My roots start in Mexico where I was born. My family moved to the US when I was about 8 years old. Growing up in the US was difficult at first due to the language barrier, but I worked hard and was a fluent English speaker within two years. My mom instilled a strong work ethic in me since childhood and always encouraged me to follow my passions. Space, Math, Astronomy, and Physics have interested me for as long as I can remember and I never lost sight of that growing up.
I graduated high school and enrolled in San Diego City College to study Electrical Engineering despite various setbacks. After three years I transferred to UCLA where I obtained my B.S. in Electrical Engineering. During my time at UCLA I interned at NASA JPL. Eventually, I transitioned to a full-time engineering position and worked on 5 NASA missions including Perseverance and Europa Clipper. Currently, I am pursuing a Master's degree in Electrical Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. I have received an Honorary Doctorate for my humanitarian contributions to society as well as my contributions to technology. On June 4th, 2022, I became the first Mexican-born Woman in Space after being selected by Space for Humanity for a mission to analyze the "Overview Effect".
Throughout my journey in engineering school I was very aware about the lack of women in the field. This was very difficult for me because I did not have many people I could ask for advice regarding several topics such as the implicit biases we face on a daily basis. I’ve been given the opportunity to help guide those girls and women who, like me, are looking for someone with experience in what they are going through. Through honesty about the difficulties and encouragement I hope to be able to help women be better prepared for their experience as a woman in STEM.
As an Electrical Engineer, I've grown to be very passionate about engineering education. I think that a big part of developing successful engineers is enthusiastic instructors. Through my work in science and engineering communication I hope to help bridge some of the existing gaps for students and young professionals.