WASHINGTON D.C. -- A Washington state native was selected on Wednesday by NASA to join the 2017 Astronaut Candidate Class.

29-year-old Kayla Barron is one of 12 astronaut candidates chosen from more than 18,300 applicants according to NASA.

Born in Pocatello, Idaho, Barron said she considers Richland, Wash., to be her hometown. She graduated from Richland High School in 2006 and went on to graduate from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, with a Bachelor’s degree in systems engineering. A Gates Cambridge Scholar, Barron also earned a Master’s degree in nuclear engineering from the University of Cambridge.

As a submarine warfare officer, Barron was a member of the first class of women commissioned into the submarine community. Barron was serving as the Flag Aide to the Superintendent of the U.S. Naval Academy at the time of her NASA selection.

Barron will report for duty in August for two years of training as an Astronaut Candidate. NASA said upon completion, she will be assigned technical duties in the Astronaut Office while awaiting a flight assignment.

More information on Barron and the NASA program can be found here.