Helen Sharman OBE is the first British Astronaut. In May 1991, she launched on a Russian Soyuz spacecraft and spent 8 days orbiting the Earth, living and working on the MIR Space Station. A superb speaker, Helen enthuses her audience about Space, STEM and the wonders of science.
Helen Sharman OBE is the first British Astronaut. In May 1991, she launched on a Russian Soyuz spacecraft and spent 8 days orbiting the Earth, living and working on the MIR Space Station. Helen was selected from 13,000 applicants: she didn’t think she stood a chance of being chosen, but she was exactly the right person - calm, practical, friendly and professional.
A superb speaker, Helen enthuses her audience about Space, STEM and the wonders of science. She describes the meticulous training and preparation, learning Russian, the launch and landing, how weightlessness feels, her science experiments, the team spirit, and adjusting to life back on Earth. Awarded the OBE in 1993, Helen is a full-time scientist, a pioneer, a role model for young people (of all ages!) and an inspiration. Helen will celebrate her 30th Anniversary in May 2021!
Helen is invited to speak globally at corporate, public, government, academic and school events. Depending on the brief, she includes a wide range of topics including Living in Space, training to be an astronaut, and teamwork, leadership, communication and motivation. These relate to her career, training and experience, which she combines with her management experience
Her presentation includes slides, many of which she took herself during her time on MIR.
On 15 December 2015, Britain’s second astronaut Major Tim Peake began his mission to the International Space Station (ISS). Helen was invited to join Professor Brian Cox and Dara Ó’Briain to commentate on the live docking of the Soyuz rocket with the ISS on BBC TV’s Stargazing Live. She was invited back again on 18 June 2016 for Tim Peake’s safe return to Earth.
Helen has continued to appear in the media where in 2019, Helen was the UK’s go-to person for TV, radio and media comment on the first Lunar Landings (Neil Armstrong & Buzz Aldrin: Apollo 11: 20 July 1969). Helen was interviewed by the world's media during the SpaceX launch in May 2020 sharing her own insights and experiences.
Helen also speaks to younger audiences too, which includes the 2015 event at the Royal Institution in London, To Infinity and Beyond: the story of the spacesuit, and Helen was also part of the 2019 Christmas Science Shambles event at the Apollo, London, where she shared the stage with Tim Peake, Chris Hadfield, Robin Ince and Professor Brian Cox.
Helen recorded the Audioguide for the acclaimed Cosmonauts exhibition at the Science Museum, London.
Following her own space flight, Helen became a science communicator and corporate speaker. She won numerous prizes for radio and television programmes and for her inspirational talks worldwide on teamwork, STEM, science communication and motivation.
Helen often meets science teachers who were inspired to study science after hearing Helen: her speech changed them, and now they pass on their passion and expertise to the next generations of young scientists and engineers.
Helen believes “We should push forward, not only our individual boundaries, but also the boundaries of what humans believe is possible. People are the biggest limitations in our own lives. There's a huge amount we can do and we should make the best use of our lives for the benefit of the world.”