Student Name: Justin Ochoa

Graduation Date: May 2019

Hometown: Annapolis, MD

Primary Major:  Mechanical Engineering

Why I decided to enroll at the University of Maryland: I was approaching the end of my associates degree at Anne Arundel Community College and needed to decide which university I wanted to transfer to in order to continue my education. I had a good GPA, and had many options but wanted to stay close to home. I chose University of Maryland over other in-state schools because of their prestigious engineering program and because of all the opportunities that are presented in the area when you graduate from UMD.

Why I chose engineering:  I have always enjoyed math and science. As a child, I always wanted to take apart all of my toys to see how they worked. As a young adult, I did the same to cars as I did to my childhood toys. When I started college, I took classes in many different subjects and found myself interested in my math and science classes and not so much the others. I had been told engineering is difficult and I like to be challenged, so I signed up for an engineering class. I liked the class and chose to major in engineering.

Activities I do outside of class: Outside of school, I work for an event company. We mostly work in D.C. setting up barricades, fencing, and flooring for events such as the presidential inauguration. I am also a member of the Phi Theta Kappa national honors society

Honors and awards I have received at Maryland: I don't start at UMD until the fall and have not yet had the opportunity to earn any awards (I hope to). At AACC, I was an honors list student and graduated Magna Cum Laude of my class. I was also a member of the Phi Theta Kappa national honors society

After graduation, I plan to: After graduation, I hope to attend grad school and earn a master's in either mechanical or chemical engineering. After I finish school, I hope to get a job in design. I would prefer to work for a company that furthers renewable energy technology. I also want to take some time off and travel. Later in life, I want to teach engineering classes part-time and start my own company

Thank you for the support of your scholarship: Thank you, Mrs. Kimmy Duong and Dr. Long Nguyen, for awarding me this scholarship. With your support, I will be able to afford my tuition and books. Words cannot express how grateful I am for your contribution toward my educational goals. I greatly admire your philanthropy and hope to someday, find myself in a position where I can do the same for others. I was quite worried about how I was going to be able to afford school and I can't tell you how much relief your scholarship has brought me. I will do my very best to continue to do well in school and be worthy of your scholarship.


Dear Mrs. Duong and Dr. Nguyen:

I am writing to express my gratitude for your contribution to the Long Nguyen and Kimmy Duong Endowed Scholarship. It is due to your generosity that I am able to pursue my education at the A. James Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland, and I am very honored to be the recipient of this award.

I have recently transferred from Anne Arundel Community College with an Associate's degree and will continue studying mechanical engineering at UMD this fall. I have always been passionate about science and it is this passion that drove me to study engineering. As a child, I liked to take my toys apart to see how they worked, and as a teenager I was always in the garage working on cars. Mechanical engineering seems to be a perfect blend of my scientific interests and my mechanical inclination. While studying engineering at Anne Arundel Community College I participated in Engineering Ambassadors where all the different science departments would come together and set up several activity stations. Elementary school students from across the county would come and participate in the activity that each department had set up for them. As an Engineering Ambassador, I also went to our Second Friday engineering events and talked to prospective engineering students about what it is like to study engineering. This spring, I graduated from AACC as Magna Cum Laude and plan to continue to excel academically as I continue my education. While at UMD, I plan on participating in their formula racing team and I would like to do a semester abroad in order to experience another culture and expand my view of the world. After I earn by bachelor's degree, I hope to attend graduate school and earn a master's in either mechanical or chemical engineering. After I am done with school, I would like to get a job doing design work in a field like renewable energy. I want to work in renewable energy so that I may make my contribution in making the world a better place.

Thank you again for your donation to the A. James Clark school of Engineering scholarship program, and for making it possible for students like me to pursue their dreams.


Justin Ochoa