(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 email@example.com so we might consider your submission for an upcoming installment of Meet a Roadrunner.
The UTSA community welcomes students to their on-campus home! Laurel Village, Chaparral Village and Alvarez Hall are home for 2,300 students during the academic year, and Move-In event kicks off the start of Roadrunner Days.
Laurel Village, Chaparral Village, Alvarez Hall, Main Campus
The College of Engineering hosts this seminar featuring Jeff Adams, Southwest Zone Quality Manager, Siemens Building Technologies Division. The event is free and open to the public.
Engineering Building (EB 3.04.30), Main Campus
This is a terrific opportunity for incoming transfer students to network with staff that serve our veteran, non-traditional, and transferring students, as well as meet transfer peer mentors who can help answer questions about UTSA.
Main Building ground floor lobby, Main Campus
After a day full of moving and getting settled into their new UTSA home, students and their families can have some refreshments and snacks at the Welcome Back Reception. The event tops off with the premiere performance of the Spirit of San Antonio, UTSA's Marching Band.
University Center Paseo, Main Campus
Can you survive the library wilderness? As a part of Roadrunner Days, UTSA Libraries is hosting a mobile adventure for you to play and find out more about the library!
John Peace Library, 2nd floor, Main Campus
Come meet your UTSA Volleyball Team as they gear up for the 2017 season! The game begins at 5 p.m. then the team will hold an autograph and photo session after the game.
Convocation Center, Main Campus
This engaging discussion pulls back the covers on hooking up, clarifying when it’s actually sexual violence and how bystanders can protect potential victims from predators.
University Center, Retama Auditorium (UC 2.02.02), Main Campus
Late Night at the Rec is an awesome UTSA tradition that transforms a standard information session into an exciting night of fun. At this annual event, you’ll be able to learn about our facilities, recreation programs, and wellness services offered at Main and Downtown Campuses.
Recreation and Wellness Center, Main Campus
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.
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