(Feb. 5, 2014) -- Meet Ricco Aceves. He is one of only 150 students from 70 universities in the country who has been accepted into the prestigious NASA Pathways Intern Employment Program.
Over the next two fall and summer semesters, he will move to Houston to work alongside professional engineers at the Johnson Space Center. The NASA Pathways internship gives undergraduates the opportunity to explore federal careers while still in school with the possibility of being hired upon graduation.
"NASA is home to many of the best engineers and scientists and my goal is to be part of that group," says Aceves. "NASA's vision states, 'To reach for new heights and reveal the unknown...,' which is the same vision that I have for myself. To be part of a team that benefits humankind was a dream -- now it's becoming a reality."
This isn't Aceves' first encounter with NASA. As a senior in high school, he was accepted into NASA's Career Exploration Program and worked with a team to engineer and program a speech-dependent robotic arm that is now utilized as a prototype tool for astronauts.
A junior in electrical engineering, Aceves is vice president of the UTSA chapter of MAES, a national organization for the development of Latinos in science and engineering. Through MAES, Aceves participates in many outreach programs in area high schools.
Aceves is proud to represent UTSA, not only at NASA but also when he's speaking to students in the community about the exciting careers that a degree in engineering, math or science affords.
"The atmosphere at UTSA is remarkable. I feel as though I belong here and it's a home away from home," he said. "What I really like about being at UTSA is that I can be a part of the growth that is taking place at this institution. We're on our way to become a top tier university, and I'm glad that I can help move us in that direction."
Aceves credits his mentor, Manuel Maldonado, program manager for the UTSA Office of P-20 Initiatives, as the person who inspired him the most.
"Ricco has been one of the best student leaders that we have had within our office," said Maldonado. "I believe that he exemplifies the Top Scholar student that the university is attracting and will continue to attract in the future. He is a true ambassador of UTSA, and it has been a pleasure watching him grow as a student leader, a researcher and as a young man."
Do you know someone at UTSA who is achieving great things? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we might consider your submission for an upcoming installment of Meet a Roadrunner.
The annual Center for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CITE) 100K Venture Competition and Exposition will be held on the Main Campus on Dec. 1. Twenty-eight teams from across the university will exhibit their project; six teams will compete for a prize pool of more than $100,000 in funding to launch their new venture / company. More than 650 students have participated in launching new technology ventures.
Biotechnology, Sciences and Engineering (BSE 2.102), Main Campus
This concert features 50 community children performing music in the UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert. The children, led by UTSA music students studying to be music teachers, will join together in playing the Theme from Batman at their concert. The Batman of San Antonio, a local celebrity figure, will make an appearance at the concert. This event is free.
Buena Vista Theatre, Downtown Campus
Graduate student uses storytelling to highlight important issues facing children
As touch screens and e-books demand more and more attention from both casual readers and scholars, many people say the handwriting is on the wall for the printed page.
At UTSA, the handwriting is on the wall for a library that doesn't have any printed books.
Since March 2010, the bookless library in the Applied Engineering and Technology Building has given UTSA students an innovative way to read, research and work with each other to solve problems.
With ultra-modern furniture and a décor featuring desktop computers, scanners and LCD screens, the AET Library is designed to engage students in an online format. But it also offers group study niches and study rooms with whiteboards and glass walls on which students can write. The space encourages teamwork, communications and problem solving for the next generation of scientists and professional engineers.
Did you know? The UTSA AET Library is the nation's first completely bookless library on a college or university campus. It served as a model for Bexar County's first-in-the-nation public bookless library system and one of its branches, the Dr. Ricardo Romo BiblioTech.
The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.
To be a premier public research university, providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.
We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.