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Failure is Not an Option: Interview with NASA Astronaut Dottie Metcalf-Lindenburger

Our interview with NASA astronaut Dottie Metcalf-Lindenburger, part of our series titled Failure is Not an Option, asks crowd sourced questions to reveal what life is like in space and how Dottie, as a woman astronaut, continues to inspire young women to pursue careers in STEM.

As the first installment of our “Failure Is Not An Option” summer series—an ode to people who have pushed the boundaries of space exploration, our interview with Dottie Metcalf-Lindenburger includes questions that our listeners shared with us on social media and revealing answers from Dottie about astronaut bands, sweating in space, and how she deals with the pressure of being a role model to young girls who dream of a future in space. Dottie’s first memorable encounter with failure was being last to finish a 600-yard dash in middle school, an event that pushed her to become better at sports as she grew older. Dottie acknowledges that “failure is one of the best ways to learn in life,” and her failure at that race led her to becoming a great runner in high school and college—both of which were important to her success as an astronaut. When asked about how often astronauts argue about politics in space, Dottie is happy to share that on a space mission “there’s no room to have fights over things you have no control over.” Dottie continues to advocate for greater inclusion of women in STEM, and believes that seeing positive representations of women and people of color in space is key to helping people see themselves as astronauts, engineers, and the next space explorers.

Want to learn more about the history of space exploration? Check out our exhibition Destination Moon: The Apollo 11 Mission to see how NASA landed the first humans on the Moon in 1969.

Host: Sean Mobley
Producer: Keny Dutton
Webmaster: Layne Benofsky
Content Marketing Manager: Irene Jagla


Thank you to Alaska Airlines for sponsoring this episode of the Flight Deck Podcast.


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