High School Student’s RocketHub Project

Abby Harrison - Astronaut AbbyFifteen-year-old Abigail Harrison has a big dream, to be the first astronaut to Mars.

She is currently using the crowd funding website RocketHub to raise money to fund a trip to Baikonur in Kazhakstan to watch her mentor, Astronaut Luca Parmitano KF5KDP, blast-off to the International Space Station at the end of May.

Almost two years ago, on the way home from the final launch of STS 134 Endeavour space shuttle, Abby met and interviewed Italian astronaut Luca Parmitanoo. Luca agreed to become her mentor, and for the last couple of years, he has stayed in touch and offered advice.

On Friday, April 26 Abby took part in a Google+ hangout with Luca KF5KDP, she writes:

The interview was facilitated by the Public Insight Network which is a part of American Public Media. I was so excited to have this opportunity with Luca before he launches on May 28, 2013  to live on the International Space Station (ISS) for six months. We had an awesome chat about both of our passions for space and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) as well as about Luca’s exciting work on the ISS this year.

We also discussed my exciting opportunity to serve as Luca’s Earth Liaison. In the chat, Luca talked about meeting me for the first time, saying, “I like passionate people. Any kind of passion. Any kind of interest in anything that keeps you inspired…I saw a lot of myself in Abby.” He emphasized his excitement and the importance of my job as Earth Liaison and that he was happy his experience could be used to inspire kids throughout the world.

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