The first person to set foot on Mars is likely to be a woman. Jim Bridenstine, NASA administrator, said on the radio show "Science Friday" that the first person to walk on the red planet, as well as the next person to land on the moon, will be a woman. While Bridenstine did not identify a specific person, he said that women are at the forefront of the US space agency’s upcoming plans. Asked if a woman will go to the Moon for the first time, Bridenstine said “The answer is absolutely. In fact, it is likely to be a woman, the first next person on the Moon.”
“It is also true that the first person on Mars is likely to be a woman,” Bridenstine said during a recent interview on the science and technology radio talk show “Science Friday.” NASA recently announced that it will 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
“We have the first all-female spacewalk happening this month at the end of March, which is of course, National Women’s Month. So, NASA is committed to making sure that we have a broad and diverse set of talent. And we are looking forward to the first woman on the Moon,” he said.
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.
The spacewalk will last about seven hours, according to the NASA website.
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 — more than 6,100. The most recent class of flight directors was also 50% women, NASA said.
NASA has come a long way since 1978 when the first six women joined NASA’s astronaut corps. Today, women comprise 34% of active NASA astronauts, according to the agency.