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CAREER OUTLOOK


individuals via recognition, feedback, or expertise. That way each person can contribute to his or her fullest potential. He suggests that students become members of the World Resources Institute, Power-eng.com, and Young Professionals in Energy. They should acquire experience in Technical and Commercial Contract Language, and listening instead of just hearing. Monsalve’s dream job is to coach Colombia’s national soccer team or the USA Women’s National team.


SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA EDISON Rebeca Sandoval


Planner Power System


B.S. Degree in Electrical Engineering, Cal State University – Los Angeles Rebeca Sandoval left El Salvador for the United States when she was 18-years-old. Ever a curious child, she loved disassembling toys that contained moving parts, and later became the first college graduate in her family. Sandoval credits


her mother, grandmother, and coffee-grower grandfather with telling her to never listen to anyone who told her she couldn’t do something. That was a key lesson learned, when a guidance counselor told Sandoval she would never become an engineer. While attending college, she interned for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, and after graduation in 2003 joined Southern California Edison. Now Sandoval maintains a 10-year Sub-transmission Substation Plan for multiple 66 kV (kiloolt) and 115kV systems, sponsors multiple capital projects, and supports a five-member team. An avid employee mentor, she advises students to join engineering organizations, and if interested in utilities to read the print or online versions ofTransmission and Distribution World magazine. In her spare time, the goal-oriented leader prepares for and runs half and full marathons and walks her dog, Charlie. Sandoval’s dream job besides her current one would to be a veterinarian.


U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Jose Zayas


Director Wind and Water Power Technologies Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering, University of New Mexico Master of Science Degree in Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering, University of California at Davis


As a teenager living in Puerto Rico, Jose Zayas worked for an engineering firm designing and building ventilation systems which piqued his interest in engineering.


Robotics inspired Zayas as an undergraduate. After joining the www.hispanicengineer.com


solar power group at Sandia National Laboratories, and the DoE’s Wind and Water Power Technologies group program in 2011 his passion for renewable energy emerged. The group works with national laboratories, academia, and industry, funds research and development; and deploys wind and water power systems with federal, state, business and other groups. Zayas has 80 team members and a budget of more than $100 million. He is excited that domestic turbine makers using novel material development and high-performance technology have lowered costs, and increased efficiencies in the reliability and viability of wind energy. He predicts that wind power resources will spread nationwide from 39 states currently, and grow from its present five percent contribution to the national grid. He urges students to investigate DoE’s Atmosphere to Electrons, http://energy.gov/eere/wind/ atmosphere-electrons, website. Zayas gives back by engaging with young students and assisting with DoE’s Collegiate Wind Competition http://apps2.eere.energy.gov/wind/ windexchange/windcompetition/.


XCEL ENERGY Frank Mendoza, P.E.


Operations Engineer Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering Technology, Texas Tech University During college, Frank Mendoza was an IBM intern and fell in love with computer networks and PCs. Mendoza works with Xcel’s control center team dispatchers/ system operators. During outages, they handle trouble tickets,


monitor system performance, and direct restoration efforts. He also helps, in conjunction with supervisors, to direct the daily operation of Xcel’s distribution system. He says that his area’s most transformative change “has been the influx of renewable energy in the form of wind and solar power on our system and working through the challenges those pose.” The American Wind Energy Association ranks Excel the nation’s number one utility wind power provider. Mendoza’s proudest professional accomplishment has been becoming the Operations Engineer for the Texas and New Mexico portion of Xcel Energy. He volunteers for Xcel’s annual 4-H Power Camp, where he and colleagues teach high school age 4-H members electrical safety and basic electrical wiring and participate in leadership and team-building activities. Mendoza advises students to take courses that include project management exercises. Xcel Energy is a $12 billion electric and natural gas company that serves eight Midwestern and Western states and has 5.5 million customers.


HISPANIC ENGINEER & Information Technology | Fall 2015 47


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