On Friday, September 30, Zaida Hernandez,  Latina NASA engineer, first-generation Salvadoran American, STEM advocate, and author, inspired children at the Project Access Resource Center at Crystal View Apartments in Garden Grove, California, to pursue their education and dreams. Presented in cooperation with KIA USA and Lil’ Libros Publishing, the special event was an unprecedented and memorable occasion.

“It was such a great event,” said Veronica Arias-Aguayo, Resident Services, Regional Manager for Project Access. “Zaida gave a wonderful presentation on her career, presented a reading from her book, and then signed complimentary copies for our youth.”

My First Space Words in English and Spanish as described on Amazon: “Space, telescopes, missions, and UFOs – welcome to your first glossary space words! Zaida Hernandez, a Latina space engineer, introduces little ones to their first space words in English and Spanish, from professions and animals to transportation and planets. Her in-depth knowledge of the world’s inner workings and scientific accomplishments is brought to life by Jayri Gómez, a Dominican Republic artist who colorfully reimagines space as we know it. Parents will love this educational bilingual English-Spanish board book due to its bridging of two languages to explore space words and how it will aid children in understanding the universe.”

According to her bio on Amazon: “Growing up, Zaida Hernandez always had a fascination with space – stars, planets, and the unknown! When not spending time with family, she loves participating in outreach events locally and worldwide, spreading her love for space. In her first collaboration with Lil’ Libros, she hopes to inspire future bilingual scientists, engineers, and space explorers! Currently, she is working as an engineer at NASA.”

“The event was meant to inspire our underserved and under-resourced youth to achieve big things in their lives,” Bianca Casillas Zavala, Resident Services Coordinator for the Project Access Resource Center at Crystal View Apartments. “ You can tell by the photos that our audience was very receptive to Zaida and her presence – everyone had a wonderful time, and I know it will be a positive, long-lasting memory for our residents.”  


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