The astronauts were announced on Twitter by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the ruler of Dubai who is also the country’s prime minister and vice president. She was selected from 4,000 candidates in the UAE, and will undergo training at NASA‘s Johnson Space Center in Houston. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the university of UAE and has since been a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
If al-Matroushi is selected for a mission in the future, she would become the first Arab woman in space.
The UAE have reported plans to build a human colony on Mars by 2117, and hope to put an unmanned spacecraft on the moon within the next three years.