LONG BEACH, Calif.--A select group of Cal State Long Beach (CSULB) students recently honed their leadership skills at the 10th annual Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement (MESA) Student Leadership Conference, a special invitation-only conference for math-based majors.
Sponsored by the California Utilities Diversity Council, the conference offered extensive professional and leadership development through direct interaction with industry mentors and speakers. The hand-picked MESA students—all science, engineering, or math majors—represented more than 30 universities and community colleges from across the state.
CSULB junior civil engineering major Maritza Bravo was honored as the winner in the MESA Video Challenge. Teams or individuals were asked to develop and create a one-minute video that encouraged middle school students to pursue careers in energy. Students presented their videos and were asked questions by a panel of industry judges. Bravo was presented with her award during the conference’s closing dinner.
Other CSULB students participating in the event were seniors Ayaka Clark (civil engineering), Enoc Hernandez (mechanical engineering) and Moses Holley (electrical engineering); juniors Alexis Ortega (aerospace engineering), Victoria Osaji and Daniel Rodriquez (electrical engineering), and Eduardo Ugalde and Marycruz Zelaya (mechanical engineering); and sophomore Tracy Osaji (biochemistry).
Students participated in mock interviews, connected with industry representatives from 16 national and California companies and heard guest speakers. State Senator and MESA alumnus Alex Padilla encouraged students to work hard and strive for success and was honored with the MESA Outstanding Alumni Award.
“We know that California’s economy needs more STEM workers to stay competitive. These students provide the solution to industry’s need for well-trained professionals,” said MESA Executive Director Oscar F. Porter. “These students were selected to attend the conference because they have strong leadership skills. This event gives them a chance to interact extensively with STEM professionals currently working in industry.”
CSULB students were sponsored by Edison International and Southern California Gas. Their generous contributions allowed students from Southern California campuses to attend. Additionally, Edison International and Southern California Gas employees volunteered their time to work closely with the students during the conference.
MESA promotes STEM success for more than 28,000 educationally disadvantaged secondary, community college and four-year college students in California through project-based learning, academic counseling and exposure to STEM careers, so they can graduate from college with math-based degrees. Seventy percent of MESA high school graduates statewide went directly to college after graduation compared to 48 percent of all California graduates. Sixty percent of MESA students go on to math, science or engineering majors.
For more information about MESA visit http://mesa.ucop.edu/home.html.
# # #
Media Contacts: Rick Gloady, 562/985-5454, Rick.Gloady@csulb.edu
Ken Swisher, 562/985-2703, Ken.Swisher@csulb.edu