Skip to main content

Scott Kelly, who spent a year in space, launches new audio course

Scott Kelly, shown here in the cupola of the International Space Station, completed a yearlong mission to the International Space Station in March 2016
Scott Kelly, shown here in the cupola of the International Space Station, completed a yearlong mission to the International Space Station in March 2016 (Image credit: NASA )

Scott Kelly, the NASA astronaut who spent nearly a year in orbit in 2015-16, has a new audio course available about leading and achieving in space — and on the ground.

The former International Space Station commander recently launched "Go For Launch: How to Dream, Lead and Achieve" on Knowable, an app that provides podcast-style audio courses for learning skills and absorbing interesting ideas.

"In this candid and entertaining audiocourse, Captain Kelly teaches life lessons inspired by his tumultuous childhood, his career as a Navy test pilot, and his year hurtling around the globe," Knowable said in a fact sheet about the course. "Along the way, listeners will learn what it means to dream, lead, and achieve in ways they never thought possible."

Related: 'Infinite Wonder': Photos from Scott Kelly's Year in Space mission 

Some of the topics that will be addressed in the course include Kelly's leadership philosophy, the power of learning from failure combined with endurance, the importance of science, and insights from Kelly's time in isolation — the latter of which will help audiences during quarantines imposed by the coronavirus pandemic, Knowable said.

"There's an idea out there that astronauts are always perfect; 'Failure is not an option', right?" Kelly says in the course, riffing off a well-known expression among space geeks from the 1995 Hollywood movie "Apollo 13" that covered a real-life space disaster and recovery during the NASA moon-landing program.

"That's why I want to take you," Kelly continued, "through some of my life experiences to show you how that [perfection] is just not true. I believe everyday regular, human failure, if we handle it right, can be one of our greatest opportunities to learn, grow and succeed."

Kelly's course coincidentally released around the same time that his astronaut-brother Mark Kelly, a Democrat, was elected to his first term in the Senate during the U.S. presidential election in early November.

Mark Kelly is the fourth NASA astronaut to be elected to Congress after Mercury/shuttle astronaut John Glenn, Apollo 13's John "Jack" Swigert (who died of cancer before he could take office) and Apollo 17's Harrison "Jack" Schmitt. Also, two Congresspeople (Senator Jake Garn, R-UT, and Representative Bill Nelson, D-FL) flew on the space shuttle as congressional observers in the 1980s, when NASA temporarily had opportunities for citizen passengers.

Follow Elizabeth Howell on Twitter @howellspace. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook.  

Join our Space Forums to keep talking space on the latest missions, night sky and more! And if you have a news tip, correction or comment, let us know at:

Elizabeth Howell
Elizabeth Howell is a contributing writer for who is one of the few Canadian journalists to report regularly on space exploration. She is pursuing a Ph.D. part-time in aerospace sciences (University of North Dakota) after completing an M.Sc. (space studies) at the same institution. She also holds a bachelor of journalism degree from Carleton University. Besides writing, Elizabeth teaches communications at the university and community college level. To see her latest projects, follow Elizabeth on Twitter at @HowellSpace.