Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Astronaut Jose Hernandez lands at Memorial High School to promote STEM careers

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Astronaut Jose Hernandez discusses STEM careers with students at Memorial High School in Edgewood ISD

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(Jan. 19, 2012) -- Students at Memorial High School in the Edgewood ISD were flying high Jan. 18 when they met with Jose Hernandez and learned about the career choices that landed him a seat on a mission to the International Space Station. During the visit, made possible by a partnership between Edgewood ISD and the UTSA Academy for Teacher Excellence, Hernandez encouraged the students to work hard in school and consider science, technology, engineering, mathematics and related careers.

Born Aug. 7, 1962, Hernandez is one of four children of a migrant farming family from Mexico. He learned to speak English at age 12, and while in high school, he participated in Upward Bound, a federal college preparedness program. While majoring in electrical engineering at the University of the Pacific, he participated in the Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement (MESA) program, an academic program that supports students from educationally disadvantaged backgrounds while they pursue their four-year degrees. He holds a master's degree in electrical and computer engineering from UC Santa Barbara.

In 2001, Hernandez joined Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, as an engineer in the Materials and Processes branch before NASA selected him in 2004 for Astronaut Candidate Training. By February 2006, he completed NASA astronaut training, and in fall 2009 was a crewmember of the STS-128 Discovery, NASA's 128th shuttle mission and its 30th mission to the International Space Station.

Hernandez visited with students from Edgewood's Memorial High School and Toltech T-STEM Academy. The program, a school-within-a-school project, encourages high school students to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and related fields by offering additional STEM instruction and giving them the opportunity to earn college credits before graduating from high school.

The UTSA Academy for Teacher Excellence, which supports the FIPSE-iCLASS program at Memorial High School and its Toltech T-STEM Academy, was established as a hub for school districts, community colleges and UTSA to collaboratively research, design, implement and evaluate educational programs that address emerging, local and statewide educational issues associated with a growing diverse student population.

The academy is a critical element of the UTSA College of Education and Human Development teacher education programs and has helped UTSA achieve national recognition as a leader in preparing teachers to teach in culturally diverse settings.

 

 

Did You Know?

Football standouts make Roadrunner history

For Ashaad Mabry and Triston Wade, football is not just a passing fancy. Both players were part of the UTSA football program almost from the beginning. When UTSA opens the 2015 season Thursday at Arizona, it will be the first time the Roadrunners take the field without them. But Mabry and Wade will still be playing football; their uniforms will just be a different color.

Mabry, a defensive tackle from San Antonio's MacArthur High School, was an honorable mention All-Conference USA selection his final two seasons as a Roadrunner and second among the team's defensive linemen with 49 tackles last year. Wade, a defensive back from Tyler, was the most decorated player in school history. He was a semifinalist for the 2014 Jim Thorpe Award – for the nation's top defensive back – a three-time all-conference honoree and two-year team captain who set a school record of 293 tackles in his career. Both men had outstanding college careers that allowed them to make UTSA history.

Did you know? Mabry and Wade both agreed to terms as undrafted free agents with the New Orleans Saints and Seattle Seahawks, respectively, becoming the first UTSA players to move to the professional ranks.

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