Scholar of the Week

Juan Abraham Gomez      
University of Southern California

Juan Abraham Gomez was awarded the 2016 HENAAC Scholarship sponsored by Henry W Brady in the amount of $1,000. Currently a senior at the University of Southern California Viterbi School of Engineering (USC), Juan is pursuing a degree in electrical engineering. A highly focused and goal-oriented student, Abraham actively seeks out opportunities where he can gain leadership skills and apply his knowledge of electrical engineering.

A child of immigrant parents, Abraham is the first in his family born in the U.S. which has given him a unique perspective in inclusion and exclusion. Inclusion in that he was raised with a strong sense of his Mexican-American heritage and exclusion in that he is the only member of his family born and raised in the U.S. “More than anything, being Hispanic is taking advantage of the position my family has earned for me going down a path that I am proudest of. Being Hispanic for me means the constant redefining of perceptions and stereotypes. It means questioning the limitations that cultural generalizations put on me, unlocking the potential any human being has regardless of race, believing that everything is possible, that it can be done.”

As a member of the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE), Abraham realized the importance the organization played in his academic success. SHPE was a supportive and encouraging community for him to connect with likeminded individuals living the same academic experiences. Through his involvement and ability to network with professors and CEOs of various companies, he is now able to pass on what he has learned to the next generation of high school students and incoming freshmen. His ability to grasp the importance of leadership in the Hispanic community to increase awareness and growth within the STEM community is what drives Abraham to continue his community outreach efforts.

Pursuing a degree in electrical engineering has provided opportunities for Abraham he never imagined. In 2014, he participated in the NCAS Competition; NASA & JPL where his team won first place in the three-day competition where they designed, programmed and constructed a miniature rover. Abraham also secured an internship with Lockheed Martin as a College Tech Intern in the summer of 2015. In the internship, he developed MatLab GUI to attain, manipulate and graph antenna patterns, implement necessary antenna characteristics for RF engineers and created 2D, 3D, and polar plots from data for antenna pattern analysis. In the summer of 2016, Abraham started his own company where the translation experience he has had from Spanish to English throughout his life will be utilized to communicate effectively with customers and teammates alike. Ultimately he hopes to one day be a successful business owner with the ability to give back to the Hispanic community that has given him so much.

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