Why this man's on a mission to Mars, and planning to never return...

He's been a Stand-Up Comedian, Explosives Engineer and Soldier. Now, in a bid to follow his childhood dream of becoming an astronaut, Josh Richards has signed up to an opportunity that has the capacity to change human life, as we know it!

Selected from over 200,000 initial applicants, Josh is now one of 100 worldwide astronaut candidates short-listed to leave Earth forever and become the first to colonise Mars in 2025!

At The National Young Leaders Day in March this year, one student asked Josh if he is scared – his response might surprise you:

For Josh, signing up for the Mars One Project has been one of the biggest decisions of his life and that is saying something given his somewhat extraordinary journey to date. More on that in this recent article by news.com.au.

The project itself has of course been met with criticism and some might say rightly so; sending humans to inhabit Mars has never been done before! Sounds crazy right? Whether or not you agree, there is no doubt it takes guts to take a risk such as this and Josh is taking it all in his stride.

While he eagerly awaits the final selection process to take place in 2016, Josh is continuing to exercise his passion for science by educating and getting people excited about space. He currently spends his time working as a school laboratory manager five days a week and takes up various speaking engagements. He is also touring around the country with UWA Motorsports to talk about a Mars lander payload they co-designed for National Science Week this August.

Primary and secondary students who attended The National Young Leaders Day earlier this year had the priviledge of hearing his story. Here are some of the key leadership insights he shared:

1.“You may think you know what it is you want to do now but this will change. It is ok for things to take a new direction, be open to that.”

2.“Do the stuff you really care about. Don’t forget what it is you wanted to do when you were young. It will stay with you.”

3.“If you see an opportunity, have the courage to jump out at it."

4.“Don’t lose sight of the bigger vision or purpose behind what it is you are doing.”

5.“Be open to failure. I am here now because of the mistakes I have made and I wouldn’t change a thing.”

6.“You must take criticism on board in order to move forward.”

For more on Josh Richards, visit his website. For more on Mars One, click here.


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