College of Science

We lost José Flores Velázquez, a CPP Physics and Astronomy Alum

Jose Flores Velasquez

We lost one of our own Wednesday when Cal Poly Pomona alumnus José Flores Velázquez was killed in a drive-by shooting near his family home in Los Angeles. The 2018 physics graduate was a doctoral student at UC Irvine, thanks in part to the Cal-Bridge Program he entered in 2016 while at CPP.

"José was exactly the kind of student Cal-Bridge was designed for," Cal-Bridge Director and CPP Physics and Astronomy Professor Alexander Rudolph said, "someone with so much ability and promise that the program could help to make it to graduate school."

Velázquez was hoping to eventually work at NASA after finishing the Ph.D. program at University of California, Irvine. He was awarded an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship to fund his graduate work while still at CPP and conducted research at CPP, Harvard and Northwestern. He even presented his research on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.

"José was a kind, loving person whose sunny optimism lifted up everyone around him," Rudolph said. "This is a terrible loss for his friends and family and all of us who knew him."

LA TImes news story