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Peer Advisors

Peer advisors help students declare majors and make connections with faculty, review research opportunities, and explore study abroad and options for independent and interdisciplinary study.

For general questions about the peer advising program, or to be referred to a peer advisor, email

Peer Advisors 2020-2021

Audio and Music Engineering

Tianwei JiangTianwei Jiang 

Major: audio music engineering and applied mathematics
Internship(s): Datatom Inc., 2020 summer, Frontend Development Engineer, focusing on developing user interfaces and web pages for Artificial Intelligence products; Listen to Stone Recording Studio, 2019 and 2020 summer, mixing and recording assistant, recording and mixing albums under the guidance of chief director
Activities: UR Badminton club, Vice President, 2019-present, love to learn and play all kinds of musical instruments (strings, keyboards, drums)

Molly Robins

Molly Robins

Major: audio and music engineering
Minor: music
Research experience: Xerox Engineering Research Fellow, summer 2019
Internship(s): WXXI Audio Engineering Internship, summer 2018
Activities: WRUR (co-general manager and DJ)

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S. EdaraSrilatha Edara

Major: biology
Minor: business and psychology
Research experience: research assistant in Dr. Whasil Lee’s lab on research related to ACL injury; Emergency Department Research Associate (EDRA) at Strong Memorial Hospital’s Emergency Department
Activities: TA: CHEM 203 and CHEM 204; Resident Advisor; FOS volunteer; Tutor students through RSA; Students Helping Honduras (SHH)

Syed Arsalan Ghani

Syed Arsalan Ghani

Major: computational biology (and psychology)
Cluster: Islam
Research experience: Chen Lab: Utilizing statistical tests to determine strength of phenotypic selection on an undisturbed and a suburban population of Florida Scrub-Jay through phenotypic traits and fitness components, Social Cognitive Development Lab: Utilizing open-source coding software to develop questionnaires in understanding children’s economic stress and moral concerns: and subsequently drafting abstracts, research posters and presenting them
Activities: BIO 198p (genetics) lab TA, head TA for STT 212, workshop and lab TA for CSC 161; associate justice on the All-Campus Judicial Council serving on the Board on Academic Honesty; RA for Riverview/Brooks; ex-member and previous e-board member for Phi Kappa Tau fraternity

Paula Valeria GuerraPaula Valeria Guerra

Major: biochemistry
Take Five (2020-2021): Italian Language and Culture
Research:Ghaemmaghami Lab (summer 2018-present) DeKiewiet Fellow (2019), overall Research focused on the effects of oxidation on cells and the role of methionine when oxidation occurs
Study abroad experience: IES Milan fall semester 2019, assistant at Immigration Office, Comune di Milano (service learning)
Activities: first-year RA, hospice care, lifetime care, volunteer (Spanish speaking), workshop leader and CETL tutor: BIO 110 and BIO 111, Kearns Scholar

John Roy LozadaJohn Roy Lozada

Major: molecular genetics
Minor: business
Study abroad: Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, fall 2019
Research experience: URMC, Kim Lab (deKiewiet Scholar; since fall 2018): studying the metabolic and migration dynamics of CAR T-cells and the differentiation of myeloid-derived suppressor cells; Li Lab (since summer 2020): studying the RNA regulatory processes underlying testicular germ cell tumor initiation and progression; Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Hahn Lab (summers 2018 and 2019): studied alternative RNA translation mechanisms in cancers; Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (2016-2017): studied the genomic underpinnings of rare cancer subtypes
Activities: Journal of Undergraduate Research editor-in-chief; Filipino American Students' Association president; Friends of Strong volunteer; previously a TA for STT 212

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Biomedical Engineering

Anna CookAnna Cook

Major: biomedical engineering
Study abroad: Christchurch, NZ in fall 2019
Activities: Varsity Women’s Swimming and Diving Team Captain
Shadowing experience: Limb Lab (for prosthetics and orthotics) in Minnesota

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Brain and Cognitive Sciences

Lizbeth DeLaRosaLizbeth De La Rosa

Major: brain and cognitive sciences
Minor: American Sign Language
Research experience: Nedergaard Lab at URMC and Smoking Research Program at URMC
Internship(s): SMD URMC Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship
Activities: First-year resident advisor, BIO 110 lab TA, MERT member

Grace MessinaGrace Messina

Majors: brain and cognitive sciences, psychology
Research experience: RA for Project HOPE
Activities: varsity women’s track and field team; TA for PSY 161: Social Psychology and Individual Differences (spring 2020); first-year orientation volunteer (2018, 2019)

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Yuhan Chen
Yuhan Chen

Major: business analytics (BS), data science (BA)
Internship(s): Indirect Tax department at PwC (sophomore year); Project Management and Process Improvement internship AT Excellus Blue Cross Blue Shield (junior year, cancelled because of Covid-19); Tencent’s Public Affairs department in Shanghai
Activities: Sigma Psi Zeta sorority; CETL tutor; TA for CIS 191 and CHI 101

Masashi KawabataMasashi Kawabata

Major: business, finance track
Minor: computer science
Internship(s): finance and data analytics for Bunge North America
Activities: watching baseball and playing Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout

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Chemical Engineering

Allisa DerubertisAllisa Derubertis

Major: chemical engineering
Minor: clinical psychology
Activities: varsity volleyball

Ahmad El GazzarAhmad El Gazzar

Major: chemical engineering
Minor: materials science
Activities: research/teaching assistant in the Department of Chemical Engineering; American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE); students' government; CETL tutor; first-year fellow 2018-2019

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Sarah CraigSarah Craig

Major: chemistry
Minors: chemical engineering, psychology, mathematics
Research experience: spring 2019-fall 2019: organic synthesis, Boeckman lab in collaboration with Anthamatten lab- preparation of experimental polysubstituted alkyl-imidazoles for use in ion transport membranes; fall 2019-current: Organometallics, Kennedy lab- design and synthesis of Co and Ni complexes employing chemically non-innocent ligands for selective bond activation
Activities: TA for CHM 131 lab (summer 2019), CHM 132 (summer 2019), CHM 173 (2018), CHM 207 (2019), CHM 210 (2019, 2020), CHM 231 (2020); President of Off-Broadway On Campus (OBOC); Vice President of Undergraduate Chemistry Council (UCC)

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Computer Science

Abhisesh AcharyaAbhisesh Acharya

Major: computer science
Minor: organizational psychology
Work experience: applications engineer intern at Medidata Solutions, data scientist (NLP) at Strong Memorial Hospital, backend software engineer at Art House Galleria, workshop superleader in the Department of Computer Science
Activities: Computer Science Undergraduate Council, Residence Hall Association
Interests: I like solving problems and enjoy topics on the nature of reality, love, and consciousness.

Saad AhmadSaad Ahmad

Majors: computer science and business
Cluster: Arabic
Research experience: ROC-HCI Group: working as a data analyst for the development of AI4K12 system to design learning activities that aim to provide accessible and meaningful learning and teaching experiences of Artificial Intelligence (AI) for learners and educators with diverse backgrounds
Internship(s): Stem-Away Machine Learning Team: collaboratively designed and programmed an efficient website recommender system by using Natural Language Processing and Data Mining techniques for accurate classifications and recommendations for the end users
Activities: teaching assistant (TA) and workshop leader for computer science, data science, and calculus courses; upperclass resident advisor (RA) for O’Brien Hall; CETL tutor for computer science, business, statistics, and mathematics courses

Anna ZimmermanAnna Zimmerman

Major: computer science
Minor: psychology
Internship(s): global technology intern at Nike (summer 2020), mobile development intern at Crafty (summer 2019), junior software engineering contractor at AbbVie (summer 2018)
Activities: president of Women in Computing; lab TA for CSC 172 (2018-2019); workshop leader for CSC 171 and 172 (2019-2020); GHC 2020 peer leader; co-head of logistics for DandyHacks; president of Cinema Group
Social; chair of Womxn's Club Ultimate; member of UR Splash

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Catherine RamseyCatherine Ramsey

Majors: dance, political science, and African and African-American studies
Internship(s): Krish Vignarajah for Maryland Governor campaign (summer 2018), arts educator in the Washington DC area (summer 2018 and 2019), arts enrichment operations coordinator for Lifting Lives Nonprofit in DC (summer 2020)
Activities: Mock Trial (president and publicity chair), Undergrad Council for the Program of Dance and Movement (publicity chair), choreography for the Rochester Decarceration Research Initiative, Moving Memories partnership with RiverEdge Manor Senior Assisted Living, DC dog walker

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Data Science

Anindini Singh

Anindini Singh

Majors: data science and financial economics
Minor: mathematics
Internship(s): machine learning intern at STEM Away; designed a web scraping program to automate the extraction of information from posts in a discussion forum; implemented BERT models used in natural language processing tasks for their ability to not only understand syntax, but also imbibe the context from words and additionally, gained familiarity with Amazon Web Services (AWS) and designed a working product in the same
Research: data analyst at the Institute of Macroeconomics, University of Leibniz, Germany—analysed data pertaining to the influence of roadways in the emergence of difference crafts and occupations across Europe, designed an algorithm using regular expressions, commonly used to define search patterns, to classify said occupations
Activities: workshop leader: CSC 171, 172; TA: Eco 108, CSC 171; member, The Opposite of People (TOOP); actor, The Matter of J. Robert Oppenheimer, Todd Union

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Digital Media Studies

Alex ChaseAlex Chase

Majors: digital media studies and political science
Internship(s): As the Peer Advisor for the Digital Media Studies Program, he values the opportunity to help his DMS peers on both an academic and personal level. Alex believes that the interdisciplinary nature of DMS makes it a versatile field of study which offers an outlet for applied creativity. He also appreciates the program's flexibility which ensures that a student can specialize in subjects unique to them, and thus no two DMS journeys are exactly alike. 
Activities: Playing guitar and performing in No Jackets Required, training in capoeira, and being a wild and crazy guy

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Earth and Environmental Sciences

Sarah GravleeSarah Gravlee

Major: geological sciences
Minor: sustainability
Research experience: Early Earth and Experimental Geochemistry Lab
Study abroad: spring 2019 Granada, Spain
Activities: fabrication and environmental research team member for UR Robotics MATE

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Hannah JaquesHannah Jaques

Major: history and bioethics
Minor: philosophy
Research experience: currently working on a research project about the United States’s response to epidemics
Activities: avid reader, runner and writer

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International Relations

Jesse KlauberJesse Klauber

Majors: international relations (LG-Russian) and history
Internship(s): cancelled due to Coronavirus
Research experience: SCUSA West Point (2019), 18th Century US Protestantism (Professor Greenwood), Conflict Studies Empirical Research and Analytics (Professor Goemans)
Study abroad: cancelled due to Coronavirus
Activities: Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity; UR College Republicans; PSC 202 TA; Undergraduate History Council

Placeholder image of a dandelion.Donghui Li

Major: international relations and business
Research experience: senior honors program (fall 2019-spring 2020), Department of Political Science
Activities: TA for GBA 220 (fall 2019-spring 2020)

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Cameron GreenopCameron Greenop

Majors: linguistics and classics
Research experience: summer 2019: worked in the Deptartment of Linguistics Phonetics Lab annotating field recordings of several Bantu languages; summer 2019-present: working with Professor Maya Abtahian to create an IPA sketch of the Garifuna language; currently working on an independent research project examining style-shifting in the speech of transgender men
Activities: workshop leader for LIN 110 (spring 2020); Pride Network (secretary); Alpha Phi Omega (vice president of membership, previously secretary/fundraising chair); barista at Starbucks

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Elana FineElana Fine

Major: applied mathematics (pre-med)

Ben Kuehnert
Ben Kuehnert

Major: mathematics, computer science
Research experience: math REU at Boise State University (summer 2019): Research into SIDH, a post-quantum cryptography protocol; research assistant in Professor Schubert's lab: writing software to enable NLP programs to efficiently process temporal information
Internship(s): software engineering at Google (summer 2020): Development of the Common Lisp Protobuf library
Activities: TA for CSC 173 and CSC 282

Eugene PyoEugene Pyo

Major: mathematics-statistics
Minors: business, computer science
Research Experience: "Drone Image Mapping" in the Multidisciplinary Nano and Microsystems Lab at the University of Florida, Gainesville, FL during Summer 2018
Internship(s): accounting and IT departmental research at Shine Electronics Co., Inc.
Activities: R.I.C.E. Dance Crew, UR Quantitative Finance Club

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Mechanical Engineering

Eli BurkEli Burk

Major: mechanical engineering
Minor: psychology as a social science
Extracurriculars: American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Alpha Epsilon Pi, Men’s Club Ultimate
Interests: renewable energy, heat transfer, design, hiking, running, cooking

Christina KerstenChristina Kersten

Major: mechanical engineering
Internship(s): WindAid (summer 2018); Triumph Aerostructures (summer 2019); L3Harris (summer 2020)
Activities: MechE TA; Habitat for Humanity

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Sarah GrabowskiSarah Grabowski

Major: optical engineering
Minor: French
Study abroad: Sydney, Australia, fall 2019
Internship(s): Image Quality Lab intern for Optikos Corporation (summer 2018, 2019), Zemax Student Partnerships Initiative (summer 2020)
Activities: UR Club Water Polo; UR Chamber Orchestra principal bassist; OPT 211 TA (spring 2019, 2020); intramural volleyball

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Physics and Astronomy

Chad PopikChad Popik

Major: physics and astronomy
Minors: mathematics, music
Research experience: working on projects in large-scale cosmology as a part of the DESI (Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument) collaboration, specifically studying BAO (Baryon Acoustic Oscillation) physics through developing algorithms and methods of data analysis to extract cosmological information from galaxy redshift surveys (Professor Regina Demina, fall 2018-present)
Internship(s): REU at University of Rochester (summer 2019).
Activities: Society of Physics Students (business manager), teaching intern (MTH 281, AST 142), musicology and orchestration, Astronomy Club

Yue WangYue Wang

Majors: physics BS, honors mathematics BS
Research experience: LZ Collaboration Summer 2018 - now: Install and perform quality assurance for electronics for LZ dark matter detector; Calibrated and improved a NaI detector; Simulated supernova neutrino in LZ; Working with Prof. Wolfs. SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory Summer 2019: Uncover charge density waves from a non-standard background; SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory Summer 2020: Gaussian process for accelerator anomaly detection.
Internship(s): Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS), SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Summer 2019 and Summer 2020
Activities: University of Rochester Chamber Orchestra; Society of Physics Students; Society of Women in Astronomy and Physics; Society of Undergraduate Mathematics Students; Women in Computing; Ballet Performance Group

Amanda WassermanAmanda Wasserman

Major: physics and astronomy
Minor: mathematics
Research experience: research with Professor Segev BenZvi on the Dark Energy Spectroscopic instrument since spring 2018—training a convolutional neural network that will identify supernovae from a large catalog of galactic spectra
Internship(s): summer 2018 - PREP: instructed the Pre College Experience in Physics for high school girls; summer 2019 - Columbia University REU: research abroad in L'Aquilla, Italy with the XENONnT dark matter particle detector working on the purification of the liquid xenon
Activities: Society of Physics Students (secretary, president, social chair), Society of Women in Astronomy and Physics (business manager), University of Rochester Symphony Orchestra, Archery Club, TA for a variety of introductory physics and astronomy courses

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Ayse Toprakkiran

Selin Toprakkiran

Major: Psychology
Minors: Statistics and International Relations
Research experience: Social Stress Laboratory at the UofR (PI: Jeremy Jamieson, PhD); Independent Study on Intergroup Prejudice Between Domestic and International Students at the UofR; PROJECT Flight Behavioral Coding Intern at the UofR (PI: Mellissa Sturge-Apple, PhD); Achievement and Social Motivation Laboratory at the UofR (PI: Andrew Elliot, PhD); Applied Memory Laboratory at Koc University (PI: Sami Gulgoz)
Activities: Teaching Assistant: PSY 101 (fall 2019), PSY 181 (fall 2020); Volunteer for Gonullu Hizmetler Dernegi (Istanbul, Turkey); SALSEROS Tango Club; East Pen Pal Program; Gamma Phi Beta

Kayla Zilke

Kayla Zilke

Major: Psychology
Minors: Business and Environmental Humanities
Study abroad: DIS Copenhagen (Spring 2020)
Research experience: Currently working on my honors thesis research of work engagement with Dr. Chris Niemiec at UofR; research assistant to Dr. Chris Niemiec; presented a poster at the 2019 Self-Determination Theory Conference in the Netherlands
Activities: GreenSpace, quidditch team, Medallion Leadership Society, Student Association of Vegan and Vegetarian Youth, blogger for the Office of Admissions

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Public Health-Related Programs

Hannah JaquesHannah Jaques

Major: history and bioethics
Minor: philosophy
Research experience: currently working on a research project about the United States’s response to epidemics
Activities: avid reader, runner and writer

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Religion and Classics

Lia Nelson

Lia Nelson

Major: classics
Minor: dance
Study abroad: Athens, Greece (spring 2019) and Rome, Italy (summer 2019)
Research experience: Humanities Research and Innovation Grant (HRIG) in Latin and Ancient Greek history
Activities: Ballet Performance Group (vice president), Strong Jugglers, Language Center tutor (Latin and ancient Greek)

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Edith LeeEdith Lee

Major: statistics
Research experience: Undergraduates Summer Institute of Statistics (RUSIS) at Oregon State University under Professor Javier Rojo (Summer 2019); Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) in Markov Chains at University of Connecticut under Professor Iddo Ben-Ari (Summer 2020)
Activities: Habitat for Humanity, Alpha Phi Omega - Co-ed Service Fraternity
Community Service Network, Society for Undergraduate Statistics Students

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