Over 18,300 apply for 14 astronaut jobs

[Jobs ★★]


(P1) A record number of people applied to be a NASA astronaut. Over 18,300 people applied for 14 jobs. This is a record. NASA will now spend 18 months choosing the best people. It will announce the successful applicants in the middle of 2017. NASA said: “It’s [great] to know so many people recognize what a great opportunity this is to be part of NASA’s exciting mission. I look forward to meeting the men and women talented enough to rise to the top.”

(P2) Many people want to work on the space program. NASA said: “So many Americans from diverse backgrounds want to personally contribute to…our journey to Mars.” The top applicants will have an interview and then get two years of training. They will learn things such as spacewalking, teamwork and operating spacecraft. They will also learn Russian. They could go to the International Space Station or work for space tourism companies, such as SpaceX.

WORDS: 154

SOURCE: http://www.breakingnewsenglish.com/1602/160222-astronauts-1.html

VOCABULARY: applicants, recognize, mission, diverse, spacewalking, tourism


If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.

  1. Briefly, summarize the content of the article in your own words.
  2. If you were given the opportunity, would you apply for this job? Why or why not?
  3. Would you like to learn Russian? Why or why not?
  4. Do you think people will take vacations (tourism) in space someday? Why or why not?
  5. Do you think people will live on Mars or another planet someday? Why or why not?


What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • Record number of people (P1)
  • Look forward to (P1)
  • Rise to the top (P1)
  • Contribute to (P2)
  • Top applicants (P2)

Cambly Practice Button

Image source: Credit: Shutterstock http://www.acsh.org/news/2016/08/05/space-flight-causes-drop-in-t-cell-maturation-in-astronauts

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