Space travel is undoubtedly the key to our future. Scientific literacy is embarrassingly low among many first world nations, and mankind needs a scientific revolution to get the public interested once again. That event will be when we first walk on Mars. Yet, imagine if one of the scientists digs into the Martian soil and discovers microbial life. This discovery would usher forth a scientific gold rush to Mars, and begin a technological boom the likes of which has never been seen. This is why I am pursuing a PhD in astrobiology; so I may be that scientist. I want to be the one to capture the minds of a generation, and inspire all to pursue scientific excellence. To me, space goes beyond mere interest. It is a way of life. Winning this contest would be an invaluable asset in acquiring research grants, starting a cascade of events leading to my success. Going to space would not only be a dream come true, it would be an important step in my journey to change the world.