First Spider in Space!

By Tom

As an admission counselor and an alum – and as a bit of an astronomy geek – I just have to give a shout-out to Leland Melvin, who blasted off in the space shuttle Atlantis yesterday to become the first University of Richmond graduate in space! He’s serving as a mission specialist on the flight, which is set to dock with the International Space Station tomorrow.

The university had a “launch party” yesterday afternoon to celebrate the occasion: the launch was shown live on the big-screen in the Commons, with space-themed snacks provided. I unfortunately wasn’t able to make it, but I watched the launch with my colleagues here in the office (a nice, brief break from reading files). It was quite an exciting occasion!

To find out more about our very own astronaut, visit NASA’s site at and take a look at his biography.

Congratulations, Leland!! We’re proud of you!


  1. Nancy
    Posted February 26, 2008 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

    Will Leland be coming to Richmond for a talk anytime soon?

  2. Tom
    Posted March 14, 2008 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

    Yes, he will! He will be on the UR campus sometime in the month of April. We don’t have an exact date yet, but I will try to comment when I find out.

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