10 Things to Know: Sally Ride

The first American woman (and possibly the first LGBT person) in space will receive a posthumous honor from the president this week.

BY Michelle Garcia

November 19 2013 7:00 AM ET

2. Ride answered an ad in the newspaper to join NASA. Yeah. It was that simple. She was finishing up her Ph.D. in physics at Stanford when the agency put out an ad looking for astronaut candidates. Ride was one of 8,000 applicants for the training program. Thirty-five people (including six women) were accepted into the astronaut corps, and Ride was selected as an astronaut candidate in 1978. "It was always comforting that there were six of us women, not two," she told the Harvard Business Journal weeks before her death. "It made it clear that NASA was committed to really bringing more gender diversity into the astronaut corps."

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