Hispanic careers conference is Saturday at ISU

Idaho National Laboratory employees are among those scheduled to speak at the fifth annual Hispanic Healthcare and Technology Careers Conference on Saturday in Pocatello.

The event will be held in the Pond Student Union at Idaho State University. Juan Alvarez, chief operating officer of operations at INL, will speak on mathematics and secondary education between 9:30 a.m. and 10:10 a.m. He will speak in the Salmon River Room and is one of four speakers scheduled for the first session.

There also are four speakers scheduled for the second session, which will run from 10:20 a.m. to 11:10 a.m. One of them is Luis Quinones, an INL nuclear engineer, who will speak in the Bengal Cafe.

Registration runs from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. in the Wood River Room.

Cristian Arcega will deliver the keynote address from 1:40 p.m. to 2:25 p.m. in the ballroom. Arcega’s story was featured in the 2015 movie “Spare Parts.” He was born in Mexico and brought across the border illegally as a child, according to a New York Times article. He was part of a four-person team of high schoolers — three of them undocumented immigrants from Mexico — that won an underwater robot competition, funded by NASA, in which they beat a team from MIT to win gold, a wired.com article said.

According to event organizers, the conference is meant to allow young students to explore career options in the science, technology, engineering and math fields. Hispanics are underrepresented in these fields at the university level and are not exposed to them sufficiently in school before college. The presenters at the conference are all Latino, and will “share their unique struggles and accomplishments in achieving their positions,” organizers said in a news release.