Mars Might Beat Earth to Leadership Parity

Women AstronautsBut that’s only because half of NASA’s latest astronaut class is female, and they’re training for a mission that could see them visit Earth’s nearest neighbor in 15 years.Jessica Meir, Anne McClain, Christina Hammock Koch, and Nicole Aunapu Mann beat out over 6,100 other applicants for their spots in the eight-person astronaut class of 2013. (NASA only picks a new astronaut class once every four or five years.) According to NASA officials, they didn’t intentionally set out to select a gender-equal class: “We never determine how many people of each gender we’re going to take,” said Janet Kavandi, Deputy Director of NASA’s Glenn Research Center, “but these were the most qualified people of the ones that we interviewed.“While it’s not a guarantee that these four women will be picked for the Mars trip (that crew will be determined years down the line), they’re understandably psyched about the possibility of going to Mars, because, hello, it would be one of the greatest feats humankind has ever achieved. To read more about the astronauts and their training for the Mars mission, we highly recommend you head on over to Glamour.