"Jeanette J. Epps" by NASA/JSC/Robert Markowitz / Public Domain

NASA: Jeanette Epps could become first Black woman to join ISS crew

Aug 26, 2020

By Jackie Wattles

Two years ago, NASA astronaut Jeanette Epps was slated to fly into orbit aboard a Russian spacecraft and become the first Black astronaut to serve as a crew member of the International Space Station.

At the last minute, Epps was removed from that assignment with no explanation.

Though more than a dozen Black Americans have traveled to space since Guion Bluford became the first to do so in 1983, none has had the opportunity to live and work in space for an extended period, as the ISS has enabled more than 200 astronauts to do since 2000.

On Tuesday, after years of speculation about why NASA removed Epps from her assignment, she was finally reassigned. NASA said she will join astronauts Sunita Williams and Josh Cassada on a 2021 mission aboard a Boeing-built Starliner spacecraft, a vehicle still under development that is expected to re-do a key test flight later this year.

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One comment on “NASA: Jeanette Epps could become first Black woman to join ISS crew”

  • I am excited for Jeanette’s adventure.  I am excited for her, but selfishly, I am excited because I plan to use her adventures in my science classes this coming term.  We’ve a revolution afoot and I am going to support and assist and (prolly most importantly) listen and learn.


    My high school has been approached by a student lead (Nationwide) group called “Diversify Our Narrative” and I’ve been attending the zoom meetings to see what it is all about.  I plan to change the narrative in my classroom and an awesome astronaut heading to the ISS is (I think) a great place to start!

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