Boys and Girls Club of Syracuse has QA Session with Astronaut Aboard International Space Station

Feb 23, 2018

Using the ham radio to contact Astronaut Mark Vande-Hei
Credit John Smith/WAER News

The Boys and Girls Club of Syracuse talked to an astronaut aboard the International Space Station Friday morning, asking him questions about his job and life in space.  The ISS was traveling at about 17,000 miles per hour as Astronaut Mark Vande-Hei took the time to answer a series of questions from the children. 12-year old Mhubiri was excited for the opportunity to talk to the astronaut.

 “I actually thought about being an astronaut so today was a very exciting event for me so I was very happy I was able to talk to him and ask him some questions.”

Astronaut Vande-Hei and the kids talked for about ten minutes before the connection was lost.  He became an astronaut when he realized the amount of good he could do for society.

 “I thought it was a cool job, but then as I got older and more mature, I realized that it’s a way to contribute to not just my own nation, but all of humanity. It also helps explore the limits of human existence and I think it’s a path of great success for humanity in the future.”      


While he loves being in space, Vande-Hei will return to Earth next Tuesday after being in orbit for five and a half months.  He says he has missed his wife’s cooking, but space has its perks.

The Boys and Girls Club of Syracuse at the Museum of Science and Technology.
Credit John Smith/WAER News

 “My favorite part about being on the space station is the people I work with and the close second would be the view that we have from up here.”

The MOST was one of 13 organizations in the country given the opportunity to chat via HAM radio.  Chief Program Officer Peter Plumley says they plan to apply to the program again next summer.  

 “Next summer when the RSVP comes out we’re going to get our application together and send it and we’re gonna stand on our success.”

Click below to listen to the full recording of the question and answer session with Astronaut Vande-Hei.