Today's trip into the Advertiser's archives sees us go back 10 years to the exciting prospect of a trip to the Johnson Space Center in Texas for a pupil at Lomond School in Helensburgh.

Here's how we reported on Matthew Brown's sense of anticipation in our edition of September 11, 2008...

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A BUDDING astronaut has blasted off on a mission to NASA.

Lomond School pupil Matthew Brown is one of 26 Scots youngsters set to touch down at the Johnson Space Centre in Texas.

And the 16-year-old admitted he would love to follow in the footsteps of spaceman Neil Armstrong after being inspired by his mum and dad.

Matthew, from Helensburgh, said: “My dad’s a doctor and mum’s a nurse so they’ve been hugely influential. They are really excited for me and support me 100 per cent.

“NASA combines two of the things I love the most – flying and medicine. So it’s an honour to be able to go over and meet the astronauts and scientists who work there.”

Matthew was picked from 3,000 youngsters involved in the Careers Scotland Space School to travel to the Houston centre.

The Helensburgh teenager will get the chance to meet astronauts, engineers and scientists and is hoping to become a permanent member of the space team in the future.

Matthew said: “I can’t wait to meet the astronauts to see what they do. I would love to work at NASA one day and can see myself there in the future.

“To land a job there would be a dream come true and I think I’ll be able to do it one day.

“But it’s a really hard thing to break into as Britain doesn’t even fund space exploration.

“They think it’s a waste of money – but that’s rubbish.

“I’m really looking forward to seeing – and hopefully having a shot of – the shuttle simulator.

“It simulates what it’s like when a spaceship is landing.”

During the group’s 10-day tour, sixth-year pupils from schools across Scotland will visit the historic mission control that was used during the Apollo space flights.

They will also work with astronauts and scientists in a mixture of lectures, workshops, group tasks and assignments.

Alex Blackwood, of Skills Development Scotland, said: “It’s a trip of a lifetime for these young students and we hope that it will inspire and motivate them to consider careers in science, engineering and technology.

“Now in its seventh year, the space school has shown many young people that careers in this field can be within their reach.

“We recognise that science, engineering and technology are key to the success of Scotland’s economy which is why, through programmes like this, we will continue to encourage young people to study these subjects and choose them as careers.”