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A record number of people applied to be a NASA astronaut. Over 18,300 people applied for 14 jobs. This is a record. NASA will now spend 18 months choosing the best people. It will announce the successful applicants in the middle of 2017. NASA said: "It's [great] to know so many people recognize what a great opportunity this is to be part of NASA's exciting mission. I look forward to meeting the men and women talented enough to rise to the top."
Many people want to work on the space program. NASA said: "So many Americans from diverse backgrounds want to personally contribute to…our journey to Mars." The top applicants will have an interview and then get two years of training. They will learn things such as spacewalking, teamwork and operating spacecraft. They will also learn Russian. They could go to the International Space Station or work for space tourism companies, such as SpaceX.
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