Happy Birthday, Dr. Sally Ride!
Dr. Sally Ride became the first American woman to orbit Earth when she was launched aboard Challenger in 1983.
Sally Ride was born on May 26, 1951 in Los Angeles, California. She attended Stanford University where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics, a Masters degree in Physics and a Ph.D. in Physics. She applied to the astronaut corps after reading an advertisement in a newspaper. She entered the corps in 1978 and completed her training in 1979. Her first and second flights were aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger. While aboard Challenger she performed experiments into which kids had input. She left NASA in 1987 to teach at Stanford University. She went on to teach at the University of California at San Diego and head the California Space Institute. In 2001, she founded Sally Ride Science, a company dedicated to creating fun science programs for young learners. Dr. Ride was passionate about getting kids excited about Science. Because of this passion, she wrote several books for kids about space. Dr. Ride died July 23, 2012.