San Marcos,
17:50 PM

Physics professor wins HENAAC Award

Press Release | By Eric Breier

Gerardo Dominguez, an associate professor of physics at Cal State San Marcos, is among the 2016 Class of Hispanic Engineer National Achievement Awards Conference (HENAAC) Award winners, Great Minds in STEM announced Friday.

Dominguez, a faculty member at CSUSM since 2011, is being honored for Outstanding Technical Achievement. He is one of 27 Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) professionals selected to receive a HENAAC Award. Winners will be honored at the 28th Annual HENAAC Conference in Anaheim on October 5-9.

“Dr. Dominguez brings depth of research expertise to his department and the College of Science and Mathematics,” said Katherine Kantardjieff, dean of CSUSM’s College of Science and Mathematics. “He has quickly established an active, productive, externally funded, highly respected research program and has made unique technical advancements which will impact science for the foreseeable future. He also actively engages undergraduate students, largely underrepresented and Hispanic, in the work.”

Dominguez has previously been recognized by the National Academy of Sciences, NASA and Diverse: Issues in Higher Education as a top researcher in planetary astrophysics and atmospheric chemistry.

Dominguez earned his bachelor’s, master’s and Ph.D. in physics from UC Berkeley. His awards and recognition include earning a NASA Graduate Student Research Fellowship, a NASA Group Achievement Award and the Cozzarelli Prize from the National Academy of Sciences. He also was named an Emerging Scholar by Diverse: Issues in Higher Education.

He currently is conducting research on the isotopic composition of molecular clouds to understand how the sun and the planets of our solar system were formed. He is also conducting research in the application of nano-optical techniques for mapping the chemical composition of primitive planetary materials such as meteorites and cometary dust grains.

Great Minds in STEM is a non-profit organization dedicated to keeping America technologically strong by promoting STEM careers, especially in underserved communities. The organization’s nationwide programming focuses on STEM educational awareness from kindergarten through college, and on seeking out and documenting the world-class contributions of Hispanic professionals in STEM to serve as role models for the next generation of American engineers and scientists.

About California State University San Marcos

Building on an innovative 26-year history, California State University San Marcos is a forward-focused institution, dedicated to preparing future leaders, building great communities and solving critical issues. Located on a 304-acre hillside overlooking the City of San Marcos, it is the only public four-year comprehensive university serving North San Diego, Southwest Riverside and South Orange Counties.

The University enrolls over 14,000 students. With approximately 2,000 employees, the institution is a Great College to Work For® (The Chronicle of Higher Education). As a recipient of the annual HEED Award since 2014 — a national honor recognizing U.S. colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion — CSUSM is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment.