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Salvador Cortes Soancatl

California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
Cisco Scholar

Salvador Cortes Soancatl

The hardships my mother and my siblings have faced is what has encouraged me to pursue a career in engineering.

On Salvador Cortes Soancatl’s bedroom door is a poster of famed scientist and inventor, Nikola Tesla, surrounded by immense arcs of electricity. Salvador, a sophomore electrical engineering major at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, is inspired by Tesla’s story—and the parallels between Tesla’s life and his own.

Salvador was brought to the United States at a young age and raised by his mother who did not have a formal education, yet encouraged his goal of attending college. While in high school, Salvador volunteered at the local library, planning activities for the summer reading program and reading to children about science and space. 

At Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Salvador is actively involved in the Future Fuels Club and the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers. Salvador’s goal is to work for a company built around electricity—like Tesla—while giving back to the community.

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