It was 47 years ago today when Neil Armstrong took 'one small step for (a) man and one giant leap for mankind.'

Buzz Aldrin followed suit shortly thereafter.

Aldrin, the second man to set foot on the lunar surface also helped jumpstart the Department of Space Studies at the University of North Dakota.

Aldrin spoke to a crowd at the Bismarck Event Center about that and more just a year ago.

He told the crowd he was "very proud" of his work with the UND Space studies program according to the Grand Forks Herald.

He was invited in the early 80s to the University to help start a Space Studies Program. Aldrin appointed David Webb, a member of the Presidential Commission of Space, to design the program and become the program's first Chair.

It was 30 years ago when Dr. Webb initiated the founding department for the program and in 1987 the program had its first round of students.

Since no students were in the program until 1987, the 30 year anniversary will technically be in 2017.

We've come a long way since then. NASA of course has rovers on Mars, satellites zipping past Pluto, and most recently has satellites lurking around Jupiter.

As for the UND space program, they are set to launch North Dakota's first ever spacecraft into space in December.

[University of North Dakota Aerospace]