Nolan Steinbuch has always dreamed of being an astronaut. The 17-year-old Alpine native recently graduated cum laude at St. Augustine High School with a 4.3 GPA.
“Since I was a child, I was interested in space,” he said. “Originally, my goal was to be an astronaut, but I have some vision problems that keep me from becoming an astronaut, but I wanted to find another way to be involved in space and helping mankind touch the stars, so I decided to go into aerospace engineering in order to design spaceships that we would send up into space.”
His father, Troy Steinbuch, is a San Diego driver for UPS. In a scholarship exclusive to the children of UPS employees, Nolan was selected as the recipient of the UPS 2021 James E. Casey scholarship and will receive $2500 per year for four years as he heads to his dream college, UCSD. Nolan said this scholarship is a tremendous relief on his family since college tuition is extremely expensive. He said he believes education is important as it is “a powerful gift that once received, can never be taken away.”
“This is really going to help me in furthering my education, because without the scholarships that I have received, I would have had to go to a community college instead of UCSD, which was my personal goal,” Nolan said. “It has given me the opportunity to learn more about what I am passionate about, broaden my horizons, and helps me become the best version of myself that I can be, because without these scholarships I would not have been able to afford college. I begin my journey at UCSD this September.”
Nolan said his father is his biggest role model in life.
“Since I was a kid, he always taught me to put my best foot forward when you are doing work, and to never give up,” he said. “Being part of the UPS family has been a huge blessing for me because of the opportunities they give me with this scholarship. Without my dad, working as hard as he has for the more than 30 years he has been with UPS, I would not be where I am today. So, I am very grateful for UPS, and my dad for all his work and teaching me to be the best version of myself.”
St. Augustine is a private allboy high school in North Park and Nolan was able to take six AP classes which he can use for his college credit.
“On top of schoolwork and academics, I was on the golf team, playing varsity golf in my senior year,” he said. “I was also club president for the Restless Hearts Club, which helps mothers in need and newborn children, and part of The Augustinian, the school’s journalism club.”
In addition to the James E. Casey scholarship, Nolan was awarded the Teamsters Local 542 Rick Aceves Memorial scholarship, and the James R. Hoffa Memorial scholarship fund.