National University

Migrant Worker Who Became Brain Surgeon to Speak at Sacramento Commencement

 Neurosurgeon, professor, researcher and author Alfredo Quiñones-Hinojosa, M.D. will address the graduating class of 2013 at the National University Northern California Commencement Ceremony on Sunday, April 21.

Born in a small village outside of Mexicali, Mexico, Quiñones-Hinojosa came to the United States when he was 19 years old by jumping the border fence. Speaking only Spanish, he found employment as a farmworker in California’s San Joaquin Valley and saved enough money to take English classes.

He eventually attended community college, and completed his bachelor's degree in psychology with the highest honors at University of California, Berkeley. National University’s commencement speaker went on to receive his medical degree from Harvard Medical School, where he graduated with honors. He also became a US citizen during that time.

Today Dr. Quiñones (also known as "Dr. Q") is Director of the Brain Tumor Surgery Program at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, Director of the Pituitary Surgery Program at Johns Hopkins Hospital and the Director of the Brain Tumor Stem Cell Laboratory at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.

Named as one of the 100 most influential Hispanics in 2008, Dr. Q was also selected by Popular Science magazine as one of its 6th annual "Brilliant Ten" in the search for young genius influencing the course of science. In 2011, he published his autobiography, Becoming Dr Q: My journey from migrant farm worker to brain surgeon. He is also the lead editor for the upcoming edition of Schmidek and Sweet's Operative Neurosurgical Techniques, one of the world's preeminent textbooks of neurosurgery.