A former astronaut lays out the personal qualities, preparation, and training required to join the select group of those who have traveled into space.
As “Dr. Dave” and his co-author make clear, there is no single track to acceptance into one of the highly competitive astronaut-training programs, but there are several general prerequisites—from resilience and the ability to be part of a team to finishing grad school and working for some years in a STEM (or STEAM) field. Then there is the challenging training itself, much of which takes place underwater and in simulators (with, to be sure, occasional rides on the renowned “vomit comet”), which eventually leads to specific mission preparation. All of this is presented in general terms, with a mix of descriptions and side comments, bulleted lists, small color photographs, and cartoon views of a multicultural cast of young aspirants working their ways through to a final “Class of 2026” group picture in space suits. But even for readers who “pursue your dreams on Earth,” the author concludes, “training like an astronaut will help you be the best you can be.”
As Williams puts it (and he should know), “the gain is totally worth the pain!” (further reading) (Informational picture book. 7-11)