ECE graduate and NASA Astronaut, José Hernández, given the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute’s highest honor — the CHCI Medallion of Excellence

January 4th, 2012

According to Hernández’s bio on the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute’s (CHCI) website, Engineer and astronaut José Hernández has been a lifelong advocate of Latino youth pursuing their dreams and offers his own success story as evidence that hard work and education offer lasting rewards.

Hernández, who was a field laborer as a child, was the first person to use Spanish language in space through his tweets during the 2009 Space Shuttle mission STS-128. He founded the Reaching for the Stars Foundation to provide scholarships to students pursuing careers in science and engineering. His foundation mirrors the assistance he received as a student through the Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement program, which helps students from educationally disadvantaged backgrounds attain degrees in science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) fields.

Hernández has also announced his candidacy in October for Congress in California’s 10th district.

He received his M.S. in ECE in 1986 from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

CHCI 2011 Hispanic Heritage Awards

Hernández Congressional Bid (Huffington Post)

Hernández to run for Congress (