News Brief: NASA says Alaskan astronaut candidate Robb Kulin is leaving his training program at the end of this month, one year after his selection for the Class of 2017. Reports from the Houston Chronicle and Ars Technica say it’s the first time in 50 years that an astronaut candidate has left the program before qualifying for spaceflight. NASA characterizes the departure of Kulin, who was born in 1983, as a resignation and a retirement. Before joining the astronaut program, Kulin worked as an ice driller in Antarctica, a commercial fisherman in Alaska and an engineer at SpaceX. NASA says Kulin resigned for personal reasons, and his place in the 12-member Class of 2017 will not be filled.