Fabian Salinas ’18
By Katherine Waters
This article appeared originally in the Fall 2018 issue of Frontiers Magazine.
During his time at SMC, Fabian Salinas was known on campus as being something of a Renaissance man.
“It’s really just me going after whatever it is that I enjoy,” he says about his variety of interests. “Some days I just really want to do math, which might sound weird to some people, but that’s just what I want to do.”
A math major at SMC, Salinas became interested in chemistry and decided to pursue it to an extent as well, assisting professor Adam Siegfried on a solar cell research project at Furman University. He plans on transferring to Furman, where he has received a full scholarship, to major in math (with a possible double major in chemistry) and hopes to continue working on the same research project that he has the past two summers.
During his time as an SMC student, Salinas joined the math team, led by Dr. David Gibson. In the spring, the team placed second in the 24th annual North Georgia Mathematics Tournament, winning against teams that were more than double their size. Salinas individually placed second overall. Gibson notes that Salinas was an exceptional student when it came to math.
“In my 43 years of teaching mathematics at SMC, of all the thousands of students I have had the privilege of connecting with in my classes, several stand out as especially outstanding for various reasons,” says Gibson. “But none has been more special than Fabian Salinas. During his two years at SMC, Fabian probably taught me more math than I taught him. On the rare occasion that I happened to introduce him to an idea or concept he had not thought of or been exposed to, that really made my day. I definitely want to stay in touch with Fabian and follow his destiny from here on.”
Salinas credits SMC with being an affordable and flexible option for his first two years of college.
“Going through SMC and completing my two years there definitely opened up a lot of financial opportunities that I wouldn’t have been able to get to just applying to a different college,” he says. “I’m now able to finish out my two years at Furman with a full ride.”
In addition to being a STEM whiz, Salinas plays guitar, piano, and saxophone. He participated in SMC’s talent competition, SMC Idol, in 2017. “I’d like to join some kind of music group at Furman.
Music is something I’ve thrown on the back burner, and I want to be involved in it again.”
Salinas says that he is interested in possibly becoming a math professor after receiving his bachelor’s degree, although if he adds a chemistry major, he doesn’t know how that may affect his plans. Whatever path he chooses to take, he will surely be following his passions.
“I think that continually learning is something enjoyable. I feel like you can’t really say that you’re living if you’re not gorging yourself on some sort of knowledge.”