NASA just announced that Jeanette Epps will be a crew member aboard the International Space Station for a 2018 mission. She is the first African-American in this role. This news coincides with the nationwide release of the movie Hidden Figures, about the African-American women who helped NASA send John Glenn into space in the sixties.
So far, NASA has sent 14 black astronauts into space, but none have stayed on the ISS. Part of this can be attributed to the dearth of minorities in the STEM fields. Epps’s new post is an important milestone.