Southern River College welcomes wannabe Martian

Josh Richards with Southern River College students.
Josh Richards with Southern River College students.

SOUTHERN River College students were treated to a visit from potential future astronaut and comedian Josh Richards on Friday.

Mr Richards is one of 100 candidates vying for a spot in the Mars One Project, in which four people will be sent on a one-way trip to Mars.

Launching in 2024, the group will be Earth’s first settlers on the planet and tasked with exploring, researching and populating it.

His talk was an interactive one, with a short presentation before taking questions from the audience.

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Mr Richards said it was important to educate the younger generation about exploring outer space.

“As we shift to become a multi-planetary species that mines asteroids and the moon, explores Mars and the moons of Jupiter or Saturn, it will be the next generation that will be the ones living and working regularly in space,” he said.

“The lessons that we learn to survive in space will also be applied to improve life on Earth.”

Southern River College deputy principal Mike Erith said securing Mr Richards visit had been a “coup” and the school was thrilled to hear him.

“It was great to hear his ambitions about space travel and what he sees in the space program,” he said.

“For kids to hear those sorts of stories from people on what drives and inspires them is brilliant.”