Ricardo Gonzalez A HACC Student Profile

In HACC News, Profiles by Emilie Stoltzfus

Students may have seen Ricardo Gonzalez around the bookstore or at a new student orientation. He is one of those students who attend as many club events as possible, offering assistance or information. His openness and willingness to engage in his environment are qualities that make Gonzalez memorable.

Originally from Puerto Rico, Gonzalez spent the majority of his life in Lancaster. As a child he suffered from a bacterial infection which almost took his life. The illness threatened to break his spirit and mentally drain hope from him. In those dim moments, Gonzalez reflected back to his guidance counselor, Mrs.Mitchell, at Washington Elementary as an inspirational figure.

When he felt hopeless, Mrs.Mitchell gave him a book about volcanoes, which planted in him a lifetime curiosity for the world around him. Gonzalez lit up as he discussed geology; “I love the sciences… By discovering and collecting data, scientists can ‘Guessimate’ when a volcano will erupt.”

Due to his impaired vision, he takes precaution while going for walks. His curiosity to discover new territory around him, coupled with his favorite pastime of going on walks make Gonzalez a natural candidate for this type of work. His walks are equivalent to a scientist collecting data in a lab. In a way, his perception is particularly valuable due to his keen observations and attention to detail in his surroundings.

He is willing to help clubs that ask him, but the only club he is officially part of is the Student Government Association (SGA). He believes any student interested in joining a club should start by coming to the SGA office. “The SGA is a great segue to any club,” stated Gonzalez. Sarah Smith, majoring in History, has known Gonzalez for two years. “He’s just one of the people I’ve gone to for help… he always wants to go out of his way to do something for people,” said Smith.

He can honestly say that he’s enjoyed every class and professor he’s had while attending HACC. Adam Jenkins is his favorite, mainly for his approachability and good sense of humor. Once Gonzalez completes his courses at HACC Lancaster campus, he plans on taking physical sciences at the Harrisburg campus to complete his Associates degree. His goal is to continue his education for his bachelors, his masters, and finally, his doctorate in geology. His dream job is working at Yellow Stone National Park or Mount St Helens. HACC Lancaster will be sad to see him move on at the end of this semester, but we wish him well in his studies.