Scholar of the Week

Stephanie Flores
California State University, Long Beach

When Stephanie Flores was young, her parents strongly emphasized the importance of contributing to one’s community. From volunteering in holiday programs to participating in graffiti cleanup initiatives, Stephanie has always lent a helping hand. Her desire to help others succeed led her to receive a 2019 Edison International Scholarship, presented by Great Minds in STEM. She is currently a student at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB), where she is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering.

Stephanie moved from Mexico to California during her high school years, which presented the challenge of finding her place in a new and unfamiliar setting. In order to become more involved at her school, she joined the Felix Ventures Program, a group that focuses on helping Hispanic students develop leadership and wilderness survival skills. Through the program, she was able to network, make friends, and build her self-confidence.

As she became more involved in extracurricular activities, Stephanie applied for the U.S. Department of State Benjamin Gilman International Scholarship Program, which encourages minority and low-income students to participate in study abroad programs. She was awarded a scholarship to study abroad in Salamanca, Spain, and has since served as an ambassador for the program. While sharing her experiences with others, she began to develop and explore her own passion the STEM fields, which led her to pursue engineering at Mount San Antonio College (MTSAC).

At MTSAC, Stephanie founded the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) student chapter. In addition, she became involved with the college’s Society of Women Engineers and was eventually elected Vice-President of the organization. Stephanie also became involved in research projects at California State University, Fullerton and an internship with Cypress Creek Renewables.

Having transferred to CSULB, she plans to graduate with her bachelor’s in December of 2020. Inspired by her research, Stephanie has decided to focus her career in the renewables sector. As an undergraduate, she continues to inspire others through her outreach efforts. She notes, “In my mind it’s always about helping humanity, our communities, and our world to be better.” Great Minds in STEM proudly recognizes Stephanie as Scholar of the week for her outstanding achievements and contributions to the STEM community.

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