Amdec Group and STEM-based educational NGO, Living Maths. Christel House also allowed for a question and answer session where students asked thought-provoking questions and shared their own dreams. Noni A, a Grade 10 student at #ChristelHouseSA shared how he would like to become an Astrophysicist one day and Ammarah A, a Grade 1 student mentioned that she really wants to be an astronaut.
Thomas says that Christel House with its’ proud academic record and focus on STEAM subjects may very well produce the next generation of astronauts and space scientists. “I saw a lot of excitement and sparkles in the kids’ eyes. Maybe Christel House learners, who are part of what we call the Mars Generation, will be amongst the first humans to set foot on Mars in 20 or 25 years’ time. That would be amazing, and I hope I can see that day,” said Thomas.