Dr. Ride applied to the astronaut program after reading an ad in a newspaper. More than 8,000 men and women applied to the space program that year. Of the 35 individuals accepted, six were women. One was Sally Ride.
Sally Ride was born on May 26, 1951 in Los Angeles, California. As a young girl, she wanted to become a professional tennis player and, at one time, was a ranked player on the junior tennis circuit. She attended Stanford University where she earned four degrees. Dr. Ride has a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics. She also has a Masters degree in Physics and a Ph.D. in Physics. She was accepted into the astronaut corps in 1978 and completed her training as a mission specialist in 1979. On June 18,1983 she became the first American woman to orbit Earth when she flew aboard Space Shuttle Challenger. Her second flight was also aboard Challenger in 1984. Dr. Ride was a member of the team chosen to investigate the explosion of Challenger in 1986. She left the astronaut corps in 1987 to join the faculty of Stanford University, her alma mater. Dr. Ride was committed to promoting science and math education to all learners. After leaving Stanford University, she taught at University of California at San Diego, and headed the California Space Institute. In 2001, she founded Sally Ride Science, a company dedicated to fun science experiences for young learners, and wrote several books for kids about space. Dr. Ride died on July 23, 2012 from pancreatic cancer.
While a member of the astronaut corps, Sally Ride performed which job assignment?
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