Forty years ago today, man first walked on the moon. I was still a few years away from even being a twinkle in my parents’ eyes, but I grew up reaping the benefits of the excitement about space exploration that followed that singular moment. In fact, until the Challenger accident, I wanted to be an astronaut when I grew up.
While the average American doesn’t seem all that interested in space anymore, researchers continue to study the stars in a wide variety of ways. Baylor’s media relations office rounded up comments from several Baylor researchers regarding those first footsteps on the moon.
Sociologist Dr. Larry Lyon points out that Americans’ expectations about the first moon landing were never fully realized, perhaps explaining why the national fervor for space faded. Education professor Dr. Wesley Null notes the importance of teaching today’s children about all that went into the space race of the 1950s and 1960s, an area that intersects science, history and social studies. And physicist Dr. Truell Hyde explains why space exploration is still important 40 years after Neil Armstrong’s “one small step.”
And who knows? Perhaps the astronauts of tomorrow are attending Baylor right now.
Sic ’em, everyone who has made space exploration possible in the past, present and future!