GMiS Scholar of the Week
Robert Amezcua Memorial Scholarship
University of Texas at El Paso
2020 GMiS Outstanding Undergraduate Student Leader
Alex Lopez believes that engineers have a responsibility to help make the world a better place, whether through inventions, designs, education, and labor. For his passion to enrich the lives of others through the power of engineering, Alex was awarded the 2020 Robert Amezcua Scholarship and declared the Great Minds in STEM (GMiS) Outstanding Undergraduate Scholar at the 2020 Conference. He will be graduating with a Bachelor’s in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) in Fall 2020, with plans to obtain a master's degree by Fall 2022.
Raised in a humble setting by two Mexican parents trained as engineers, Alex was taught that being successful was not about money, but about helping others. Alex’s childhood was rich in both cultural heritage and appreciation for STEM. His family placed his education above all other concerns and determined to see him attend college. He shares, “I see school as a gift from my parents to me, … studying is a privilege not everybody has or everybody gets to take advantage of."
Once enrolled at UTEP, Alex’s resiliency and perseverance to fight for his dream of becoming an Engineer have been the cornerstone of his success. He has been on the Dean’s List for eight semesters and is a member of the Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honor Society. He has interned with Cummins in the Summer of 2019 as a Product Quality Engineer, and with Boeing as a Materials & Manufacturing Technology Engineer in the Summer of 2020
In my culture, hard work and resiliency are very important, no matter your conditions. You don’t get to choose where to start, but you can choose where to finish, you make life what you want it to be.
To Alex, volunteering is an essential part of being a human, and giving back to the world is a moral responsibility. With this in mind, Alex joined Engineers for a Sustainable World, a non-profit organization that uses technical design projects to address sustainability and environmental issues around the world. Alex's work with the organization has taken him around the world, designing and building rainwater harvesting systems in small towns Texas towns, distributing water filters in the Philippines, and participating in the reconstruction of a pedestrian bridge in Puerto Rico after the infrastructural collapse.
Alex has made it a point to help introduce students to opportunities in STEM through various programs, including volunteering at the 2019 Army CCDC HBCU/MI Design Competition facilitated by GMiS, and as a STEM instructor for the UTEP ExciTES Program. He was selected to serve as a GMiS Delegate for the 2019 Conference.
As he carries on, Alex hopes to make his mark on the world, sharing about his motivation for doing so, “It isn’t about the money, it is about changing lives, changing the way we live.” In recognition of his academic excellence and his commitment to creating a sustainable world for all through his love for Engineering, GMiS is proud to recognize Alex as Scholar of the Week.