Korean-American Jonny Kim is now ready to explore space.
After more than two years of training at NASA, Kim and ten others have graduated the agency's program to be eligible for missions to the International Space Station as well as potential missions to the moon and Mars.
"What I hope to be able to contribute to, leave behind is the foundation for future explorers to come to the moon as a staging area for further research, for further resource gathering, to be able launch and explore even further."
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Kim is a U.S. Navy Lieutenant and a resident physician in emergency medicine.
He was also a Navy SEAL who completed more than 100 combat operations while earning a Silver Star and Bronze Star with Combat V.
During the graduation ceremony at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston last Friday, Kim shared some advice for those who want to follow in his footsteps.
"Space exploration is a human endeavor. We need talented good human beings to make this happen. So if you're watching this, and if you have a knack for the outdoors and for the challenges of the unknown and working together in a small team, then you might have a spot here."
According to NASA, it selected Kim and the other astronauts from an initial pool of more than 18-thousand candidates.
During their training, the latest crop of astronauts trained on systems used in space stations, learned how to use complex robotics and simulated spacewalking.
Kan Hyeong-woo, Arirang News.