First Person on Mars is ‘Likely to be a Woman’

Gabriella Parrella


According to the head of NASA, Jim Bridenstine, a woman is “likely to be” the first person on Mars. He revealed this on “Science Friday,” a science and technology radio show. While there is not one specific woman chosen, women are at the forefront of NASA’s plans. NASA will also have its first all-female spacewalk at the end of the month, when astronauts Anne McClain and Christina Koch will get to float around in space. According to NASA, the spacewalk will last about seven hours. Both McClain and Koch were part of the 2013 astronaut class, half of which were women. They came from the second largest applicant pool NASA ever has received — over 6,100. The most recent class of flight directors was also 50% women, NASA said.

Compared to the six women who joined NASA in 1978, NASA has come a long way. Bridenstine commented, “NASA is committed to making sure we have a broad and diverse set of talent and we’re looking forward to the first woman on the moon.” This is amazing to hear as far as gender equality, and many have pointed out that this news coincidentally came out during International Women’s Day.

Many women have helped bring men to the moon, such as Margaret Hamilton, but were only recognized by the president nearly 50 years later. In fact, no American woman has been on the moon, as all twelve astronauts have been men.

Let men have the moon, but women will conquer Mars. Happy National Women’s Month and thank you to all of the amazing women working at NASA bringing the U.S. closer to exploring Mars!