UT alum, astronaut Scott Kelly to speak at UTK - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UT alum, astronaut Scott Kelly to speak at UTK

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NASA astronaut Scott Kelly NASA astronaut Scott Kelly

Scott Kelly, the U.S. astronaut who recently returned from a record-breaking year in space, will be a featured speaker August 15 event at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville.

Tickets to attend the Aug. 15 event at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, featuring ill be available starting Aug. 1. A limited number of free tickets will be available for the campus community and the general public. Individuals are limited to four tickets.

The event will begin at 5:30pm in Thompson-Boling Arena. 

UT faculty and staff can pick up tickets in UT's First-Year Studies office, Room 217 of Greve Hall. General public tickets will be available from the ticket office in Thompson-Boling Arena and at Union Avenue Bookstore, 517 Union Ave., Knoxville.

Kelly's visit celebrates the Life of the Mind program, part of First-Year Studies 100, a class that gives new students their first taste of college studies. As part of the 2016-17 program, freshmen are asked to read "Leaving Orbit: Notes from the Last Days of American Spaceflight" by Margaret Lazarus Dean, a UT associate professor of English. Students are also asked to complete a written response to the book, participate in a Welcome Week discussion session and attend the Scott Kelly event.

Dean and Kelly, who is a UT graduate, are currently collaborating on a book that will explore the future of space travel and tell Kelly's story about his historic mission. "Endurance: My Year in Space and Our Journey to Mars" is scheduled for publication in November 2017.

The event will be a discussion between Dean and Kelly.

Afterward, a community fair will be held in Thompson-Boling Arena. Those attending may have a chance to meet Dean and have her sign their copy of "Leaving Orbit." They may also have the chance to meet Kelly and get his autograph.

Kelly's space stay helped lay the groundwork for the future of space travel and exploration. During the event, Kelly will talk about some of the life lessons he's learned during his 20 years with NASA and on his most recent yearlong, 143-million mile adventure—including lessons on leadership and teamwork, personal stories of perseverance, and the path that led him to secure his place in history.

Kelly's historic mission lasted from March 2015 to March 2016. He and Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko conducted experiments, reconfigured station modules, and captivated the world with live interviews and photos from the International Space Station.

The mission also included the Twins Study, in which Kelly's identical twin brother, retired NASA astronaut Mark Kelly, served on the ground as a control model in an unprecedented experiment to understand how space affects the human body.

Prior to his career with NASA, Kelly served 25 years in the U.S. Navy, retiring as an experienced aviator and decorated captain.

Doors to Thompson-Boling Arena will open at 4 p.m. and standard security protocol will be in place. For faster admission, those attending should not carry bags or purses. Public parking will be available in the G-10 parking garage on Phillip Fulmer Way near the arena.

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