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Broesicke honored with highest student award from Latino STEM group

Wednesday, October 26, 2016
Ph.D. student Osvaldo Broesicke, right, with Latinos in Science and Engineering President Will Davis. Broesicke won the organization's highest honor for students, the Padrino Scholarship and Medalla de Plata, or silve medal. (Photo Courtesy: Osvaldo Broesicke)
Ph.D. student Osvaldo Broesicke, right, with MAES President Will Davis. Broesicke won the organization's highest honor for students, the Padrino Scholarship and Medalla de Plata, or silver medal. (Photo Courtesy: Osvaldo Broesicke)

The organization MAES – Latinos in Science and Engineering gave environmental engineering Ph.D. student Osvaldo Broesicke its highest honor earlier this month, awarding him a Padrino Scholarship.

The scholarship is tied to the group’s top prize for professional scientists and engineers and intended to create a mentoring relationship between the two honorees.

“I am honored to have been selected to receive this award,” Broesicke said, noting he’s been involved in the organization since he was an undergraduate at the University of Texas at El Paso. He said he looks forward to extending his role and encouraging Latino graduate students.

“I am dedicated to expanding STEM through minorities and excited to be helping [our group] promote graduate education for minorities.”

The Padrino Scholarship is named for the Spanish word for “godfather,” Broesicke said, because of the special relationship between the student and professional winners.

“This pairing of Madrina/Padrino (Godmother/Godfather) - Ahijada/Ahijado (Goddaughter/Godson) is a mentoring relationship of the Hispanic culture,” he said. “This allows the establishment of a lifelong mentor relationship in which the [professional] provides guidance and serves as a role model for the young engineer or scientist.”

Broesicke’s scholarship also comes with the group’s Medalla de Plata, or “silver medal.” MAES — the acronym comes from the group's original name that's no longer in use — introduced the medal this year to echo the professional prize, the Medalla de Oro, or “gold medal.”

Winning the silver medal and scholarship means the organization expects big things from Broesicke, including that he’ll one day take his place as a Medalla de Oro winner.

Entering his second year of studies with John Crittenden, Broesicke focuses on the nexus of food, energy and water, investigating the role commercial urban farms have in addressing the food needs of future generations.