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The stars are aligned for UNB alumnus vying to become Canada s next astronaut: Alex Delorey

Author: Young Alumni

Posted on Feb 9, 2017

Category: Inspiring Stories , Engineering , UNB Fredericton , Young Alumni

Childhood dreams of space travel may very well become a reality for UNB young alumnus, Alex Delorey (BScE’07), who has earned his spot as one of 72 candidates still in the running to become the next Canadian astronaut.

Last summer, 3,372 applications were submitted to the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) for two astronaut positions that will be filled this year. The latest shortlist was announced last week, leaving Delorey, a Riverview New Brunswick native, excited and eager for what’s to come.

Alex Delorey, 33, Milton, ON 

Now living in Milton, ON, Delorey dedicated his spare time over the summer to improving his application by learning to fly, scuba dive, sky dive and obtain a radio operator permit. Combined with his UNB degree in mechanical engineering and extensive work experience as program manager at SNC Lavalin, he is confident in his abilities.

There has yet to be a New Brunswick born astronaut to join the agency and Delorey certainly has the province proud as he works to earn a position.

“I remember playing astronaut since I was young and it probably helped drive me into mechanical engineering,” says Delorey. “It was such a dream that I hadn’t fully considered it until I saw that they were posting for two new astronauts.”

The CSA evaluates applicants based on a wide range of physical skill, mental ability and professional experience, such as technical project management, international cooperative experience, and rescue training, says Delorey. Since the application deadline last August candidates have been put through a series of evaluations and tests, which will continue until the final two are selected.

It has been a busy year for Delorey balancing a full-time job, where he manages the refurbishment of six nuclear reactors, while working to train his mind and body for any upcoming physical testing. He credits much of his perseverance and success to his experiences at UNB in the faculty of engineering.

“Having worked across Canada it is good to see that UNB has a reputation of producing well-educated, hardworking engineers.”

Delorey and his wife, Leina, also welcomed their first child into the world this past December. Both his wife and son have been true inspirations throughout this journey.

"My newborn will probably know more about Mars by the time he is one, than most babies."

“I’m looking forward to telling him all about the hard work and dedication we put into this dream when he’s older and help him pursue his."

The ‘unknown’ is what fascinates Delorey about space travel and he is excited about the possibility to play a role in scientific history. As he launches one step closer to becoming Canada’s next astronaut, Delorey is inspiring many to work hard and dream big.