First American woman in space to be honored with the Sally Ride Forever Stamp

Posted at 10:52 PM, May 21, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-22 01:52:38-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - The U.S. Postal Service will dedicate the Sally Ride Forever stamp to America’s first woman in space.

The first-day-of-issue dedication ceremony will take place Wednesday at the University of California San Diego, where Dr. Sally Ride taught.

After the ceremony, Sally Ride Science at UC San Diego will honor her with a 6:30 p.m. panel discussion on women in leadership.

Ride dazzled the nation as a trailblazing astronaut, brilliant scientist, and dedicated educator.

Her journey to space began in 1977 while she was finishing her Ph.D. in physics at Stanford University. 

She saw an article in the student newspaper saying NASA was seeking astronaut candidates, and for the first time, women were allowed to apply.

Five years later, Ride became the first American woman to reach space when she launched in the Challenger for a six-day expedition.

She was 32 at the time, making her the youngest American to go to space.

After retiring from NASA in 1989, she took a job as a physics professor at UC San Diego and became the director of the university’s California Space Institute.

Ride used her experiences in space to explain difficult physics concepts to her students.

In 2001, she co-founded Sally Ride Science, a company dedicated to fostering interest in STEM fields among children, especially girls.

Ride was honored for her contributions to science and space exploration with the NASA Space Flight Medal and the NCAA's Theodore Roosevelt Award. She was also inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame and the Astronaut Hall of Fame before she died in 2012 after battling pancreatic cancer.

Ride impacted generations of students and the future of American space exploration with her tenacity and dedication to educating.

WHEN: Wednesday, May 23 at 5 p.m. 

WHERE: The Price Center, University of California San Diego

COST: The event is free and open to the public. It will also be streamed live on the U.S. Postal Service Facebook page.