Orientation & New Student Programs Staff

Meet your First-Year Mentors! 

The First-Year Mentor (FY Mentor) provides an opportunity for upper-level students to help new students experience a positive transition to college. The FY Mentors will be assigned to one First-Year Interest Group (FIG) Group and act as a guide through new student orientation and throughout the first year of college. Mentors offer peer insight into academic and social life at college, as well as help introduce students to activities and events on campus. 

Mairi Poisson
PoissonMHometown: Chesire, CT
Major: Biology and Spanish double major
Activities on Campus: Biology Department research, Spanish Department Student Assistant, Phoenix club (all women's local community service group), Salsa club (dance group), Dickinson Dining Services
Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
As a first year, I remember feeling so nervous about coming to Dickinson, about finding a place at the college that I "fit-in" to. I learned from my orientation assistant that you don't have to "fit-in" at Dickinson, it's so much better to be yourself and let your inner spirit shine. I want to share that with the next generation of students at Dickinson. Dickinson has so much to offer to such a diverse group of students, and the more excited and prepared everyone is for their adventure here, the better!

Khadijah SuttonSuttonK
Hometown: Brooklyn, N.Y.
Major: Biochemistry
Activities on campus: Executive Board of the African American Society,eXiled Spoken Word Society, Anwar Belly Dancing troupe, member of MCA in the admissions office, Latin American and Caribbean Club,Women in Science Club.
Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
As a First Year Mentor I will be there for first-years. This is an amazing opportunity where I can make a difference, meet and make new friends, become more involved in campus activities, and hone my leadership skills. Overall this is an opportunity that can foster growth for myself and the first year student I would have the pleasure of working with. 

Andrew DiNardo
: Rochester, PA
Major: International Business and Management
Activities on campus: Dickinson Christian Fellowship(President ['15], Small Group Coordinator, Praise Team Leader), Italian Club, Club Soccer, New Life Community Church Youth Leader, New Life Community Church Praise Team member, Project SHARE intern, DTones acapella, Montgomery Service Leaders, Dickinson Service Trips to Kentucky and Belize.
Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I want to be a First-Year Mentor to have the chance to impact Dickinson’s future as well as its’ present.  I want to be an outlet and a friend to those who need it the most and are in search of guidance.  I know how valuable my time at Dickinson has been but I also know that it would not have been so extraordinary without the help of those I looked up to.

Faith ParkParkF
Hometown: Annandale, VA
Major: Self-developed: Global Health
Activities on campus: Office of Community Service and Religious Life,Service trip leader,Resident Advisor/ House Apartment Manager,Research Assistant,Dickinson Christian Fellowship
Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I want to make first-years feel that they are a part of Dickinson by creating an inclusive environment among my first-year interest group. Through this position, I believe that I can practice and enhance my leadership skills and build meaningful relationships. 

Audrey OwensOwensA
Hometown: Larchmont, N.Y.
Major: Psychology
Activities on campus: Liberty Cap Society,Student Senate,Pi Beta Phi Fraternity for Women,Enrollment & Student Life Committee, Mentor for Big Brothers & Big Sisters at Mooreland Elementary School
Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
As a rising senior, I am involved heavily in the admissions office as a tour guide and student interviewer. I love going to the movies as well as exploring the restaurants in and around Carlisle. My favorite movie is The Goonies and my favorite show is The Office - i've actually gotten to see them film the show and meet the cast (hands down one of the top five best days of my life). On campus, I am also on student senate and a part of greek life. 

Laura SilvermanSilvermanL
Hometown: Marlborough, MA
Major: International Studies
Activities on campus: Varsity Women's Volleyball, Liberty Caps Society, Infernos Co-ed A Cappella Group
Why did you want to be First-Year Mentor?
I was lucky enough to make some amazing upperclassmen friends when I was a first year who would take the time to share with me their experiences and wisdom having been gained from being at Dickinson for a few years already. I want the chance to be able be this person for a group of new first years.

Caroline SmiegalSmeigalC
: Clinton, N.Y.
Major: Undecided
Activities on Campus: Liberty Caps Society, Girls' Club Soccer, Delta Nu, Dickinson Doghouse, PALS
Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
As an incoming student this past semester, I was anxious about entering college. My worries were quickly soothed when I arrived for orientation and met my First Year Interest Group and mentor.  I truly believe my experience with my FIG is a large part of my success and happiness at Dickinson. My FIG has been a support system for me at Dickinson. Because I had such a great experience with my FIG, I want to create this same experience for other students. 

Cailin SmithSmithC
Hometown: Baltimore, MD
Major: Anthropology and Educational Studies
Activities on Campus: College Choir, Mermaid Players (including Play Selection Committee)
Why did you want to become a First-Year Mentor?
Coming to college is scary. Even if you’re confident, there is at least one moment – and having only one is rare, maybe impossible – when the reality of leaving home, your old friends, your old room, your old life really hits you. After seeing so many new after Pre-O faces, I became anxious. What brought back my confidence again was sitting in a small group of people who I knew were having some of the same thoughts as me, and we were all looking to our mentor for any kind of guidance possible. This is one of the things I would emphasize being a First-Year Mentor. 

Nicholas TooleTooleN
Hometown: Brunswick, ME
Major: Political Science 
Activities on Campus: Student Assistant-Dickinson Media Center, The Octals, Red Devil's Television, Idea Fund
Why do you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I want to help expand the opportunities that first-year students have to explore Dickinson, understand how they fit in to our campus, and better understand themselves. When I arrived at Dickinson I felt isolated for some time because I found it hard to make friends. I want to make it so less first-years feel that way, by providing them with a mentor with whom they can talk about any matter of things. I seek to be a positive influence in the lives of first-year students during one of the most decisive transitions of their lives.

Nadia Naghedi Baradaran HajjarHajjarN
Hometown: Dimas, CA
Major: Italian Studies
Activities on Campus: Alpha Phi Omega Fraternity, Delta Nu Sorority, Italian Club, (former) Orientation Assistant
Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I want to be a resource to a group of students who need help or guidance. Coming from California, I know firsthand how hard it can be to move so far away from home.During my first year, I was lucky enough to have a good Orientation Assistant and she was able to help me when I needed some assistance and guidance. I genuinely care about people and I think that the first few months of college can be very challenging.I hope to further develop my leadership skills and to improve my capability to help different people. I was lucky enough to attend the LeaderShape program Dickinson participated in my first year and I was able to implement the skills I learned into my orientation group last year. For this upcoming freshman year class, I hope to improve on the skills that I gained and grow as a leader within the Dickinson community.

Caroline PappalardoPappalardo
Hometown: Hillsborough, NJ
Major: Political Science
Activities on Campus: Fencing Club (treasurer), Mock Trail, Big Brother/Big Sister Program at Mooreland Elementary School, Member of Kappa Alpha Theta, Lib Cap

Morgan BatesBatesM
Hometown: Schuylkill Haven, PA 
Major: Music Performance (Trumpet)
Activities on Campus: Jazz Ensemble, Orchestra, DICE, Chamber Music, Choir, Music Society (Executive Board), Student Senate (Working Group on Voting Chair), Morgan Field Community Board, College Democrats, Emerging Leaders Retreat Participant, Interfaith Service Trip Participant, Red Shirt for Dining Services

Why did you want to be First-Year Mentor?
When I came to Dickinson, the first people I got to know really well following my pre-orientation experience were my first-year mentors. From day one, their ultimate goals were to make themselves accessible by doing just about anything to accommodate us and make the college transition as comfortable as possible. Each of their openness and passion for helping the newest Dickinsonians make the most of their first year at college. I want to have a hands-on impact on helping new students start their new lives at the college. I genuinely believe that this work will help me grow as a leader, which is especially vital at this time since I have been taking on various leadership roles on campus. I also value the input and energy of Dickinson’s students, and I think that it would be extremely rewarding to have the opportunity to help immerse first-years into the various aspects of the college community. This starts with the establishment of a smaller community within the first days, weeks, months, and semesters of the students’ college experiences.

Amy Walsh WalshA
Hometown: Ossining, NY 
Major: International Studies
Activities on Campus: Study Abroad, Career Coach at Career Center, Dickinson Friends, Delta Nu, participant on service trip, Phonathon Caller, Eco Rep Club

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I have experienced a great deal of personal growth throughout my time at Dickinson. Before entering college, I was quite nervous to leave my life from home behind. Although there were many moments that made the beginning of my time at school challenging, I am now more than proud to call Dickinson my second home. I would like to act as a First-Year Mentor because I want to actively show that I hold pride for Dickinson- a place where I have really developed. I feel that acting as a First-Year Mentor would be a chance for me to engage with other Dickinsonians, showcase my love for the school, and leave a lasting impact upon first-years. I am sad to know that my final year at Dickinson is approaching and I would love to start my senior year in a positive, helpful way. I know that being involved with this program would provide such an opportunity.

Anya Aboud AboudA
Hometown: Cushing, ME 
Major: Spanish and East Asian Studies (Chinese)
Activities on Campus: Photography Club, Phoenix, Multi-Organizational Board (MOB), intramural basketball.

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor? 
I would like to be a First Year Mentor because genuinely love helping others. I would be thrilled to have the opportunity to ease the incoming first years into their college life; since the adjustment from high school to college is a nerve-wracking one, the incoming students will most likely be nervous, excited, and unsure of what to expect. I will do my best to make this transition as smooth as possible for them. I firmly believe that since the FYMs are the incoming students' first impression of what Dickinson students are like, one's FYM can either enhance or take away from his or her attitude towards and relationship with Dickinson as a whole. I hope to enjoy myself and make lasting bonds with other FYMs and the incoming students.

Ellen Bair BairE
Major: Sociology
Activities on Campus: Varsity Women's Basketball, Big Brothers/Big Sisters

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I want to be a first-year mentor because I want to directly influence campus culture. I am proud to be a part of Dickinson College and its community of success, and I want to be someone who can help make Dickinson even better for all students.  I have seen firsthand that mentors make a real difference. As a transfer student this year, with not a familiar face in sight, my mentor was the first person I met. I had no idea that being in her mentor group would help foster the close friendship we have now. Through my own experience, I have gained a deeper understanding of how critical the position is in the campus community. I want new first-year students to have someone they can count on, who is available when they need to talk or need someone to eat lunch with. I want to be a guide and resource to each one of my mentees, helping their transition into a new academic and social environment.

Alexa BellBellA
Hometown: Latrobe, PA
Major: International Business and Management
Activities on campus: Lifeguard at Dickinson's pool, member of The Liberty Cap Society (Tour Guide), executive Committee for Liberty Cap Society, Tritons for Admissions, treasurer for Kappa Alpha Theta sorority, financial team for the Idea Fund

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor? 
I hope to gain exactly what I gained when I was an Orientation Assistant last year. Through that experience, I learned to come out of my shell and be more involved and active at Dickinson. I never felt like I was "watching over" my first year group. I felt as if we were all friends. The atmosphere and attitude was very friendly and inviting.

Fiona Burke BurkeF
Hometown: Houston, TX
Major: Philosophy
Activities on Campus: Red shirt in Dining Services, future writing tutor, Liberty Cap tour guide, Triton, Delta Nu

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
The beginning weeks of college were really tough for me.  I was so nervous that I wasn't going to meet people and felt homesick most of the time.  However, Greg Horne and the other members of my First Year Interest Group helped me to feel at home at Dickinson.  Having had such a positive experience in my FIG, I hope I can help others to adjust to college life as well.  I think being a FYM would help not only the new first-years but also me and the other members of my class to form close ties with the incoming class of Dickinsonians, who are the future of our school

Madeline ChandlerChandlerM
Hometown: Westfield, N.J.
Major: Spanish & Psychology
Activities on Campus: Montgomery Service Leader Student Leader Intern, Office of Community Service, Camp Koala, Dickinson College Tritons, Habitat For Humanity, Kappa Alpha Theta Sorority, Psi Chi National Psychology Honor Society, Sigma Delta Pi National Spanish Honor Society, Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society, study abroad (Malaga, Spain)

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
The FYMs were the first faces of my Dickinson College experience and I can’t even explain how much they left the most positive lasting impression on me that I want to be able to give someone else. My Orientation group became like a little family to me and is one of my fondest memories of my First Year experience at Dickinson. I remember admiring the FYMs as we all sat in circles on Morgan Field on Day 1 and thinking how much I wanted to be like them; they were so positive, enthusiastic, and true leaders. After three wonderful years and a semester abroad there are no words to describe how truly happy I am at this institution.  I can’t think of a better way to give back to this school than share my love and positive experience for Dickinson by being a FYM. I want my mentees to know that I will always be there for them throughout their academic and social journey as well as help them transition and see them flourish as a Dickinsonian.

Gabriella CorcoranCorcoranG
Hometown: Chevy Chase, MD 
Major: Latin American Studies

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I want to be a first year mentor so I can help freshmen with the huge transition from high school to college. As a rising sophomore, all my freshman year experiences are still pretty recent so I can draw from my own hardships and provide my group members with realistic solutions to problems they may have as well as serving as a supportive member of the Dickinson community.

Kevin Doyle DoyleK
Hometown: Tuscaloosa, AL
Major: Russian/International Studies
Activities on Campus: Dickinson CommServ Co-Coordinator, Dickinson Track and Field, The Dickinsonian (Letters from Abroad and Film Reviews), WDCV FM, Russian Club, Newman Club Core Member, Russian House Manager, Caf and Quarry Worker, Dickinson Friends, Dickinson Science Magazine: Science and Entertainment Editor

Why do you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I have really enjoyed and am thankful for everything that Dickinson has given me and I want to give back to this great community. I think that this will be a great opportunity for me to meet some of the newest Dickinsonians and make some great friendships and connections. I want to make sure that all the new students are aware of all the great facets of Dickinson life.  

Lillian CormanCormanL
Hometown: Collinsville, CT
Major: Political Science; Spanish
Activities on Campus: Pi Beta Phi, student worker in package pick-up, student office assistant (Office of Residence Life and Housing and SLCE), Housing and Apartment Manager, Admissions Student Stories Blogger, Political Science Majors Committee, Dickinson Abroad in Málaga, Spain (spring 2015), Assistant Recruitment Chair, Panhellenic Council, Dickinson Service Trip to Alabama, Resident Advisor, Event Advisory Board

Why did you want to be First-Year Mentor?
I put others before myself far too often, and it is something I am not only proud of but also genuinely enjoy doing. The FYM position is a major part of a first-year’s initial Dickinson experience, and I want to connect with a select group of first-years during their first week so that they feel they will have someone to look to throughout the year. I am hoping that the first year mentor position will give me the opportunity to foster a relationship with first-years without living in a residence hall with them. The FYM position will be different in that I will not be living in the same space as first-years, so I know it will be important to reach out to these first-years even more than I have in the past. 

Jaime Phillips a photo of Jamie Phillips
Hometown: Cherry Hill, NJ
Major: Environmental Studies
Activities on Campus: Montgomery Service Leaders, Leadership Team, Alpha Phi Omega, Service Chair, Liberty Caps Society, Tour Guide, Swing Dance Club

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I would like to be a first year mentor for three main reasons. First, being abroad this year has reminded me what it is like to be completely new somewhere. Having a supportive and fun group of people through my choir and buddy network of local Danish students made my transition infinitely easier. I would like to help the first year students make their transition into college life smooth and exciting by providing someone to whom they can come for advice, support, and social events. Second, I think what I have learned abroad about myself, about adjusting to increased independence, and about forming new relationships will help me to be a better role model for the incoming students. Third, I would like to take this as an opportunity to reconnect with the Dickinson campus. When I return, nearly half of the faces on campus will be new to me and I look forward to this as an opportunity to get to know more of the Dickinson community, including both the incoming first-year students and the whole orientation staff.

Alma GarciaGarciaA
Hometown: Venice CA
Major: Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
Activities on Campus: Pre-Health Society, African American Society, Latin American and Caribbean Club, Sigma Lambda Gamma Sorority, Resident Advisor, Desk Attendant in the library, Cashier in the Devil's Den

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I want to be a First-Year Mentor because my personality traits will allow me to assist and improve the transition process, which first-year students experience during their beginning years at Dickinson College. One of my strengths falls upon the willingness to help other people. I would like to be a resource to incoming first years and be there to listen to whatever it is that they need to share because I am a person who likes to listen. First year students are most in need of a person with this trait. I want to take my knowledge and implant it on to my mentee, so that I may develop a relationship with them that changes not only their lives but my own.

Pia HoltmeierHoltmeierP
Hometown: Essen, Germany
Major: INBM
Activities on Campus: Admissions Intern with the Tritons, International Student Experience Committee, INBM Major Commitee, Kappa Alpha Theta, Student Senate, Alpha Lambda Delta

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I have wanted to be a First Year Mentor since my freshman year. I had a hard time transitioning from my High School in Colorado and would have loved to be closer with my Orientation Group. I think that that way getting to know different people, would have been a little easier. I want to make sure that everyone in my FIG has an easy time making Dickinson his/her home and gets to start the amazing four years Dickinson wants everyone to have right away.

Madigan KayMadiganK
Hometown: Brunswick, ME
Major: Undecided
Activities on Campus: Dining Services Employee, Swing Dance Club, Contributing writer for The Square, Alpha Lambda Delta member

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I am excited by the opportunity to create a support system for first years during the transition into college and throughout the year and to make upperclassmen seem more accessible.  Although this is a leadership role, I think that it is important to remember that there is not much of an age difference between the mentor and mentees.  I would be there for guidance when it is needed, but I would also reinforce the fact that I am a peer and a friend. I think that the First Year Mentor position is a great way to get more involved on campus and give back to the Dickinson community. 

Hayely Murdough MurdoughH
Hometown: Mechanicsburg, PA 
Major: International Studies
Activities on Campus: Blue Mountain Battalion ROTC, Dining Services Worker, Delta Nu Sorority

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
College is a time to find your niche and develop skills that will help you in your future endeavors. For me, college has been a time to come out of my shell and little more and expand my horizons to help me in my career. I am in ROTC, preparing myself for a future career in the military. Becoming a first year mentor would help me to further modify my skills. Mentor’s have a direct effect on how students feel on campus. A confident, welcoming mentor can make a student feel at home. The same can be said about the future position I will hopefully hold in the Army. I believe that by becoming a mentor, I can practice the skills necessary to make me an outstanding citizen and solider.

Emily WhitakerWhitakerE
Hometown: Hopewell, NJ
Major: Physics
Activities on Campus: Peddler Barista, Alpha Phi Omega Communications Chair, Devil's Advocate, Community Board, Triton

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
Dickinson has given me so many opportunities to grow intellectually, enjoy new experiences and expand my circle of friends, and I would like the opportunity to help first years find their own unique paths here.  I love Dickinson and I really want other people to love it here, too. I benefited from having unofficial mentors as a first year, so I understand how important this relationship can be.  I truly want to be a mentor to other students.  If selected to be a FYM I would personally benefit by learning more about Dickinson through our orientation program, which is essential for helping people transition smoothly to college. 

Helena Jeudin
: Philadelphia, PA 
Activities on Campus: Liberty Cap Society, African American Society, Pre-Health Society, Third Degree Step Team, Sports Medicine Student Assistant, Phonathon Caller

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?

JeudinHI want to be a First Year Mentor because I like the concept of the program. When I was a first year, we went through orientation and had an orientation assistant that we never saw or spoke to again when the week was over. However, the FYM program is something that I think will really benefit first years due to its consistency. I want to be there for the new students and to actually help them find their way. I hope that they can learn from my experiences and I hope to gain knowledge from their experiences as well. I hope to gain experiences from this that will help me become a better facilitator, coach, and leader and that will provide me with skills that I can employ after college.

Madonna EnweEnweM
Hometown: Washington, D.C.
Major: Neuroscience
Activities on Campus: Dickinson Newman Club, Anwar Belly Dance Team, Dickinson Christian Fellowship, Pre- Health Society, African American Society, Neuroscience Club, Employment History on High shop

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I would like to be a First Year Mentor or an Orientation Assistant for transfer students because I want to assist the new students coming to Dickinson and also be an example for them. I want to be someone that they can talk to when they are faced with everyday problems at Dickinson. I also want to help them by giving advice that can aid them to take chances and use the opportunities they are presented with at Dickinson. I want to lead a group in which each student will get to know each other and also depend on each other before and after they get to make new friends. I want to help the students to learn how to have a balance in college life. To me, this includes a balance of mind which is their studies, body which includes fitness, and soul which includes engagement in extracurricular and group activities. I want to be a positive voice which will enable them to see the positive in every opportunity they have and also to encourage them to move out of their comfort zones and learn more about themselves during their time at Dickinson College.

Natalie FerrisFerrisN
Hometown: Lincoln MA
Major: Physics
Activities on Campus: Chemistry TA and tutor, DTG, Tritons, Dog House, Outing Club, CARES, and Alpha Lambda Delta

Why did you want to be First-Year Mentor?
A first year mentor is often the first person that a new student makes a connection with. It is the first opportunity for the development of a sense of community within all the chaos of moving away from home and orientation. My first year mentor here at Dickinson is someone who I still turn to when I have social or academic questions. I want to be that person for a group of incoming students. I want to go out of my way to make a comfortable place where they can begin to settle in and feel like they belong. I want to be able to give back to the community buy strengthening the connections built between grades.

Isaiah GibsonGibsonI
Philadelphia, PA
Major: Law and Policy/Sociology
Activities on Campus: Intramural Sports Referee, Vice President of Student Events, Overnight Host for Perspective Students , Young Alumni Trustee Selection Committee, MANdatory Student Mentor, Mentor of Emerging Leaders Retreat

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
Coming to Dickinson as a first generation college student I faced many challenges from picking classes, to finding friends, and various problems at home. I feel that all first year students need someone or a support system that believes in them, when they feel that no one else does. I hope to gain the for filling experience of helping another person's vision become their reality. I plan to be a community adviser for at-risk youth and I feel that this experience will add to my mentorship skills, and enhance my ability to influence others to actively engage and invest in their future.

Ruth StraussRuthieS
Port Matilda, PA 
Major: Physics and German 
Activities on  Campus: Late Night Exec for MOB, Outdoor Pre-Orientation Trip Leader, Student Supervisor/Blue Shirt in the Dining Hall (as part of work study), Triton, Outing Club Member, Alpha Lambda Delta (First Year Honor Society)

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I want to be a First Year Mentor so that I can get to know the incoming class and make their transition to life at Dickinson a little bit easier. I think having a friendly face to talk to during the first few weeks is so important, and since I’m also a WILD Pre-O Trip Leader, I’ll get to make connections with my group of first years before they even set foot on campus. Going on a pre-o trip last year was a great way for me to meet other students who had interests similar to my own and hearing about Dickinson from my trip leaders made me feel even more confident about coming to Dickinson! As a First Year Mentor and Pre-O Trip Leader, I hope to have that kind of positive impact on my FIG too!

Ben Kaufman
Newton, MA
Major: Economics, Political Science
Activities on Campus: Liberty Cap Society, Student Senate, Dickinson College Jazz Band, College-Community Orchestra, Bookstore Employee, Devil's Den Employee

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
Having the opportunity to help the next group of first-years discover everything that Dickinson has to offer would be wonderful. I was lucky to have a group of upperclassmen who helped me find my way at Dickinson, and help me carve my own niche out on this amazing campus. I want to build a connection with a new group of Dickinsonians that will last not just through my last year on campus, or through their four years on campus, but for a lifetime. The connections, friendships, and experiences that are made at college will stick with you and shape you for the rest of your life, so to be a part of the Dickinson experience for the new first years, and to have them be a part of my Dickinson experience in such an important way is an opportunity that I can not pass on.

Major: Law & Policy, International Studies
Activities on Campus: Sustained Dialogue, Mock Trial, Popel Shaw Center for Race and Ethnicity, Women's Retreat planner, Dickinson Christian Fellowship

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I feel that there is so much that Dickinson has to offer to its students academically and non-academically and it is important to give first-years chances to know and participate in these various activities. Also, when first-years come to Dickinson, most of them will be feeling overwhelmed by the different programs or even just simply, the Dickinson culture. Having once being a first-year myself, I have obtained a lot of help from other people to make me feel home at Dickinson and make me feel integrated. Because of this, I want to do the same and be a channel of help to help first-years to maximize their experiences in Dickinson. 

Sarah (Sally) MatlockMatlockM
Chattanooga, TN 
Major: Political Science
Activities on Campus: Liberty Caps, Delta Nu Sorority Member, Idea Fund Board Member, Sustainability Coalition

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
Being a first-year student can be a difficult and scary experience. It is all so new, and it is impossible not to feel alone the first weeks of school. I remember how hard it was moving in and my parents leaving. My First Year Mentor and my group really helped me transition to college. As silly as it my seem, having a group of people to sit with at lunch and dinner made all the difference in my Dickinson orientation experience. I know how helpful the First Year Mentor can be, and I want to be a part of the process. I want to help students love Dickinson as much as I do by providing the support and mentorship they need.

Emily Katz KatzE
Bethesda, MD 
Major: Sociology and Policy Management
Activities on Campus: J Street U, Alpha Lambda Delta, Kappa Alpha Theta, Hillel, ArtWorks, sociology tutor

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I'm interested in being a First-Year Mentor because I thoroughly enjoyed my first year at Dickinson, and I want to make sure that the incoming class has just as positive of an experience. I strongly believe that branching out and putting yourself out there is a crucial part of a successful freshman year, and I hope that I could encourage my mentees to do that by taking advantage of all the opportunities to get involved on campus. In terms of personal growth, I hope that being a FYM would continue to help me improve my public speaking and peer leadership skills. Additionally, I find it extremely rewarding to be part of building a supportive, sustainable community, which is something I would strive to create as a First-Year Mentor.

Sam Bogan
BoganSHometown: Hastings-on-Hudson, NY
Activities on Campus:Community Outreach Coordinator with the Idea Fund, Student Farmer at the College Farm, Biology Department Student Representative

Why I want to be a first year mentor?
Dickinson is a place were communities are often built when people get together to solve a problem. That problem might be a question written on a chalk board or a current issue on campus. Nonetheless, there is never a lack of energy in tackling the big issues. I'm excited to be a First Year Mentor with the Kickstart Dickinson interest group, where incoming students will have the opportunity to build their skills with the Idea Fund as entrepreneurs and problem solvers at Dickinson College before starting their first academic year. As the year progresses, I'm looking forward to seeing how each member of our FIG group applies those skills on campus and engages with our group to enrich and support them throughout their freshman year.

Betsy VuchinichBetsyV
: Gibsonia, PA
Major: Mathematics
Activities on campus: Mixxer Intern, Liberty Cap Society, Alpha Lambda Delta honors fraternity

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor? 
I wanted to be a First-Year Mentor because I believe that I will be a supportive and encouraging mentor to first year students. I will do all that I can to make the students' transitions to college as seamless as possible. I will be a resource for them throughout their first year at Dickinson. I think I will gain a connection to the class of 2018 through this experience. The strength of the community is just one quality that makes Dickinson the outstanding school that it is; my connection with these students will create a bond across class years and interests.

Nick RejebianRejebianN
Hometown: Evanston, IL
Major: Undecided
Activities on campus: employee in the Dickinson College cafeteria, member of Alpha Phi Omega, Mock Trial, Liberty Cap Society

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I wanted to be a First-Year Mentor because I want to inspire people around me and help their adjustment to college. By being a First-Year Mentor, I want to be able to help the first years understand that they are special and assist them in setting/reaching their goals. I hope to gain the ability to be a leader 24/7, and practice what it means to be a leader. 

Alec SchwartzSchwartzA
Hometown: Williston, VT
Major:Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Activities on Campus: Orientation Assistant for Class of 2017 and Transfers

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?

What I want to do is build a foundationally strong and interconnected group that will sustain friendships from the start. A group that feels absolutely comfortable expressing themselves during meetings and activities, enabling them to build the confidence necessary to reach out to other students outside of our small group setting. This is an important way to embrace engaging others in this college environment, and is pivotal because repeated group meetings and activities will give them the assurance that they can do so. I think this program is an important opportunity for integrating incoming students into our community and helping them flourish as Dickinsonians.

Gregory HorneGH
Hometown: Denville, NJ
Major: Policy Management
Activities on campus: ROTC Squad Leader, Club Tennis Captain/VP, French Club, Montgomery Service Leaders: Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children, Mermaid Players, Dickinson College Conduct Panelist

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
Orientation shaped my first semester at Dickinson. I owe a lot to my Orientation Assistant for helping me to feel comfortable in a new and intimidating environment. I hope to build a relationship with my group and act as a resource to them through their first year and beyond. This is a unique and powerful opportunity that I know both the first-years and I will benefit from.

Meghan ReynoldsReynoldsM
: Bethesda, MD
Major: International Studies
Activities on campus: Alpha Phi Omega, Kappa Alpha Theta, L.E.A.D., internship with the Carlisle Police, and previous Orientation Assistant

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?
I was an Orientation Assistant last year and I loved it. I enjoyed being a mentor figure to my first year group, and I learned a lot about being a mentor. Being a First-Year Mentor, I hope to gain stronger leadership and communication skills. Being able to speak concisely and effectively is important especially when dealing with first-years who may be overwhelmed by college. I also hope to gain better leadership skills, especially when leading a small group.

Cheyenne MooreMooreC
Hometown: Frenchville, PA
Major: Biology

Activities on Campus: Eta Sigma Phi, Yes Please!, Morgan Field Community Board, Social Justice House, I Am That Girl, Tritons

Why did you want to be a First-Year Mentor?

I want to be a first year mentor because I had a great first year mentor myself, and I want to provide the same positive experience to incoming first years. I had a really hard time adjusting to college life, but I didn’t feel so alone thanks to the friends that my FIG provided me with and the experiences my FIG leader shared with us. I hope to gain not just mentees but friends, or at least acquaintances. Even if my mentees don’t feel comfortable relying on me as a friend or mentor, hopefully I can help them find someone they do connect to, and feel they can connect to better. At the least, it is nice as a first year it is nice to see someone they know on campus and be met by a smile from them.

De'Andre BattleBattleD
Hometown: Ewing, NJ
Major: Undeclared
Activities on Campus: MANdatory (leadership program for men of color), Montgomery Service Leaders,Dickinson Christian Fellowship, African American Society, Multicultural Ambassadors (Admissions)

First-Year Coordinators 

First-Year Experience Coordinators (or Coordinators) are 6 student leaders who are primarily involved in the planning and execution of First-Year Experience programming as well the coordination of the first-year interest groups and Mentors.  The Coordinators assist with First-Year Mentor training, Orientation, and Extended Orientation programs. This group of student leaders meets weekly throughout the school year with the Director of New Student Programs to maintain the quality of the orientation experience for first-year students.  

Maddie VourosVorous

Maddie is a rising sophomore majoring in Dance from Philadelphia, PA. This is her first year with the Orientation staff as a First-Year Experience Coordinator. On campus, she is involved in Ski Club, Phoenix, Club Soccer and Delta Nu sorority. She enjoys traveling and meeting new people. 

Sara TybergtybergS

Sara is a senior sociology major from Harrison City, Pa. This is her fourth year as a First-Year Experience Coordinator. On campus, she also works at the College Archives and the Bookstore/Devil’s Den. She is actively involved in Spectrum, PALS, and Yes! Please. In her free time, she enjoys reading fiction novels and binge-watching Netflix. Last semester, she had an amazing experience studying abroad in Akita, Japan!

Samantha Millera picture of a student samantha miller

Samantha Miller is a sophomore from the Bronx, New York. She is a Law and Policy and Africana Studies double major. Besides being a First Year Coordinator she is involved on campus as a tour guide, a Triton, on the Leadership team for the Dickinson Christian Fellowship as well as being a member,the Founder and Facilitator of Empowering Your Purpose, part of Purpose Gospel Choir,on the leadership team for Kingdom Builders on campus, a student Note Taker, a part of the African American Society, a Dickinson Ambassador for her high school (Collegiate Institute for Math and Science). In her free time she writes for her inspirational blog, she is a slam poet and she is a model and assistant photographer for J Wallace designs.

Allie FarrandFarrandA

Alie is a rising senior majoring in International Studies. Although she previously worked as an Orientation Assistant, this is Alie's first year as a Coordinator. She spent the past year traveling through South America and interning in Washington DC. A proud Michigander, Alie enjoys spending time by the Great Lakes, checking out local Detroit restaurants and working out. 

Patricia Francis-Hall

Patricia is from New York City majoring in Political Science. Currently, she is a Student Supervisor in the Waidner-Spahr Library. She is a member of the Dickinson Women's Varsity Squash team, a dancer on the hip-hop dance team Hypnotic, and was recently elected to the Exec Board of MOB. She is also a member of the Feminist Collective and the African-American Society.