Floridian Dr. Frank Rubio will join the rest of NASA’s first class of astronaut candidates to graduate under the Artemis program, for a graduation ceremony and media opportunity Friday, Jan. 10, at the agency’s Johnson Space Center in Houston.
After completing more than two years of basic training, he will become eligible for spaceflight assignments to the International Space Station (ISS), Artemis missions to the Moon, and future missions to Mars.
The ceremony will air live on NASA Television and the agency’s website. The new graduates also will be available for in-person and remote media interviews following the ceremony.
To participate, media must submit requests for credentials and interviews to Johnson’s newsroom at 281-483-5111 by 5 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 7. Those following the briefing on social media may ask questions using #AskNASA.
The class includes 11 NASA candidates, as well as two Canadian Space Agency (CSA) candidates, selected in 2017. The NASA candidates, including Rubio, were chosen from a record-setting pool of more than 18,000 applicants. The CSA candidates have been training alongside their NASA classmates.
Rubio, a U.S. Army lieutenant colonel, was born in Los Angeles and now calls Miami home. He earned a bachelor’s degree in international relations at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, and a doctorate of medicine from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland. Rubio has accumulated more than 1,100 hours as a Blackhawk helicopter pilot, including 600 hours of combat and imminent danger time. He was serving as a surgeon for the 3rd Battalion of the Army’s 10th Special Forces Group at Fort Carson, Colorado, before coming to NASA.