Hello STEM families, it is time to be inspired by amazing real life super heroes. People who have devoted their lives to the STEM fields and accomplished so much. Their studies impacted so many people, and can impact you and your children as well! Role models play an important part in a child’s development. Please, share these stories with them. Give them the chance to be amazed by the world of STEM!
Today’s super hero is Roberta Bondar. She is Canada’s first female astronaut and the first neurologist to go to space! Our STEM Super Hero is a great series because we get to talk about real life heroes. Today’s hero has had some outstanding achievements and is an inspiration for all girls in STEM! Share these STEM Super Hero stories with your children. We believe that introducing these heroes to your children will make them believe that anything is possible!
Check out our “Girls in STEM” page on our website!
Many children dream about going to space. There are few who are fortunate enough to actually achieve their dream. In reality, it is much more hard-work, but luck can help too! Dr. Roberta Bondar is one of those few and she saw her dream come true in 1992. She became the first female astronaut and the first female researcher and neurologist to go to space. Dr. Bondar was born in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, on December 4th, 1945. As a child she was fascinated by science and often entered annual science fairs at her elementary school. She had such a passion for science that she even had her father build her a lab in their basement where she conducted many experiments.
Dr. Bondar’s love for science continued and she eventually graduated from the University of Guelph with a Bachelors of Science in Zoology and Agriculture. She also holds a Master of Science in experimental pathology from the University of Western Ontario. It doesn’t end there. She also has a Doctor of Philosophy in neuroscience from the University of Toronto and a Doctor of Medicine from McMaster University. But it is not all about studying, Dr. Bondar also has an adventurous side as she has received her certification in sky diving and parachuting.
Her love for science and her adventurous mindset has enabled her to become one of only six Canadian astronauts selected in 1983 for the first International Microgravity Laboratory Mission. She started training to become an astronaut in 1984 and in 1992 was designated a Payload Specialist. As an astronaut she flew on the NASA Space Shuttle Discovery (STS-42) for a Microgravity Laboratory Mission. During the mission she performed experiments in the Spacelab from January 22nd – 30th in 1992.
Dr. Bondar has received several awards in her life. On June 28, 2011, she received a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame becoming the first astronaut to receive this honour. In her hometown there is a pavilion and a marina named after her. She has also been honoured with a marker on Sault Ste. Marie’s Walk of Fame. Dr. Bondar’s numerous accomplishments endear her to Canadians as a true female STEM Champion. Her life story serves as an inspiration to children around the world and she has proven that anything is possible if you dedicate yourself to achieving it.
Importance Of STEM
It’s incredible how these stories can show us that nothing is impossible as long as you dedicate yourself. Be sure to share these stories with your children so they can truly learn about real life superheroes. If you want your child to learn the importance of STEM and one day make a difference in the world, get them started today by signing them up to STEM Camp 2019.
Canadian Space Agency. (n.d.). Retrieved April 18, 2019 from https: http://www.asc-csa.gc.ca/eng/astronauts/canadian/former/bio-roberta-bondar.asp