Meet the Student Staff

Paving The Way Pre-Orientation Staff

Mallory ChengMallory Cheng
Programs & On-campus Mentorship Coordinator

Home City: Chicago, IL 
Major/Minor: Anthropology/Sociology major, Art History Visual Culture minor

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift that’s why they call it the present” -Kung Fu Panda
Favorite Food:
Sunny side up eggs with toast
Something people would find surprising about you:
I can (kinda) speak 4 languages
What are your other summer plans?
This summer, I will be interning at the Old Town School of Folk Music as their Education intern and traveling to Boston (and hopefully other places).

Simran AliSimran Ali
Program Development Coordinator

Home City: Chicago, IL
Major/Minor: Global Commerce and MENA concentration

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“You may not always have a comfortable life and you will not always be able to solve all of the world’s problems at once but don’t ever underestimate the importance you can have because history has shown us that courage can be contagious and hope can take on a life of its own.” -Michelle Obama
Favorite Food:
I love all foods spicy!
Something people would find surprising about you:
I am currently learning my fifth language and hope to learn three more in the next five years.
What are your other summer plans?
This summer, I will be interning with a case manager at a nonprofit in Chicago called RefugeeOne. My goal is to work with refugees around the world in the future, so I am really looking forward to this opportunity.

Amirah Khadeeja LouryAmirah Khadeeja Loury
Professional Development Training Coordinator

Home City: Chicago, IL
Major/Minor: Black Studies major, Chemistry minor

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept…” - Angela Y. Davis
Favorite Food:
Burger & Fries
What are your other summer plans?
Internship in DC

Robyn GaryRobyn Gary
Coordinator in Training

Home City: Chicago, IL
Major/Minor: Anthroplogy/Sociology and Black Studies with a Communication minor

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
Don’t sweat the little things because it only makes the bigger things scarier
Favorite Food:
Egg rolls
Something people would find surprising about you:
I am a pre-school teacher during the summer and have been for the last 8 years
What are your other summer plans?
Hopefully a Boys and Girls club Fellowship and working as a pre-school teacher.

Kristen AgoKristen Ago
Ambassador

Home City: Lynn, MA
Major/Minor: Psychology and Education Major, Spanish Minor

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“Be the change you wish to see in the world” - Ghandi
Favorite Food:
Rice and beans; chicken wings
Something people would find surprising about you:
90% of the time, I am usually wearing mismatched socks and I have recently developed a growing obsession with chocolate milk.
What are your other summer plans?
I will be working as a Teaching Fellow at Breakthrough Boston for a 3rd year in a row!

Baltazar Aguirre IIIBaltazar Aguirre III
Ambassador

Home City: Chicago, IL
Majors/Minor: Communication and Anthropology/Sociology majors, Educational Studies minor

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
Be kind to yourself.
Favorite Food:
Hot Wings, Jibaritos, Tacos al Pastor.
Something people would find surprising about you:
Nothing, I’m an open book.
What are your other summer plans?
Live my best, regular life and stay skinny.

Khalil BentleyKhalil Bentley
Ambassador

Home City: Chicago, IL
Major/Minor: International Studies

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“Always forward, forward always.” Pops (Luke Cage)
Favorite Food:
Chicken
Something people would find surprising about you:
I have taken Spanish, Chinese, and German classes and am decentin each of them
What are your other summer plans?
5 week study abroad program in Bath, England from June to July

Evan BrooksEvan Brooks
Ambassador

Home City: Chicago, IL
Major/Minor: Psychology major, Black Studies minor

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
Life goes on
Favorite Food:
Ramen
Something people would find surprising about you:
I’m actually 19
What are your other summer plans?
I’ll be spending my summer at northwestern university working for the center for talent development

Ming ChenMing Chen
Ambassador

Home City: Chicago,IL
Major/Minor: Data Analytics and Economics

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
What Hurts More - The Pain of Hard Work Or The Pain of Regret?
Favorite Food:
Chinese Food: Any Type
Something people would find surprising about you:
I really like to play around with children
What are your other summer plans?
I am going back to China for an internship, so I prefer to be contact by email.

Justina DadsonJustina Dadson
Ambassador

Home City: Chicago, IL
Major/Minor: Psych & Anthropology/Sociology majors, Music minor

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
In all things praise God
Favorite Food:
Jollof
Something people would find surprising about you:
I can pop my shoulder out of place
What are your other summer plans?
Working at Target

Quintana GestQuintana Gest
Ambassador

Home City: Cleveland, OH
Major/Minor: Education Major Spanish Minor

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“El ser humano propone y Dios dispone”
Favorite Food:
Pierogis with Sour Cream
Something people would find surprising about you:
I’m a First Generation College Student.
What are your other summer plans?
During the Summer I will be working with Garden of Hope in Newark, Oh, which provides the opportunity for students on parole to learn how to garden and also give back to their community.

Crystal GutierrezCrystal Gutierrez
Ambassador

Home City: Lawrence
Major/Minor: Education and Psychology Double Major

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“The stories we hold onto whether pleasant or not are what define us.”
Favorite Food:
Chocolate
Something people would find surprising about you:
I’m not traditionally creative but I can draw tattoos on paper and henna on skin really well.
What are your other summer plans?
Working as a CA for the Nobles and Greenough Math and Science Upward Bound.

Esther HernandezEsther Hernandez
Ambassador

Home City: New York, NY
Majors: Psychology, Educational Studies

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
The Soul of the World will never betray you.
Favorite Food:
The first that come to mind: veggie burgers, vegan crab cake, chipotle order, grilled vegs with kale and squash, chai seed coconut milk yogurt, popcorn, pineapple fried rice with cashew and vegetables
Something people would find surprising about you:
I was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, I’m not as formal or structured as I might seem at first, I think early afternoon naps (12-3pm) are the best naps.
What are your other summer plans?
Teacher’s Aide for early elementary/pre elementary education program & pursuing spiritual and artistic practices

Ebony MarshallEbony Marshall
Ambassador

Home City: Chicago, IL
Major/Minor: Cinema Major with a Black Studies Minor

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“Cry hard, dance harder”
Favorite Food:
Pancakes
Something people would find surprising about you:
I am working towards becoming fluent in Portuguese.
What are your other summer plans?
Research under the Summer Scholars Program and managing the Call Room for the Annual Fund during June Calling.

Sandra MondragonSandra Mondragon
Ambassador

Home City: Chicago, IL
Major/Minor: Educational Studies major, Spanish minor

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“Allow yourself to enjoy every happy moment in life.”
Favorite Food:
“Chiles rellenos” which are poblano peppers stuffed with cheese.
Something people would find surprising about you:
I’ve traveled to Thailand for a medical mission.
What are your other summer plans?
Once I return home for the summer, I am going to work at a science and arts summer camp for elementary school kids.

Tarma ObengTarma Obeng
Ambassador

Home City: Columbus, OH
Major/Minor: Biochemistry major

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.” -Martin Luther King Jr.
Favorite Food:
Salads and pizza
Something people would find surprising about you:
I was born in Verona, Italy
What are your other summer plans?
Summer classes, traveling and WORK!

Gabriela PerezGabriela Perez
Ambassador

Home City: Chicago, IL
Major/Minor: Double Major in East Asian Studies and Global Commerce

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“If you work hard enough, and try your best, you can do anything.” Erin Heatherton
Favorite Food:
Orange Juice and apple pie
Something people would find surprising about you:
I’m first gen and the youngest in my family of 4.
What are your other summer plans?
Internship: Account Co-Ordiator for PR Bespoke in Singapore

Sara Abou RashedSara Abou Rashed
Ambassador

Home City: Columbus, OH
Major/Minor: International Studies; Community Development

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win. -Ghandi
Favorite Food:
Mac n’Cheese; Tacos
Something people would find surprising about you:
That I only learned English 4 years ago
What are your other summer plans?
Working on my own one-woman show

Adriana SantiagoAdriana Santiago
Ambassador

Home City: New Rochelle, New York (Westchester County not Upstate NY)
Major/Minor: Education Major and Spanish Minor

Quote or Philosophy on Life:
You are not given more than what you cannot handle.
Favorite Food:
Pasta, meats and Dominican Food
Something people would find surprising about you:
Spanish is my first language. Both of my parents did not attend college and I was raised by only my mother whom has learning disabilities, cannot read and write but I managed to get here. I went to weight loss camp twice. I am Dominican and Puerto Rican. I have ADHD.
What are your other summer plans?
Volunteer, work as a nanny, go on new adventures and spend time with friends and family

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