BATON ROUGE, LA (BRPROUD) – Shooting for the stars, a young Baton Rouge woman has high hopes of becoming the first person to walk on Mars.
From the red stick, to the red planet an aspiring, young astronaut has big plans for her future and 19-year-old Alyssa Carson is well on her way to achieving that goal.
“When I was around 12 I went and spoke on a NASA panel up in Washington D.C. I was just on the panel to talk about future missions to mars, hopefully in the 2030’s. But, the other panelists were PhD’s, there was an astronaut on the panel and then there was my 12-year-old self,” Carson said.
It all started with a question.
“My dad does remember me coming and asking have people ever been to Mars before, is space real. At that point I didn’t know anything about space and he told me a little bit about the missions to the moon, and how people have gone to the moon and it’s possible one day that we could go to mars. So, that was when I first started getting interested in space,” said Carson.
That has since manifested into life a long passion. Carson has attended numerous space camps, got her pilots license and contributes to space research through Project Possum.
“I just fully blossomed pretty much just being able to see life-size rockets, and build my own model rocket, and play the role of astronaut and learning all this information that I’d been trying so hard to learn. So after I had gone to space camp, I was pretty settled that I wanted some sort of space career,” said Carson.
Now, she’s studying astrobiology in hopes to one day study life on Mars.
“Bacteria in space, growing plants in space, studying planets as a whole. You can even study, you know, is this planet habitable. So you can really adjust your research.”
She’s encouraging other women and girls to follow their dreams, no matter where they may take you.
“It’s always important that we continue to inspire more girls. We’re starting to see more female astronauts but there are tens of thousands of jobs that are involved in the space industry to send that one astronaut to space. So it’s getting more girls across all of those jobs.”
You can follow along with Carson’s journey on her social media sites. Just search “NASA Blueberry” on Instagram, Facebook and twitter.