Program Exposes GEAR UP Students to STEM Careers
WESLACO – Reybotics, a Mercedes-based company owned by a former GEAR UP student, is helping change students’ lives with STEM education.
GEAR UP student Melissa Morales attends Weslaco East High School. She said Reybotics changed her future plans.
“I really didn’t know much about building robots. So I was the type (of person) you would tell what to do and I will do it, and I will be okay with it. But since this year’s project and last year, it was like I can put these two things together and make a totally new thing,” she said. “It’s just incredibly true, like a dream come true in a way because I never thought I was good at this and it’s amazing what you can learn in just a year or two.”
Melissa said she’s learning how to build rockets from Heriberto Reynoso, owner of Reybotics.
Reynoso said he wants to help students realize their dreams.
“My mission from day one was to always inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers. I had no idea it would lead to this. I love what I do. I feel like I never worked a day so it’s a dream come true,” he said.
Melissa said she was set on her career until she enrolled in the program.
“I was planning to go pre-med and now with this, it totally changed my major. So, with that my future basically improved a lot because, as I said before, we are migrants,” she said. “You don’t really expect a migrant to go to college because of financial difficulties, but with this it’s opened a lot more opportunities for scholarships and internships as well.”
Melissa added Reynoso is a mentor she’ll never forget.
“He has taught me how to use the machines. He takes time one-on-one to explain everything step-by-step from basically zero, and I did not know how to use these machines and he took the time to teach me all of this,” she said.