To Infinity and Beyond

By: Rebekah Duntz and Alexandra Coultrup
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Florida Tech students in the Physics and Space Sciences Department may soon see a famous new face at the front of their classrooms.

In an interview on Aug. 6 with Florida Today’s Matt Reed, President Anthony J. Catanese said astronaut Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin, Ph.D. will become a professor of space science at Florida Tech.

“We’ll also be establishing the Buzz Aldrin Institute,” Catanese said in the video interview with Reed for “the Matt Reed Show” on WEFS­TV.

Many Florida Tech students and alumni shared the article and their commentary on social media. Recent aerospace engineering graduate Aishwarya Subramanian shared a link to the article, adding “I want to go back,” with the hashtag #ToInfinityAndBeyond.

Buzzfeed retweeted the link to Florida Today’s story, helping the news spread. The story has since been also covered by the Orlando Sentinel and other sources.

Florida Tech’s history began with the space industry when it was founded in 1958, and Catanese said in his interview that the goal is to continue its connection with the space program, “this time getting younger people interested in going to Mars.”

Aldrin is also a supporter of exploration and civilization on Mars, frequently advocating Occupy Mars in interviews and on social media, like with his “Making a Home on the Red Planet” with National Geographic.

Catanese and FIT administration have not provided further details about The Buzz Aldrin Institute; however, in an interview on Aug. 6, Catanese said Florida Tech was interested in deepening its space sciences program and getting more involved with Mars exploration and research.

Aldrin was a Lunar pilot on the Apollo 11 mission in July 20, 1969, and the second person in history to walk on the moon.

Agreements are currently being finalized and there are no details as to when Aldrin will start teaching at Florida Tech.