- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 15, 2014

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) - Astronaut Charles Walker will speak at Purdue University next week about his experiences in the space program.

Walker earned a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical and astronautical engineering from Purdue in 1971. In the mid-1980s he flew aboard three NASA Space Shuttle missions as the first industry-sponsored engineer and researcher. As such, he became the first private astronaut in space.

Walker’s talk, which is free and open to the public, begins at 8 p.m. Oct. 24 in the Class of 1950 Lecture Hall.

Walker also will attend Purdue’s annual Space Day on Oct. 25. He will speak at 9:30 a.m. in Elliott Hall of Music. That event also is free and open to the public.

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