Out West student blog


Tony Cruz and his fiancée Dhali outside his residence in Ng Hall where he works as an RA.

Tony Cruz '22
Hometown: Elk Grove, CA
Major: Chemical Engineering
Intern, California Air Resources Board

Why did you want to do this internship?

Last year's wildfires and recent rainfall shortages have motivated me to work on air quality and climate change solutions. CARB is a highly technical and aggressive agency that allows me to work with the urgency I believe is needed in the public sector to tackle California's environmental challenges. This internship is unique in that it allows me to observe both technical and executive/administrative aspects of CARB.

How does your role support the host organization’s mission?

My role in the Chair's Office gives Chair Randolph additional support as she establishes herself within the first year of her tenure. My work within the Toxic and Transportation Division involves developing software that will handle registration and compliance forms for refrigeration units. My programming knowledge is critical to an agency that has contracted this type of work in the past.

Describe one project you will be working on this summer.

I am working on a backup for the Air Resources Board Equipment Registration (ARBER) system. The software reads registration PDFs and mass registration spreadsheets and uploads the information to a SQL database. The project will save hundreds of person-hours and allow CARB employees to spend less time working on data entry.

How does this project relate to your studies and/or career goals?

This project allows me to sharpen my programming skills while introducing me to the areas where scientific and engineering principles meet regulations. While listening in on the Chair's meetings, I have gained knowledge of power players and stakeholders that rarely make the headlines. This is my first time applying chemical engineering principles outside of a laboratory setting, so this experience has been challenging yet rewarding.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

I enjoy cooking, golfing, playing basketball, and putting together puzzles with my fiancée.


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