Seattle STEM Trip - Santiago Ixta Acuna

The Future Hispanic Leaders of America (FHLA) STEM trip was not only a trip, it was a beneficial learning experience for me. I had the opportunity to tour the Boeing Company and Microsoft, two companies that I dreamed of visiting. The experience was incredible, and I learned from visiting both of these companies. Boeing was my favorite experience by far, since I have taken an interest in aviation recently. Touring the factory was something I thought I would never have the opportunity to do, but thanks to this trip I experienced the tour. Once I stepped on the actual ground of Boeing it was a dream come true. I was able to see all the new aircraft lined up for test flights, inspection and how it takes thousands of people to create one giant project.  

Touring Microsoft was very eye-opening for me. I was able to see what the early years of the company looked like as a start-up company... to what the company is doing right now. Microsoft also gave us a small glimpse of where the company is headed in the future. It was interesting to see the use of technology to measure what nutrients, water, moisture, etc. crops have in real time, letting farmers know what the crops need next and making the most out of what they already have. I spend my summers working in agriculture and seeing technology spread to the fields where I work is amazing.

Going to the University of Washington was something I wanted to do since my senior year is just around the corner. I soon have to start narrowing down the school of choice that I could see myself going to. The university was helpful when showing us that you don't need the perfect 4.0 to attend a university. What they look for is what makes you a good fit for the university and how they can help you further your education.

Overall this trip has helped me reach a personal goal of getting to tour these three locations with incredible people. It impacted my academic goals by giving me the opportunity to tour one of my top five schools to further my education. The biggest impact this trip has had on me is... that there are careers waiting for members and future members of  Future Hispanic Leaders of America. With this trip I realized I am capable of having a career in this industry of STEM.

Luis Caloca