Student Ambassadors

Steven Barrera
Steven Barrera
Latin American Studies with a minor in Spanish

Steven is a junior from Benson, AZ majoring in Latin American Studies with a minor in Spanish. Two of his favorite experiences beyond the classroom include studying abroad in Cuba and being involved in undergraduate honorary societies (Primus and SOPHOS). Traveling in Cuba helped Steven build communication skills, sharpen his presentation abilities, and meet people from all over the world. Honorary organizations helped him make friends and connect with other students to build a strong community and home away from home. Steven also credits his LAS major for encouraging him to think globally. In his spare time, Steven loves practicing yoga, running, and exploring the gold mine of 1960s treasures at Tucson specialty boutique stores and thrift shops.

Keely Breedlove
Keely Breedlove
Care, Health & Society with a minor in Business Administration

Keely is a sophomore from Tucson, AZ majoring in Care, Health & Society with a minor in Business Administration. Two of her favorite experiences beyond class include being involved in Students for Sustainability and teaching CPR/First Aid courses in the community. These experiences have been so meaningful because they have provided her with not only experiences, but also connections, knowledge, and pointed insight. In addition, she has also learned a significant amount about the inner-workings of organizations/businesses, as well as met many important players within those entities. In her spare time, Keely enjoys reading, cuddling with her dog, and writing daily which she says has been very therapeutic. 

Nitza Cabral
Nitza Cabral
History with a minor in Creative Writing

Nitza is a sophomore from Chico, CA majoring in History with a minor in Creative Writing. Two of her most memorable experiences during her time at the UA include completing the First Year Honors Project in which she studied youth memories of Soviet-era propaganda, and serving as a summer camp counselor for Camp Wildcat. The first year project has helped her establish meaningful relationships with faculty and learn what the steps of research can look like. Serving as a camp counselor has given her a sense of community and friendship that is unmatched in any other experience. In her spare time, Nitza likes to listen to music, watch movies, go camping, and relax in nature with good company.

Stephanie Clinch
Stephanie Clinch
Law and French

Stephanie is a sophomore from Douglas, AZ double majoring in Law and French. Some of her favorite experiences outside of class have been participating in Junior Cats, a program that helps teach children from local schools about the college experience, and volunteering with the National Collegiate Leadership Conference. These experiences have allowed her to meet new people from different stages and places in life; and connect with other university students, successful adults, and young, aspiring children. By exposing herself to these situations, she has been able to learn more about people and their backgrounds, bringing her closer to the community. In her spare time, Stephanie likes to read, binge watch TV shows, and do anything that can help her learn more about people and give her a glimpse into their lives to see the world from a different perspective.

Alyssa Dimacali
Communication with a minor in Sociology

Alyssa is a senior from Rancho Palos Verdes, California majoring in Communication and minoring in Sociology. Some of her favorite experiences outside of the classroom include being a member of the Kappa Kappa Gamma Sorority and serving as treasurer of the Lambda Pi Eta Communication Honors Society. These experiences have allowed her to meet so many other amazing people that continuously remind her why she chose to attend the University of Arizona. On her free time, you could find Alyssa cooking, working out, obsessing over her dogs, or hanging out with friends.

Halle Dirks
Halle Dirks
Creative Writing and Japanese

Halle is a junior from Gilbert, AZ double majoring in Creative Writing and Japanese. Some of her most memorable experiences so far include studying abroad in Japan, working as a copy-editor for the Rain Shadow Review (a collection of essays written by inmates at the Tucson prison), and being a part of the Persona committee for UA’s undergraduate literary journal. Why were these experiences so meaningful? “Why” is a rather difficult question for broad experiences like these. It could be the friendships she made. It could be the opportunity for work. It could be traveling across the sea and seeing sights America doesn’t have. It could be the excitement of trying new things. It could be that they were formative in a way she has yet to fully comprehend. So, “why”? All of those, she thinks, and possibly more. In her spare time Halle enjoys listening to music and singing along too loudly.

Emma Encinas
PPEL with a minor in Classics

Emma is majoring in the Advanced Standing PPEL program and minoring in Classics with an emphasis in Classical Civilizations. She has worked with the University’s disability resource center (DRC), Emma is the vice president of Feminist Campus and is enrolled in the college of social and behavioral science’s speech and debate internship. She is also a member of the University of Arizona’s chapter of the National Society of Leadership and Success and a member of the University’s chapter of Sigma Alpha Lambda, a National Leadership and Honors Organization. Emma is currently working as a deputy field organizer for Kirkpatrick for Congress, as a staging location director for the democratic-party and as a campus organizer for the Feminist Majority’s college-voter campaign. After she graduate, She plans to attend law school and pursue a career in criminal-defense, effecting both social and political change.

Samantha Grim
Political Science with a minor in Economics
Daniel Hartman-Strawn
Daniel Hartman-Strawn
American Indian Studies and Law

Daniel is a junior from Tucson, AZ double majoring in American Indian Studies and Law. One of his most meaningful experiences outside of class was living on the Pine Ridge Reservation while working for a nonprofit organization. This experience taught him a tremendous amount about community outreach, program development, and what it means to experience a new culture. He was also exposed to some of the legal and social justice issues that exist on many reservations, which inspired his career goals. When he has free time, Daniel is usually outside rafting, mountain biking, snowboarding or anything else that involves nature. He is also a guide for Outdoor Recreation and believes Arizona is home to so many beautiful places.

Sergey Harutyunyants

Sergey was born in Mineralnye Vody, a little town in Stavropol Krai, Russia, on May 19th, 1992. When he was one year old his family moved to Yerevan, Armenia. Since then he lived in Armenia till coming to the US. He graduated from Koryun High School in 2009 and completed 2 years in European Regional Educational Academy as International Relations major. Sergey completed both with highest honors and 4.0 GPA. He came to the US in January, 2014. In May 2017 he graduated from Pima CC with Associate of Liberal Arts and Honors Certificate also with highest honors. Currently he is a senior at University of Arizona with double major in Political Science and Law. After graduation, he wants to go to an Ivy League law school.

Lynzie Hudson
Care, Health and Society with a minor in Family Studies and Human Development

Lynzie is in her third year here at the University of Arizona. She loves going to school here. She is from Northern California majoring in Care, Health and Society with a minor and Family Studies and Human Development. Outside of the classroom her favorite experiences are being a part of the LifeSTEP internship mentoring youth and volunteering with Elgie M. Batteau Honors Society. These experiences have helped her grow as a person and gain different perspectives of what life can be; and connect with fellow students who also are doing the same. In her spare time, Lynzie likes to go on hikes, hang out with friends while watching Netflix movies and goes to Disneyland on her longer weekends. As a first semester ambassador she is excited for everything that she will have the opportunity to be a part of and very optimistic of everything to come with this new journey.

Hannah Isaac
Hannah Isaac
English, Creative Writing, and French

Hannah is a junior from Phoenix, AZ triple majoring in English, Creative Writing, and French. A few of her favorite experiences beyond the classroom include spending over 750 hours as an AmeriCorps volunteer at the Tucson Festival of Books and hosting her own radio show as a DJ on KAMP Student Radio (the show is bilingual like her). The festival has allowed her to work with other volunteers to organize an event that so many people look forward to, and it’s very cool to be surrounded by people who love to read, and it’s even cooler to raise money so that those who cannot read can learn to. It’s also really fun to speak French on the radio. La prochaine est une de mes chansons préférées, donc, j'espère que vous aimez ça! For fun, Hannah enjoys cooking, writing, singing, and taking naps. She is currently working on a young adult fantasy manuscript for a book she hopes to one day publish.

Talya Jaffe
Talya Jaffe
Philosophy and Neuroscience

Talya is a junior from New Mexico double majoring in Philosophy and Neuroscience. Two of her favorite experiences beyond the classroom include volunteering at Therapeutic Riding of Tucson (TROT), an organization that provides horseback riding therapy to disabled people, and being a member of the UA Student Engagement Council (SEC). These opportunities have been meaningful to Talya because she really values getting to escape the chaos of student life, especially when that escape involves a beautiful horse ranch and getting to help other people. SEC has taught her many valuable skills, including organizing, budgeting and event-planning while meeting really interesting people. In her spare time, Talya likes to play soccer, tennis, read poetry, and take naps in her hammock.

Jamin Lee
Jamin Lee
Public Management/Policy and Physics

Jamin is a junior from Seoul, South Korea double majoring in Public Management/Policy and Physics. Two of her most meaningful experiences while in college include conducting undergraduate research and serving as a peer mentor for the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. These experiences were valuable because they have allowed her to meet people who are passionate about their work and given her the opportunity to practice communication and teamwork skills. Jamin did not know anyone in Tucson before coming to the UA, but being involved has helped her form valuable relationships on campus. Outside of class, Jamin enjoys eating good food (especially brunch) and spending time with her friends.

Francy Luna
Francy Luna
Political Science and Law

Francy is a senior from Tucson, AZ double majoring in Political Science and Law. One of her favorite activities beyond class is working with the Pima Animal Care Center. She has also spent three years serving the local community as a college mentor through Goodwill Tucson, and she enjoys sharing the value of higher education with high school students as a student recruiter. Francy is committed to service, especially for individuals who are vulnerable, and she seeks opportunities where she can make the greatest impact in someone else’s life. Volunteering for numerous organizations and working at the UA has allowed her to do serve several different vulnerable groups. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, painting, gardening, hiking, biking, snowboarding, and traveling.

Toni Marcheva
Toni Marcheva
Philosophy, Politics, Economics & Law (PPEL), Economics, and Spanish/Portuguese with a minor in English

Toni is a sophomore from Mesa, AZ triple majoring in Philosophy, Politics, Economics & Law (PPEL), Economics, and Spanish/Portuguese with a minor in English. Three of her favorite involvement experiences so far include her internship at Senator Jeff Flake’s office in Tucson, being the service chair in Historic Lane’s hall council, and writing for the UA’s student-run newspaper: The Daily Wildcat. Everything she has been involved in has allowed her to improve her skills while benefitting others around her in practical ways. Through being the leader of the service committee in hall council, she gained leadership and organizational skills by giving students who wanted to help the Tucson community the ability to do so. All of these engagement opportunities had a tangible purpose and outcome, and that made them incredibly meaningful. In her spare time, Toni loves rollerblading, writing in her journal, playing jazz music and trying new things.

Jacob McGill
Jacob McGill
Economics with a minor in Math

Jacob is a sophomore from Buckeye, AZ majoring in Economics with a minor in Math. Some of his favorite experiences at the UA include participating in UA Mock Trial and being involved in Freshman Class Council through the UA Student Government. These activities have helped him make new friends, help his fellow students, and Mock Trial has been a challenging yet fun way to learn critical thinking and public speaking skills. In his spare time, Jacob enjoys traveling (he is excited to spend 4 weeks in Cuba over the summer), hiking, reading, movies and hanging out with friends.

Nataly Gruender
Nataly Gruender
Creative Writing and English

Nataly is a sophomore from Fountain Hills, AZ double majoring in Creative Writing and English. Two of her most memorable experiences during her time as an undergraduate include being involved with Persona, UA’s student-driven undergraduate literary magazine and completing the First Year Honors Project in which she explored the relevance of ancient Greek Mythology to modern society. These opportunities have allowed her to gain experience in something similar to the kind of work and career she hopes to have in the future. The First Year Project also helped her learn how to manage her time in order to complete a semester long project on schedule. In her spare time, Nataly enjoys reading fantasy and supernatural fiction books, writing her own stories, swimming, and hanging out with friends.

Heather Newberry
Environmental Studies and Political Science with a minor in German Language Studies and Philosophy

Heather Newberry is a junior here at the University of Arizona. She is a double major in Political Science and Environmental Studies and a double minor in Philosophy and German. Heather hopes to go to law school after she graduates and go into environmental law. She loves photography, sour gummy worms, and everything breakfast.

Allie Niegocki
Linguistics and French

Allie is a sophomore from Tucson, AZ double majoring in Linguistics and French. One of her most memorable experiences at the UA so far was serving as a counselor for Camp Wildcat, a student run club that allows undergraduates to mentor middle school students in the community. This experience has helped her make an impact in the local community while teaching young people about higher education. In her spare time, Allie enjoys reading, playing guitar and piano, and Frisbee.

Miranda Padilla
Communication and Information Science

Miranda is a Junior from Anthem, Arizona majoring in both Communications and Information Science and E society. She chose to become an SBS ambassador to expand her connections during her time here at the u of a. She loves having the opportunity to meet more of her peers as well as so many future students. Along with the SBS ambassador program, Miranda is involved in greek life, which has been a completely irreplaceable experience that has given her best friends for life. Some of her favorite things to do are binge watch Netflix shows with her roommates and find cool places to eat here in Tucson.

Lexie Palmer
Arabic and Middle Eastern and North African Studies

Lexie is a junior at the University of Arizona, and is from Tucson, Arizona. They double-major with Arabic and Middle Eastern and North African Studies, both majors being in the college of SBS. One of Lexie’s favorite memories was studying abroad during the summer of 2018 in Amman, Jordan. During their time in Jordan, they studied Arabic, and visited Petra, the Dead Sea, and Aqaba and the Red Sea. They are very passionate about learning languages and different cultures, which is why they chose to study Arabic and MENAS. Lexie is also involved in Greek life, and served on the United Sorority and Fraternity Council executive board as VP of Membership and Public Relations. Lexie loves to meet new people, and is very excited to be an SBS Ambassador for the 2018-2019 school year.

Amber Parkins-Massey
Information Science & E-Society with a minor in Spanish

Amber is an active honors student majoring in Information Science & E-Society and minoring in Spanish. She is very active in the community and stand still as an avid volunteer at Bens Bells, as well as being a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Incorporated. On campus, Amber prides herself on being a Residential Assistant who strives to provide students with the tools necessary for success. As the new Director of Training and Development for the Coalition of Black Organizations COBO, she also assists the current leaders of black organizations with fulfilling their roles efficiently. Her hobbies consists of hiking, reading, and in home spa days with my closest friends.

Edwin Perez
Edwin Perez
Latin American Studies with minors in Criminal Justice and Spanish

Edwin is a junior from Tucson, AZ majoring in Latin American Studies with minors in Criminal Justice and Spanish. One of his favorite experiences in college was working as a promotional filmmaker for educational and non-profit organizations. This experience has been a valuable opportunity to work with individuals from many different backgrounds, and Edwin always enjoys the collective feeling of artistic accomplishment at the end of a project. In his spare time, Edwin likes to spend time with his family, travel, and read about contemporary issues facing our society.

Alexander Relich
Political Science

Alexander is a junior from Tucson, AZ majoring in Political Science. Two of his favorite experiences beyond the classroom include participating on the UA Mock Trial team and serving his college as an ASUA Student Senator. These experiences have been meaningful to him because they provide more real world experience in the fields that Alexander is interested in. It takes hands on training to learn how to take the book knowledge you have and apply it towards a given career. In mock trial, he learned how to refine his written and verbal communication towards a distinctly legal audience, and he also had the opportunity to use these skills in numerous competitions. In student government, Alexander has observed the legislative process first hand and seen the values of integrity and compromise at work. In his spare time, Alexander enjoys reading, studying, and playing computer games.

Annet Rich
Annet Rich
Philosophy with a minor in Government and Public Policy

Annet is a sophomore from Tucson, AZ majoring in Philosophy with a minor in Government and Public Policy. Two of her favorite experiences beyond the classroom include being a member of the Blue Chip Leadership Program and working at the World of Words in the College of Education. These experiences have been meaningful because they have allowed her to learn more about herself, meet new people, and expand her knowledge. Working at Worlds of Words has prepared Annet to interact and work with others to reach a common goal, while Blue Chip has further developed important leadership skills. In her spare time, Annet likes to spend time with family and friends, participate in community service work in the local community, and cook.

Kylie Salyards
Kylie Salyards
Communication

Kylie is a sophomore from Hopkinton, MA majoring in Communication. Some of her most memorable experiences outside of class include getting involved in Greek Life and joining a student honorary. These experiences have provided her with a peer group of close friends who she considers a “family away from home.” They have encouraged her to work harder, take greater interest in her learning and live her college life to its fullest potential. In her spare time, Kylie enjoys exploring Tucson with friends and spending time at the pool (especially in the winter months as the weather back home in Massachusetts does not allow for that regularly). As an out of state student, she loves to see all that Tucson’s unique landscape and culture have to offer.

Julia Schimmel
Julia Schimmel
Political Science and Middle Eastern and North African Studies

Julia is a sophomore from Phoenix, AZ double majoring in Political Science and Middle Eastern and North African Studies. Two of her most valuable experiences beyond the classroom include participating in UA Mock Trial and interning for U.S. Senator John McCain. Mock Trial has been such a valuable experience because outside of learning how to publically speak and courtroom etiquette; she has created a close bond with many of her teammates. Her political internship helped her learn how to adapt and work professionally with people who are not like-minded. In her spare time, Julia loves to travel. 

Marvin Smith III
Criminal Justice and Public Management & Policy

Marvin Smith is from San Diego, California and is currently a Senior double majoring in Criminal Justice Studies and Public Management and Policy. His favorite experience outside of the classroom has been interning with the University of Arizona police department, which has provided him with a great deal of insight into how a police department is run and the responsibilities of the police department. This experience allowed him to look into law enforcement and see the daily duties police officers are responsible for which allowed him to understand that police officers have a great deal of responsibility which include being a leader and ensuring fairness and justice. He also gained valuable leadership and problem-solving experience. Marvin likes to watch and play sports, and enjoys listening to music and trying to new food places.

Cat Solewin
Cat Solewin
English and Creative Writing

Cat is a junior from Tucson, AZ double majoring in English and Creative Writing. Some of her most memorable experiences in college include helping to develop the UA Prison Writing Program with the Department of English and being involved in events as an SBS Ambassador. The prison writing program expanded her previously narrow views on the reasons why people are incarcerated and how they are treated behind bars. Participating in college events has given her so many opportunities to network and foster professional and academic relationships that she would have never had otherwise. In her spare time, Cat likes to write poetry, essays and fiction, and carries a notebook around to jot down thoughts whenever they come. She is also more than a little obsessed with dogs including her own box/pitbull mix named Ophelia. Yes, like Hamlet.

Alex Surmacz
Political Science with a minor in Business Administration, Geography, Economics

Alex is a junior from Las Vegas, Nevada. Two of his most valuable experiences during his time at the University of Arizona are going to events with world renowned thinker Noam Chomsky and studying abroad in Switzerland. The access to individuals and organizations at the forefront of their fields trying to solve some of the world's’ most pressing issues is unique to the University of Arizona. These highly impactful experiences and interactions have inspired Alex to become involved with a global NGO, Amnesty International to work on human rights issues. In his freetime, Alex enjoys cooking, reading, hiking, and hanging out with friends.

Yolanda Terrazas-Franco
Information Science and Technology with a minor in E-Society and Spanish

Yolanda is a sophomore from Tucson, AZ majoring in Information Science and Technology with minors in Spanish and e-Society. Some of her favorite experiences outside of class have been being a sunday school teacher at her church, an intern with the New Start+ Summer Program, participant in Blue Chip, and Peer Advising incoming freshmen during the summer. Being a part of all of these programs has allowed her to make so many connections, given her friends of a lifetime, and impact the lives of others. These experiences have helped her become the person she is today, and developed her social, communication, and time management skills. In her spare time, Yolanda likes to watch movies, spend time with friends, eat good food, and nap.

Alexa Thorell
Alexa Thorell
Criminal Justice with a minor in Sociology

Alexandra is a junior from Scottsdale, AZ majoring in Criminal Justice with a minor in Sociology. Beyond the classroom, some of her favorite campus activities at the UA have been being a part of Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority, interning for the Wildcat Club in McKale Center, and participating in Intramural Sports on campus (softball & volleyball). These opportunities have helped shape her experience since coming to college and being active on campus. Being involved on campus has broadened her horizons and helped her branch out to meet all kinds of people in the university community. In her spare time, Alexa enjoys golfing, listening to music, and spending time with her friends and family.  

Brianna Velador
Law with a minor in Spanish

Brianna Velador is a sophomore from Tucson, Arizona who is studying Law and Spanish. One of her most memorable experiences at the U of A include being part of the Destino Movement and Cru at the U of A. She also volunteers around Tucson, including at the Awana Children’s Program where she is the secretary, her church, and at the Sunnyside Children’s Garden. Brianna enjoys helping others in her community, and hopes to continue this path through a career in the public administration sector. Her hope is to one day work for the federal government in Washington DC. In her free time, Brianna enjoys cooking Mexican food, baking chocolate chip cookies, hiking with her dog at Saguaro National Park, and listening to various genres of music that is in Spanish.

Alexis Whitaker
Alexis Whitaker
Journalism with minors in Communication and eSociety

Alexis is a junior from Los Angeles, CA majoring in Journalism with minors in Communication and eSociety. Some of her favorite experiences outside of class include working as an assistant marketing manager for the student newspaper and interning with a public relations firm in Beverly Hills. These opportunities have been meaningful because they have helped her learn, network, and gain experience in her career path. In her spare time, Alexis enjoys spending time with friends, going out to eat, and creating memories that will last forever. 

Richaunti Williams
Linguistics with a minor in French

Richaunti is from (almost always) sunny California! He is currently in the class of 2021 at the University of Arizona, majoring in Linguistics, with a minor in French. Richaunti chose Linguistics because he loves to learn and study different languages. Including their origins, phonetic makeup, etc and the reasoning for all of it. He is also very intrigued by how the brain interprets sounds and sentences. After graduating, he plans on going into work in the intelligence field of the government. His ultimate career goal is to be a Forensic Linguist for the FBI. When he is not buried in his textbook, he is busy being an SBS Ambassador, a proud member of Gamma Phi Beta Sorority, or taking photos for Zonazoo Crew.

Taylor Yamanaka
Taylor Yamanaka
Philosophy with minors in Economics and Mandarin

Taylor is a sophomore from Tucson, AZ majoring in Philosophy with minors in Economics and Mandarin. During his time at the UA he has enjoyed serving as a summer camp counselor with Camp Wildcat, a student run non-profit that take local elementary school children on free camping trips around AZ, and being a student DJ with KAMP student radio. Both experiences have been incredibly meaningful to him. Camp Wildcat has given him the opportunity to serve as a leader for local kids and see the first-hand impact of mentorship, while KAMP has helped him meet new people while sharing his love of music with a wider audience. In his spare time, Taylor loves to cook and one of his dreams is to become a chef because he loves every single aspect of the cooking experience.

Ryan Zhao
Geography and Information Science

Ryan is an international student from Tianjin, China. He is currently studying Geography & Information Science and Technology as a junior student at the SBS college. Ryan is also a student recruiter at the office of admissions, giving tours to new students to let them get familiar with our campus. At the same time, he is also doing research with his professors in Remote Sensing and GIS fields. Ryan's best experience was playing drums for his band at the international talent show in his freshman year.