Carlos Rivas STEM Endowment

2017 Scholarship Recipient

Carlos Rivas, Verbum Dei High School

Meet Carlos Rivas, a recent graduate of Verbum Dei High School and the 2017 recipient of the Dr. Wanda M. Austin STEM Scholarship. Carlos is a super scholar!

After an uplifting school field trip to the Air & Space exhibits at the California Science Center in Los Angeles, Carlos set his sights on the stars. At the age of 8, Carlos had solidified his plan to be an aerospace engineer. From that point on, Carlos, with his mom’s urgings, relentlessly pursued his academic studies.

Living in a low-income, single-parent household in the community of Watts in Los Angeles has not been easy for Rivas. Despite these challenges, he discovered a passion for education early on. Carlos continued to study hard, and, throughout middle and high school, worked on building rocket models and studied advanced math and science. His passion for engineering led him to establish the Engineering Club at Verbum Dei High School, where he served as the club’s president.

Carlos insists that his circumstances do not define him, but instead empower him to achieve his goals. Carlos attends St. John’s University in Collegeville, Minnesota, pursuing his physics degree, which will launch him on his trajectory to becoming an aerospace engineer.