First Mexican woman in space gets a Barbie doll
Kat Echazarreta wants more Mexicans to strive for and achieve their dreams.
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Mattel, as part of its Role Models collection — introduced in 2015 to honor inspiring women — is adding Mexican-American astronaut Katya Echazarreta to its collection in 2023 for Women's History Month
Echazarreta wrote on her Facebook account:
At 7 years old when I used to pretend my Barbie was an Astronaut traveling through the galaxy I could never have imagined I would one day have my very own Barbie. It is such an honor to be a part of the Barbie Role Models campaign.
An inspiration for girls
Echazarreta's Barbie, who has her hair color and cut, wears a navy blue space suit, which highlights a patch that bearing her name and Space for Humanity, the organization that selected the Mexican from among 7,000 applicants for a trip to space.
In 2022, the Guadalajara-born astronaut traveled into space on a Blue Origin flight as part of the Shepard NS-21 mission. The tributes poured in for Echazaretta not long after her historic flight, and continue to this day.
Because of her dual nationality, Echazarreta also became the youngest American to go to space.
“During this campaign they wanted to honor impactful women around the world and I get the beautiful opportunity to represent Latin America. This one of a kind Barbie is here to represent all little brown girls who dream of the stars!” added Echazarreta, who is currently leading a campaign modify the Mexican Constitution to promote the aerospace industry in the country and promote more spaces for girls and women in science.
In an interview, the 27-year-old said that the new Barbie model is not a generic astronaut but one that is inspired by a real woman who had experiences and continues to work to create opportunities for other Mexican boys and girls.
Echazarreta wants to return to space, but this time she wants to do it alongside her country. Mexico does have a space program, but not the infrastructure to launch its own missions. It also prohibits any rocket launching on its soil.
“I am currently working on a constitutional reform that will create the necessary legislative basis to be able to create an aerospace sector, not only for the government, because it can make the decision whether to continue with this or not, but also open the doors for the private industry, so that companies like SpaceX can grow in our country," said Echazarreta.
Can I buy? And where and when?
Not every Barbie in the Role Models line go on sale, so it is not yet confirmed if Echazarreta's Barbie will actually go on sale.
To date, the Role Models collection has honored around 50 women who have excelled in different areas, including some Latinas, such as the Mexican businesswoman Adriana Azuara, singer Celia Cruz, fashion designer Lan Yu, and writer Julia Álvarez.
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