The Canadian Space Agency is looking to hire two new astronauts and is accepting applications from Canadian citizens and residents through August 15. Some requirements are pretty standard, like a resume, a 1,000-word cover letter. There’s also a list of physical requirements, for things like height, weight, vision, and blood pressure, and a master’s or PhD in science or engineering is preferred.
But there’s something else considered essential to the job: communication, specifically an “ability to analyze and synthesize complex information and to communicate it to diverse audiences in a clear and simple manner.” That’s important for astronauts, since they not only have to prepare for the rigors of space travel, but also must act as a recruiter and ambassador for the Canadian space program.
In that regard, there are some big shoes to fill. Before he retired in 2013, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield became an Internet celebrity, garnering huge followings on social media and enthralling space watchers with his work, his photos, and his guitar playing. (His cover of David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” has been viewed more than 32 million times.)
New recruits for the space agency will need to take an entrance exam in September, followed by months of interviews, tests, training, and medical exams; they’ll also need a security clearance. The agency plans to pick the two astronauts by mid-2017. They will be trained in the US at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston.
Here’s where to go to apply.