Taking Up the Call
After all of the formalities are taken care of, astronaut classes begin, and each candidate is sworn into civil service. The candidates are moved to Houston to begin training, and their current employment most likely comes to an end. However, this isn’t always the case. Working as an astronaut can help some people improve their employment status, primarily if they previously worked in the military. Another alternative is that a candidate chooses to work in a closely related field to their previous job. Some astronauts have even run for the House of Representatives!
For example, military astronauts can have joint assignments at NASA while maintaining their other positions. That allows them to continue to gain rank while performing military duties and astronaut duties at the same time. Astronauts that are not active duty military when they retire from NASA usually move on to executive positions within the aerospace industry. In other cases, those in academia can choose places or missions relevant to their past experiences. It would allow them to publish scientific journals within the academic world and continue their advancement within NASA’s field.