NASA chose 12 new astronauts Wednesday from its biggest pool of applicants ever, hand-picking seven men and five women who could one day fly aboard the nation’s next generation of spacecraft.
The astronaut class of 2017 includes doctors, scientists, engineers, pilots and military officers from Anchorage to Miami and points in between. They’ve worked in submarines, emergency rooms, university lecture halls, jet cockpits and battleships. They range in age from 29 to 42, and they typically have led the pack.
Vice President Mike Pence welcomed the group during a televised ceremony at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. He offered President Donald Trump’s congratulations and noted that the president is “firmly committed to NASA’s noble mission, leading America in space.”