In January of 1992, Roberta Lynn Bondar made Canada very proud when she became the first female Canadian to go into space. She had always found space fascinating from when she was little, and she believes this was what led her towards her career as an astronaut.
Roberta Bondar was born December 4, 1945, in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. In high school, her excellence in her science and mathematics courses eventually took her to space. After high school, Roberta Bondar went to the University of Guelph for a degree in zoology and biology. in 1968, she graduated from the University of Guelph and decided to continue her education at the University of Western Ontario for a Master's Degree. At the University of Toronto, she took her Ph.D. Roberta Bondar went to medical school at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario after her six years of studying. At this medical school, she became a doctor and her specialty was neurology. Roberta Bondar had a specific interest in neurology, which is the study of how the eye works, and how the eyes work with the brain to produce vision. .
Out of thousands of applicants, Dr. Bondar was selected as one of the six original astronauts in December 1983. After many years of training, she became Canada's first female astronaut when she flew on the space shuttle Discovery from January 22-30, 1992. She performed life science and material science experiments in the Spacelab and on the mid-deck, as she was a payload specialist. .
Since Dr. Bondar's flight in 1992, she has written a book, 'Touching the Earth'. In this book, she speaks of her love for the planet and the impact of achieving a dream. Dr. Bondar has also photographed all of Canada's national parks for a millennium project entitled 'Passionate Vision - Discovering Canada's National Parks', which began touring Canada as an exhibition at the Canadian Museum of Nature in June of 2000. It completed a four-month showing at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto and opened in April of 2001 at the Regional Art and Historical Museum in London, Ontario.