(HARLINGEN, Texas) – If there is one word to describe Mallory Torres, it is fierce.
Not only is she conquering the male-dominated field of mechatronics, but she is also doing so after overcoming personal hardships.
In 2017, she completed an Associate of Applied Science degree in Welding Technology at Texas State Technical College, where her curiosity for mechatronics began to grow. Then, in 2019, she earned an Associate of Applied Science degree in Mechatronics Technology at TSTC.
“A lot of the machines that we used in our welding classes were very expensive,” she said. “I started to wonder who would repair them if they broke down. I got curious about what technicians would even look for as they were repairing the equipment.”
That interest in electrical components led her to mechatronics.
“As my time in the welding program ended, I knew mechatronics was something I wanted to explore,” she said. “The program really showed me that anything can be repaired or built. It’s all about troubleshooting and finding the problem.”
Torres excelled in the program despite personal hardship.
“I joined the program at the same time that my mom was battling stage 4 cancer,” she said. “She passed away in December 2017. My dad pushed me to finish school for my mom, and that’s what I did. Losing her made me work harder.”
Two short years later, Torres is working as a mechatronics technician and is elated to have two beneficial trades under her belt.
“My time in the programs flew by, and the instructors were always very helpful,” she said. “They always wanted us to succeed as if we were their own kids.”
Mechatronics instructor Eldwin Leija saw firsthand the perseverance that Torres showed as a student.
“Mallory was very dedicated and always pushed herself to the next level,” he said. “Her dedication has carried on over to her job and career. It was a pleasure having her in class, and I know she will succeed.”
Torres is also grateful for the skills that she learned outside the classroom.
“TSTC taught me how to prepare myself when I entered the workforce,” she said. “We received assistance with interviews and the job search. Studying there was honestly the best decision I ever made.”
Registration for the fall semester is underway. For more information, visit tstc.edu.