Student Scholar: Ashlyn Hooten

Tim Vanderpool, Jacob Chinn photo

By the time this UA Mining Engineering student graduated in May, she already had three summer internships under her belt with the international mineral and gas company Freeport McMoRan. She now has a full-time, project-planning job in Freeport’s Southern Arizona office. 

Ashlyn Hooten felt STEM’s impact after finishing many of her initial engineering classes — math, chemistry, science — and moving into the core mining curriculum.  “A lot of those mining-specific classes use things we learned our freshman and sophomore years,” she says, “and then built on them.” 

Professional training in the UA’s mining program meant that Hooten, a native of Flagstaff, was perfectly poised to chase her passion — “I always knew I wanted to be an engineer,” she says. “Then I went out to the San Xavier student mine. That’s when I knew mining engineering was what I really wanted to do.” The San Xavier is a former working mine, located south of Tucson maintained by UA students, who gain hard-rock experience beneath Arizona’s desert.