If Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone can be friendly exes, then there’s hope for all of us
If Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone can be friendly exes, then there’s hope for all...

Sarah Finnan

‘Happiness is not something that happens to you. It’s something you have to choose, everyday’
‘Happiness is not something that happens to you. It’s something you have to choose, everyday’

IMAGE

‘It was three in the morning when Lisa and Dave said goodbye’
‘It was three in the morning when Lisa and Dave said goodbye’

Sophie White

Bella Hadid said posting crying selfies on social helped her manage her ‘depressive episodes’
Bella Hadid said posting crying selfies on social helped her manage her ‘depressive episodes’

Sarah Finnan

Can we stop pretending men aren’t willing participants in marriage?
Can we stop pretending men aren’t willing participants in marriage?

Victoria Stokes

Francis Bourgeois: Trainspotter, Gucci model and close friend of Joe Jonas (apparently)
Francis Bourgeois: Trainspotter, Gucci model and close friend of Joe Jonas (apparently)

Sarah Finnan

‘I wake up exhausted’: how to get a good night’s sleep, according to an Irish sleep expert
‘I wake up exhausted’: how to get a good night’s sleep, according to an Irish...

Grace McGettigan

Mercury is in retrograde again: Here’s what it means for you
Mercury is in retrograde again: Here’s what it means for you

Grace McGettigan

Rixo has launched their first sustainable denim collection
Rixo has launched their first sustainable denim collection

Sarah Finnan

The best maternity leggings and jeans, according to new and expectant mums
The best maternity leggings and jeans, according to new and expectant mums

Lauren Heskin

Image / Editorial

The Changemakers: Dr Norah Patten on getting set to become Ireland’s first astronaut


By IMAGE
11th Jun 2018
The Changemakers: Dr Norah Patten on getting set to become Ireland’s first astronaut

In this month’s issue of IMAGE magazine, Orla Neligan talked to the Irish women who are making a big impact in their respective fields.

Dr Norah Patten

Scientist-astronaut

It’s fitting that the mantra “shoot for the stars, the sky is not the limit” is one scientist-astronaut Dr Norah Patten favours. Her life’s goal has been getting to space ever since a family trip to NASA when she was 11 years old, and she is firmly on course to be Ireland’s first astronaut.

Photo credit: Barry McCall

When asked how she challenges preconceptions, “keep pushing forward” is her reply. Not that she had many; she relishes a challenge and deems success as making a positive contribution to the world.

Who or what inspires you?

“Other people – I have had amazing mentors and friends who I look to for advice and inspiration.”

She recently established a new STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) product for children called Planet Zebunar, an interactive galactic adventure that promotes diversity and inclusion while introducing children to STEM concepts. “I didn’t set out to be an agent of change, I just wanted to share my experiences with others, especially children, to prove to them what was possible. I want to show people that no matter how big their ambitions are, nothing should hold them back.”

If she does become Ireland’s first astronaut, she’ll be bringing her camera and Plant Zebunar’s Astro Granny with her to space. “She’s a great character – a superhero granny that will help explain elements of space to younger people when I get home.” And that’s what Patten will continue to do – prove to a younger generation that you can be the scientist, the astronaut and the superhero too.

Biggest lesson you’ve learnt in your career?

“Never take anything for granted.”

Pick up this month’s edition of IMAGE magazine to see the article in full.