Who Will Be the First Woman to Walk on the Moon?
Who will be the first woman to walk on the moon? It’s time to have your say, and Bodog have odds on that very lunar market.
On July 21, 1969, the world turned their attention to American astronaut Neil Armstrong as he took the first human steps on the moon through the Apollo program. There would be five more Apollo missions after Armstrong, continuing on until 1972, when astronauts Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt completed the final lunar mission. Humans have not returned since.
Fast forward 54 years later, and NASA is looking to return to the moon through their new lunar program called Artemis. 2024 is the benchmark year for a moon landing, as they already completed Artemis 1 of 3 with the launch of a Space Launch System at the Kennedy Space Center in November 2022. This time the crew will look a little different from Apollo, as there will be female astronauts taking part in the program. Half of the astronauts selected to take part in the initial training for Artemis are women.
This is the next step for women in space. In 2019, we witnessed the first all-women spacewalk, which included astronauts Christina Koch and Jessica Meir. The spacewalk was unplanned as the two had to make repairs to a failed battery charge/discharge unit. Koch and Meir are among the top five picks in our sportsbook to become the first woman to walk on the moon. Odds are open for betting at press time.
Jessica Meir +300
Jessica Meir knew she wanted to be an astronaut since she was a child, but she took an unorthodox path to reach her goal. Her education started with a Bachelor of Arts in Biology at Brown University, and then she completed a Master of Science in Space Studies at the International Space University. Meir completed her Doctorate at Scripps Institution of Oceanography in Marine Biology, where she studied the physiology of animals in extreme environments. As a scuba diver, she had the opportunity to explore otherworldly environments in a weightless capacity.
Meir started her career at the Lockheed Martin’s Human Research Facility studying human physiology on the space shuttle. At the age of 36, she was selected to be part of NASA’s astronaut class of 2013, which took two years to complete. Meir has spent a total of 205 days in space on the International Space Station—an orbiting laboratory—and participated in the first all-female space walk in October 2019. As far as the odds on the first woman to walk on the moon go, Meir is rightly at the top of the pile.
Jessica Watkins +300
Watkins contributed a strong understanding of geology to the team, thanks to her Bachelor of Science in Geological and Environmental Sciences at Stanford University. While at Stanford, she played rugby—something that she credits to helping foster a high level of teamwork, which is critical for an astronaut. Watkins continued to pursue her passion for rocks by completing a Doctorate in Geology at the University of California. She soon became an intern at NASA’s Ames Research Center and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and was part of NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory rover.
Planets have always fascinated Watkins, and Mars in particular has been a subject of curiosity for her, leading her to conduct research on the mechanics of landslides on the planet. On October 14, 2022, she finished her work as a Mission Specialist on NASA’s SpaceX Crew-4 mission to the International Space Station.
Christina Koch +700
Koch was part of the same eight-person 2013 astronaut class as Meir, and she completed her astronaut training in 2015. Before that, she was in school at North Carolina State University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering, a Bachelor of Science in Physics and a Masters’ of Science in Electrical Engineering. In 2020, the school awarded her an honourary PhD.
And like Meir, Koch lived on board the International Space Station, but in Koch’s case, it was for 328 days, starting on March 14, 2019 and lasting to February 2020. This experienced surpassed the previous record for the longest single space flight for a woman. She was a Flight Engineer for Expedition 59, 60 and 61. During her time at the space station, she took part in six space walks and conducted research that led to various improvements, including work on 3D biological printers that focus on printing tissue needed to thrive in microgravity.
Stephanie Wilson +700
The most seasoned astronaut on this list is Stephanie Wilson from Massachusetts. From a young age, Wilson was fascinated by space and engineering. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Science at Harvard in 1988 and went on to complete her Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering—the perfect combination of her two favourite topics. Wilson began her career at NASA working on launch vehicles and robotic spacecrafts before being selected in 1996 to become an astronaut, which required two years of training.
Wilson became a Mission Specialialist for STS-121 in 2006—the first of three flights that she’d take into space. In total, she has spent 42 days in space between 2006 and 2010. Between time in orbit, she has also worked as the Operations Products Lead and Space Station Integration Branch Chief for NASA.
Anne McClain +900
Born in Spokane, Washington, Anne McClain was selected for the same 2013 NASA astronaut class as Meir and Koch. She came with a military background, earning a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering from the US Military Academy at West Point. She then earned a Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Bath in England and a Master of Science in International Relations from the University of Bristol in England.
Reaching the rank of Lieutenant Colonel, McClain worked in the US military’s aviation sector where she tallied over 2,000 hours of flying in 20 different aircrafts. She was a Flight Engineer and US Orbital Segment Lead at the International Space Station for Expedition 58 and 59. She was the lead spacewalker for two spacewalks and has spent a total of 204 days in space.