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Trailblazing Women: reading informational text; Mae Jemison 7


Read the passage.

Mae Jemison, Astronaut

  1. Mae Jemison and her six fellow crew members were strapped into their seats racing toward the stars on a giant fireball. It had been two minutes since liftoff, and they were now above the atmosphere. The rocket boosters that had created the additional thrust needed to escape Earth’s gravitational pull had burned off their fuel, and were now separating from the shuttle. There was a single, bright flash in the window. Then the boosters plummeted toward the ocean while the Endeavour and her crew blasted toward space.
  2. Jemison worked hard in school for many years to pursue her dream of becoming an astronaut. In fact, she started studying chemical engineering at Stanford University when she was only 16 years old. After earning her bachelor’s degree, she went to Cornell University where she studied medicine. And now, in just a few moments, on September 12, 1992, she would become the first African American woman in space. It was a major milestone for the space industry and signified to the world that NASA cared more about an astronaut’s intellect than their race or sex.
  3. Jemison’s path was not without bumps. Women were not always considered equal in the broader scientific community, and were often overlooked for important studies and positions. One science professor in college even questioned why Jemison would be taking his class. Despite the circumstances, Jemison pressed on.
  4. Now, with the rocket boosters still falling beneath them, the main engines roared and the shuttle accelerated to 25 times faster than the speed of sound. The pressure from the incredible rate of acceleration had built and built, making the space travelers feel like they were being crushed in their seats! Until finally, they reached orbit and cut the main engines. The astronauts looked around in awe. This would be their home for the next eight days. Mae knew that there was important medical research to be done—but not yet. First, she would pause and take in this spectacular moment. Mae unbuckled her seatbelt and floated like a balloon as she stared down at the blue marble below.
The details included in paragraph 2 and 3 reveal that—
Choose 2 answers: