The first African American woman astronaut speaks at UNCW
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In September of 1992, Doctor Mae Jemison made history. She joined the crew aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavor, and spent more than a week in space; the first ever African American woman to do so. "The images that I remember are working really hard because I had a lot of experiments and a lot of work to do. Also, the vividness of seeing the earth and you know, here's this thin, shimmering, layer of light that you look at, and it's our atmosphere and to me it reminds me that we have a responsibility," said Jemison. When Jemison joined the space program, she was a medical doctor with additional degrees in chemical engineering and African and Afro-American studies. She served as a science mission specialist on the Endeavor. "It was good, what can I say? It was a neat thing, but I think it's more what you do with that platform when you come back," Jemison added. She spoke to a group of about 1,400 people at UNCW Thursday night, as part of the 26th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration. Jemison was introduced by seventh grader Brea Weaver, who won an oratory contest with a speech about Jemison. "Weaver said, “She's a real good role model, because perseveres other people to make them want to be just like her and follow their dreams to be what they can be." "When we look at public figures, they can be images of the possible. Parents and teachers and the folks that are around every day, they're the ones who are real role models," said Jemison. But there's no denying Mae Jemison is truly an inspiration to all. Jemison has a very long list of accomplishments. She currently lives in Houston and heads a medical devices company. She also founded an international science camp for children.

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