Friday, October 27, 2017

Dream of Stars - Anousheh Ansari

Ray and I enjoyed another interesting speaker at UT Arlington. Their Maverick Speaker Series brings in vibrant folks who encourage us to dream and dare. Anousheh Ansari was the first female private space explorer. Also the first Iranian and Muslim in space. Her eight days aboard the International Space Station completed a dream she had as a little girl, and also pushed her to think further about science, technology, and the future.

Ansari is the co-founder, chairwoman, and CEO of Prodea Systems - a company constantly seeking innovations in global access to technology. Her talk was very interesting. As a young girl in Iran, she drew pictures of rocket ships and dreamed of space travel. Her parents were able to flee the worn torn country in upheaval and come to America. Here, she pursued a math career but always had her head in the stars. Obviously a smart entrepreneur, her hard work did pay off.

She was able to pay for a trip in a Soyuz. Her discussion of the training, the ride in the Vomit Comet test, learning beginning Russian, etc was humorous. The preparation was rigorous. The pictures aboard the ISS - weightlessness, doing experiments, and the views from space - were awe-inspiring.

Now back on earth, Anousheh Ansari works to promote STEM education, especially for girls. She hopes to inspire youth to dream big and not give up. Look to the stars and see a future.

15 comments:

  1. This was so interesting to read Joanne, facts that perhaps many did not know. Well done.

    Yvonne.

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    1. thanks. You would have enjoyed hearing her speak

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  2. She sure is one many can look up to. If one wants it, go for it.

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  3. She sounds like a fascinating woman!

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    1. I would like to have heard more. She was super smart and very engaging

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  4. Wow, you guys have heard some amazing speakers through that series. This one sounds... stellar. Seriously, I would have loved to hear her tell her story. Thanks for telling us a little bit of it second-hand.

    Have a super weekend.

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    1. yep. The University really works on this program and the turnout is great. She was fascinating.

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  5. She sounds like an inspirational lady. The talk must have been super interesting!

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    1. indeed. very impressive woman. Quite enterprising

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  6. Hi Joanne - that's great you live near enough to UT Arlington to be able to attend these talks ... she does sound an extraordinary lady - as well as being very talented. I enjoyed find out more about her via Wiki and your notes ... looks like it was a memorable evening - cheers Hilary

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    1. yes, we're fortunate to be near such a program. There's so much to do in our "backyard". We just have to make an effort. You would love all the choices.

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  7. People that go to space amaze me. It's so overwhelming to think of going up there and all the training....and it has to be in the back of your mind, 'I hope they can get me back to earth'.

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