Feb 5, 2024 - News

UNC alum Zena Cardman will be heading to space for the first time

Four astronauts wearing blue jumpsuits pose for a group photo

Zena Cardman, far right, will be heading to space for the first time later this year. Photo: NASA

Zena Cardman, an astronaut who graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill, is set to make her first voyage into space.

Driving the news: NASA announced Cardman as part of a four-person crew embarking on NASA's SpaceX Crew-9 mission.

  • The mission could head to the International Space Station as early as August.
  • The crew will be piloting SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft.

Details: Cardman — a native of Williamsburg, Virginia — has two degrees from UNC: a bachelor's degree in biology and a master's in marine sciences, per NASA. She has been an astronaut since 2017.

  • At NASA, she has also been supporting station operations and development for lunar surface exploration.
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