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Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor

Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor (Source: NASA (International Space Station Imagery))

Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor was the first Malaysian to travel to space. He was launched on the Soyuz TMA-11 rocket and spent ten days in October, 2007 aboard the International Space Station. He also made the headlines at the time for he was the first Muslim astronaut in Space during Ramzan. This led to studies being made on the best way to fast in space as well as on how astronauts could optimally orient themselves towards Mecca.

What connects him to our corner of the world is the fact that he pursued his degree in medicine at the Kasturba Medical College in Manipal, Karnataka. He spent eight years at Manipal and graduated in 1997 with an MBBS degree.