Meet a Fluid Power Scholarship Winner – Giovanni Hernandez

The NFPA Education and Technology Foundation has awarded 23 $2,000 scholarships to students pursuing fluid power related fields of study.

One of the winners, Giovanni Hernandez, is attending the University of California, Irvine. We asked Giovanni a few questions about winning the scholarship.

What does winning a Fluid Power Scholarship mean to you?

Winning this Fluid Power Scholarship means so much to me.  Higher education is very important in securing a stable career and one that offers growth over the long term.  Of course, higher education is not free, and I constantly have to balance working part-time while taking a full-time rigorous STEM course load.  This scholarship means that I can focus more on my coursework and academic projects instead of worrying about how I will cover my tuition expenses.  It will allow me to focus on my education, which is something I will always be grateful for.

Why did you choose to learn about fluid power?
I have always been interested in learning about STEM concepts but especially those that shape the world around us.  Whether it be in the heavy machinery used to build the buildings we all use daily, or in the gasoline pumps that millions use every day, fluid power is everywhere.   No matter what industry I end up in down the road, there will be the use of fluid power.  One of the main reasons I decided to select an engineering major was to make a difference in this world and that would be impossible without learning about fluid power.  

What are your career aspirations? What type of fluid power job do you hope to get after you graduate?

I am majoring in Aerospace Engineering and would like to have a career at a large aerospace corporation.  I will use fluid power a lot in this position as it is involved in almost every aspect of this industry.  One application of fluids in this career would be studying airflow around structures like aircraft, and how this fluid (air in this case) affects the aircraft and its components.  Another application would be using fluid power in the components of the aircraft, for example, the hydraulics that power the landing gear in planes.  There are endless uses for fluid power, and I will be using several in my future career.

A minimum GPA of 2.5 out of 4.0, 500-word essay, and letter of recommendation were required from each applicant. The NFPA Foundation’s goal is to help graduating high school students, and individuals enrolled in community colleges, technical schools and universities pursue their academic interests in fluid power.

One way NFPA members can get involved with scholarship programs is to volunteer as a judge to serve on the application review committee or mentor a robotics team as they work towards incorporating pneumatics in their designs. This year 16 judges from 13 NFPA member companies reviewed 50 student applications to the Fluid Power Scholarship program. If you are interested in learning more, please contact Haley Nemeth at

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