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Arts & Culture

MAKERS: Season 2: Women In Space

1978 class of women portrait with astronaut suit.
Courtesy of MAKERS
1978 class of women portrait with astronaut suit.

Airs Tuesday, July 30, 2019 at 11 p.m. on KPBS TV

Six documentaries in the MAKERS project feature groundbreaking American women in different spheres of influence: war, comedy, space, business, Hollywood and politics.

Each program will profile prominent women and relate their struggles, triumphs and contributions as they reshaped and transformed the landscape of their chosen vocations.

On "Women In Space," trace the history of women pioneers in the U.S. space program. Some, like aviators Wally Funk and Jerrie Cobb, passed the same grueling tests as male astronauts, only to be dismissed by NASA, the military and even Lyndon Johnson, as a distraction.

It wasn’t until 1995 that Eileen Collins became the first woman to pilot a spacecraft.

The program includes interviews with Collins, as well as Sally Ride’s classmates Shannon Lucid, Rhea Seddon and Kathryn Sullivan, and features Mae Jemison, the first woman of color astronaut, and Peggy Whitson, the first female commander of the International Space Station.

The hour ends with the next generation of women engineers, mathematicians and astronauts — the new group of pioneers, like Marleen Martinez and Dava Newman, who continue to make small but significant steps forward.

Watch Videos:

Visit the MAKERS project official website for the largest video collection of women's stories.

Join The Conversation:

MAKERS is on Facebook, Google +, tumblr, Pinterest, and you can follow @MAKERSwomen on Twitter.

This episode originally aired in 2014.