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Tony Ortiz has directed the New Mexico State Science Fair, an Intel ISEF affiliated fair, for almost a decade, and was instrumental in bringing Intel ISEF to Albuquerque in 2007. New Mexico Tech president Daniel H. Lopez said, “Tony Ortiz is a tireless champion of education in New Mexico. His office is directly responsible for opening the world of science, engineering, and technology to thousands of youngsters in the state.”
Ortiz has not only helped students across his state, but across the country and even the world, by becoming more involved with SSP as a member of the Advisory Council and, this year, as Chair of the Council. He enjoys being a part of the Intel ISEF, for “what it represents, to what it gives back to the students,” he says. “Seeing their excitement when they attend the events…the excitement of the first day, when they are at registration, to the last day, when they are leaving. It’s a different type of excitement, but they are still just as excited. That is rewarding to me.”
He sees SSP as a way to broaden his existing work in science education with NMT. “SSP has been a great experience,” he says. “Being in a relationship with an organization that promotes science inquiry, I feel at home.”
Engaging in science research can impart a variety of skills—problem-solving, critical thinking, collaboration and effective communication, to name a few.
In 2003, we were being recruited to head up judging at Intel ISEF, which was being held in Phoenix two years later.