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Event marks women’s role in science 17 July 2011

ASTRONAUT Nicole Stott planted a tree at the Tynwald National Park on Friday to mark women’s role in science.

Nicole, who has a Master of Science degree in engineering management, was joined at the Arboretum at St John’s by female science students from the Island’s five secondary schools. Nicole Stott tree planting

The wife of Manxman Chris Stott, chairman of space company ManSat, Nicole was one of the six-member crew of space shuttle Discovery’s final mission, this spring, and has been in the Island with four of her fellow astronauts for Manx National Week celebrations and as guests at the annual open-air sitting of Tynwald.

Seeds gathered from an ash tree at Glen Helen were taken into space by Nicole on an earlier mission to the International Space Station on board Discovery in 2009. She brought them back later that year on the space shuttle Atlantis.

Those saplings are now thriving in a private garden.

On Friday, to symbolise women’s burgeoning role in science, Nicole planted a six-foot oak provided by the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture.

Opening proceedings, Eddie Teare MHK, Minister for Education and Children, said:

‘The planting of this tree will remind succeeding generations of the Island’s connection with the space industry. We are indebted to Nicole for her co-operation and support, which is an inspiration to our young people.’

DEFA Minister John Shimmin MHK closed proceedings, thanking Nicole in particular for her continuing support and involvement with the Isle of Man and for setting an example for those at key points in their education.

Photo: Attached is a photo showing Nicole Stott with students from St Ninian’s High School - Kirsty Taggart, Rebecca Johnson, Charlotte Harcourt, Hannah Riordan and Stephanie Watson

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