Scholar of the Week

Aurora Castaneda      
UT Austin

Aurora is a 2012 HENAAC-Najera Consulting Group scholarship recipient.

Aurora Castaneda is in her sophomore year at the University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin) where she is pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering. Aurora graduated from Southwest High School in San Antonio, Texas as class valedictorian with a 4.74 grade point average, ranked one in a class of six hundred and fifty four.

While a high school student, Aurora showed great leadership ability and potential. Besides her academic achievement, she was also civically engaged in volunteer and peer tutoring activities. She was a peer tutor for the Southwest Independent School District and a volunteer program assistant for the ACE After School Program. Through these activities she helped students understand basic concepts of math through engaging them in active learning techniques and coordinating hands-on activities.

As a university student, Aurora continues her involvement with the UT Austin community. She is currently involved as a mentor in the Women in Engineering Program (WEP). This program provides support for and encourages the success of women in the Cockrell School of Engineering. WEP requires that students take an additional leadership class in order to participate. Even through her heavy engineering coursework, Aurora still makes a commitment of helping others and putting her leadership skills to use.

Aurora is a member of the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers and the Pi Sigma Pi Minority Academic Society where she serves as a chapter officer.

Aurora chose the field of civil engineering because she feels civil engineers make a difference in the lives of billions and she wants to be a part of making that difference. Upon completion of her degree, she hopes to use her newly gained knowledge and skills to give back to her community.

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