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Peer Advisors

  • Are second-year HSSP participants
  • Support Resident Advisors in promoting a warm, welcoming, and healthy substance-free floor community
  • Help plan community-building events that expand learning beyond the classroom
  • Aid RA's in leading at least one Programming Area
  • Assist first-year students with their transition to life at U-M

'17-'18 Sophomore Peer Advisors

A group of 26 first-year HSSP students who will be returning to serve as Peer Advisors in Fall 2016.

Alex Rosevelt

Hometown: Dexter, Michigan (which is about 15 minutes away from Ann Arbor)  

Major & Future Career Plan: I am still unsure of what I'm going to major in, but as of right now I am pursuing a career in medicine. My dream is to be a pediatrician one day.

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: Some of my favorite hobbies include jammin' with my violin, Pierre (that's his name), kicking around a soccer ball, beating everyone in euchre, and singing the Mulan soundtrack. I am involved in two organizations: the Michigan Pops Orchestra and Young Life. If you play an instrument and would like to continue playing in college, Pops is a great way to do that. We play music ranging from Tchaikovsky to "Be Our Guest" from Beauty and the Beast (great song, btw). Young Life is a Christian organization on campus that is very dear to my heart. If you are interested in either of these things, come talk to me!    

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? Whether home for you is five minutes away or halfway across the world, adjusting to college life is going to throw you for a whirl. You're going to have a new schedule, a roommate you've never met before, new friends, harder classes, and so many incredible opportunities to take advantage of (IM broomball?? I think yes.). College will challenge you to grow in every aspect of your life. It's awesome, but it can also be really difficult at times. I made so many incredible memories during my freshman year that I wouldn't trade for the world. However, there were also times where I'd find myself feeling lost, exhausted, and lonely. On days like those, one of the best pick me ups was coming back to my Peer Advisors and fellow HSSPers hanging out and goofing around in Couzens. I'm forever grateful to my Peer Advisors for making me laugh and giving me good hugs when they knew I needed it. I am so excited to be a Peer Advisor next year, because I know how hard freshman year can be sometimes. It will be a blessing to be able to serve you guys like my Peer Advisors served me. Y'all can always catch me on the fifth floor when you're in need of some good hugs and laughter :-)   

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite thing about HSSP is that whenever I come home to Couzens, multiple people always have their doors open. Whether I've had a great day or a "I just failed chemistry exam that I studied 30 hours for" kind of day, I always get to come home and hang out with some of my favorite people.

What food do you identify with as an individual? lightly salted shoestring sweet potato fries with a side of ketchup

Anthony Edgar

Hometown: Chesaning, Michigan  

Major & Future Career Plan: BCN- Neuropsychology, Psychiatry

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I love music, playing guitar, exercising, and playing video games!

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I was deeply impacted by the welcoming environment created by the PA's last year, and would love to create the same environment for future freshmen.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? Memes!(: In all seriousness, the welcoming and close-knit community made a large college feel smaller and more home like, I wouldn't trade it for the world

What food do you identify with as an individual? Orange Chicken!

Archan Vyas

Hometown: South Elgin, Illinois. HSSP made the giant Michigan community feel close and small ad have me lifelong friends. It made my transition to Michigan that much more smoother!  

Major & Future Career Plan: Chemical Engineering - Go to work in industry and pursue further studies.

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I love reading, playing sports, and eating great food. I am a part of M-Heal, UNICEF, and the Michigan Raas Team.

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I want to help the new freshmen feel just as welcome and included in Michigan as I did. The peer advisors helped tremendously with that, making it so much more fun. I also enjoy helping other people and this seems like a perfect chance to do so!

What is your favorite part about HSSP? The people.

What food do you identify with as an individual? A jalapeño.

Di Xie

Hometown: I am from Lawrence, Kansas. When I first came to the University of Michigan, I was anxious about getting lost in the crowd on such a large campus. That is when HSSP came to my rescue. From the day I moved in, I was warmly welcomed by a support team of Peer Advisors who were excited to help me loft my bed and show me around campus. Immediately, I felt all of the pressure being lifted from my shoulders. The Peer Advisors and RAs have become the first people I call whenever I have a problem. I am also surrounded by a group of first-year students who are as passionate about the health care field as I am. HSSP has become my family. 

Major & Future Career Plan: I am currently a pre-dental student planning on majoring in neuroscience. In the future, I hope to be a dentist working in an underserved area nationally or internationally. If dentistry does not work out, I hope to continue studying neuroscience with a focus in Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. 

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I enjoy reading, volunteering, journaling, gardening, listening to K-pop, traveling, and watching movies and K-dramas. I am involved in the Asian Intervarsity as well as the Pre-Dental Association. 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? The HSSP Peer Advisors have greatly impacted my college experience. When I first walked into Couzens, they came radiating with energy, excitement, and warmth because they were so excited for me. They have been incredibly influential in helping me get through my first year of college. I would not have survived without them. Because of how important they are to me and how big of an impact they have made in my life, I want to provide what my Peer Advisors did for me for the new first-year students. 

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite part of HSSP as a freshman was being able to live and be surrounded by an amazing community who are as passionate about the health care field as I am. I love seeing people’s eyes light up when they start talking about their passion for helping other people. Though the road is tough, it is encouraging being around people who work and struggle together towards a common goal of being able to do great things for others in the future. 

What food do you identify with as an individual? Mochi

Elsy Nouna

Hometown: I am originally from Damascus, Syria but I have been living in Otsego, Michigan for four years.

Major & Future Career Plan: I am currently thinking about majoring in neuroscience and maybe a minor in either business or computer science. My future plans are to follow my dreams in becoming a health care professional.

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I love drawing. I used to draw since I was in elementary school and I try to continue this hobby right now by drawing in my free time. I also love reading, taking photographs, playing basketball, playing the piano and just hanging out with friends. I was a part of the Intramural soccer and flag football team this past year and I plan to participate in other intramural sports in the future. Some of the organizations that I am currently in are the Arabic Student Association, Arabesque, Syria Orphan Sponsorship Association and International Refugee Assistance Program. 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? The peer advisor position attracted my attention because two major reasons. First, I wanted to be part of the HSSP community for a second year because my first year was amazing and the friends I made in this community are wonderful. Secondly, the peer advisors during my freshman year helped my transition to college be as smooth as possible and were and still are really great friends along with being a great resource for first year students

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite part of HSSP is definitely the community that it builds. The University of Michigan is a big university and HSSP makes it smaller by having this tight-knit community. We always had group dinner where we take over two giant tables at a dining hall or movie nights where we gather late at night and make popcorn and laugh together. I have made so many great memories in HSSP and I can't wait to make even more next year!

What food do you identify with as an individual? yabraa (I am originally from Syria so they are an authentic food in my home country. They are basically grape leaves that are stuffed with either rice or vegetables).

Hannah Miller

Hometown: Albion, Michigan  

Major & Future Career Plan: I am majoring in Nursing, but also really interested in psychology and Spanish, so I am looking into the possibility of minoring in one of those areas. Throughout this year, I have begun to look at Public Health as a possible graduate degree option as something to think about. Apart from knowing that I want to work in a hospital, I still am unsure what kind of nurse I want to be, or which department I want to work in, after I graduate. 

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: During high school I ran track, so I try to make it a priority to continue running. While I love to be outside and active, I also enjoy curling up with a good book or watching Netflix. This year, I joined the Student Ambassadors program, a group of students that works with the Office of Undergraduate Admissions to reach out to and help recruit prospective and admitted students during their high school senior year. I volunteered a lot during high school, so next year I plan on finding more opportunities to volunteer, either in the hospital system or in the Ann Arbor community. 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? Although I come from a town that is only about one hour away, I was very nervous about the transition to living in the college dorms and away from my family and high school friends. However, the Peer Advisors that helped me move in, navigate campus, and adjust to living on my own really put those fears to rest. They made the transition to college so much easier and I don't think my freshman year would have been as successful without that support. I want to be able to provide that same kind of support for the next incoming class of freshman and help be a part of making their first year as smooth, enjoyable, and successful as possible. 

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite part of HSSP was the small, close-knit community that the PAs and RAs built starting right on move-in day. Leaving all of my close friends to come to college, I was nervous about meeting new people, but HSSP gave me so many opportunities to make new people and make long-lasting friendships. I also really enjoyed the observation opportunities that I was given to shadow doctors and other professionals in the hospital. 

What food do you identify with as an individual? My great-grandparents moved to the U.S. from Italy when they were young, and I can definitely tell that I am Italian! I love comfort foods, like pasta and spaghetti. 

Jean Ang

Hometown: Chicago, Illinois. I was worried about being away from home for the first time, but HSSP made the transition to college extremely easy. The second I stepped foot into Couzens, I felt like I belonged on campus. HSSP made the large community less intimidating because everyone was so eager to get to know one another!

Major & Future Career Plan: I'm a nursing major, and I currently plan to be a pediatric nurse practitioner.

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: In my free time, I like singing, baking, cooking, and playing intramural sports. Other organizations that I'm involved in are Filipino American Student Association and Dance Marathon! 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I wanted to be a peer advisor because HSSP has given me a home away from home. The encouragement and care that everyone in HSSP provides for each other is so unique and valuable. I want to show incoming freshmen why HSSP is so special and provide the same supportive community that I received my freshman year! College life can be difficult to adjust to, and I want to be able to help first-years transition smoothly.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? I have too many favorite things about being part of HSSP! An amazing opportunity that HSSP provides is the ability to observe health care providers twice per semester. It's rare for undergraduates, especially freshmen, to be able to watch health care providers and see what it's really like to work in a hospital or clinical setting. HSSP also fosters a very welcoming environment where everyone feels included. We emphasize a strong sense of community where people can be themselves and grow as individuals, together. 

What food do you identify with as an individual? Sushi, because I feel like my personality has a few different components all wrapped up in one fun package :) 

Joey Wikol

Hometown: Landenberg, Pennsylvania, which is a small town on the Pennsylvania-Delaware Boarder about 40 minutes from Philadelphia. Going to a school ten hours away was definitely intimidating and stressful before I moved in. But the moment I walked through the doors of Couzens I felt a wave of comfort and excitement not anxiety. HSSP was so helpful in transition me from high school to college both socially and academically. Michigan is a huge university but HSSP does an amazing job of creating your own little niche for you. From the beginning I knew I had met people that I was going to be friends with for a long long time and I knew I was set up to be successful at this challenging university.   

Major & Future Career Plan: I am in the College of Engineering and I plan on declaring Industrial and Operations as my specialization. I am interested in pursuing a minor in business.

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I love to fish, play sports and be outside in general. I played IM sports every season last year and played a lot of ultimate frisbee out on palmer field. Ask me if I want to throw a football around sometime :) I also am a huge Michigan sports fan and love going to the football and basketball games. I am part of the Autism Society at U of M.

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I love the HSSP community so much and I want to be able to give back just a little bit to something that has taught me a ton. I really want to be able to be a mentor and a friend to first year students because I understand how scary college can seem and I want to help make their transition easy. 

What is your favorite part about HSSP? There is too many great parts to choose my favorite. I would say my top three would be just hanging out with great, smart and fun people. I loved the class UC 105 and some of the professional Autobiographies where I was able to learn so many fascinating things about topics I had never thought about before. And lastly the Community events we had like Dormal and laser tag are some of my favorite memories. 

What food do you identify with as an individual? Cheesesteak

Justin Yakim

Hometown: Dowagiac, Michigan  

Major & Future Career Plan: Major in Biomolecular science, Minor in Medical Anthropology. Looking into Anesthesiology as a career.

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I enjoy fishing, watching and playing any sport, especially ultimate frisbee, and volunteering. I'm involved with a couple of volunteering organizations, but I'm still looking for one to get really involved in. 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? HSSP had a huge impact on me, and the peer advisors I had really helped me transition into college. I want to share all of the great things HSSP has to offer with the freshman next year, and I want to be the best mentor I can be for the future HSSP freshman. 

What is your favorite part about HSSP? All of the activities HSSP put on. From planned events to random movie nights in the MPR. I found these activities to be a really great way to make great connections and to take breaks from studying. I believe if you put a lot into HSSP and attend as many activities as you can, then you'll get a lot in return. 

What food do you identify with as an individual? Pizza, who doesn't like pizza?

Kevin Pullukat

Hometown: Northville, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience. Hoping to become a pediatric neurologist.

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: DMUM, ASB, and MPAC are some clubs I am a member in. I also enjoy playing basketball and volleyball.

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I wanted to provide a fun community to future HSSPers and share some of the amazing advice I've received from my PA's.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? Making many new, close friends.

What food do you identify with as an individual? Broccoli

Kristen Curtis

Hometown: Ypsilanti, Michigan

Majors: Neuroscience and Gender & Health

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: My hobbies include going on volunteer retreats and missions, weight lifting, wasting time watching movies, and relaxing with friends. I volunteer at the University of Michigan's hospital, partake in alternative spring break, and engage in other random things on campus. 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? As a freshman, HSSP offered me community, support, and resources. Not only did this support come from my fellow freshman, but also my peer advisors. I want to be able to extend this support to incoming freshman and help them along their journey. 

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite part of HSSP was making friends that will stay with me even after college. In August, I was so nervous about sitting alone at lunch, or never hanging out with anyone. HSSP allowed me to find friends the very first week of school, and form bonds and memories that will last a lifetime. 

What food do you identify with as an individual? I identify with ice cream, because I eat it almost every day and will die without it at this point.

Liliana Gorsuch

Hometown: Midland, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: I am currently planning on majoring in Movement Science in the School of Kinesiology, hopefully concentrating in Intra-Operative Neuro-Monitoring, and minoring in Spanish. I am also interested in possibly pursuing a master's degree in public health. Long term I hope to become a physical therapist.

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: My main hobby includes listening to Hamilton at least 10 times a day. In my free time, I also enjoy reading, running, hiking, biking, and hanging out on Palmer Field. On campus, I am involved in Camp Kesem and LSA Student Government and am going abroad this summer to Vietnam and India. I'm also a tour guide, so if you see me on campus, say hi!

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? My Peer Advisors all made HSSP an incredibly welcoming community and made the transition from a small town to a large university much smoother. My hope as a Peer Advisor next year is to provide that same support and friendship that I experienced as a freshman.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? For me, HSSP isn't a community, but a second family. Having a supportive and welcoming environment to come home to everyday made my experience here at Michigan that much better. I hope you will feel the same as a part of this incredible family. Go Blue!

What food do you identify with as an individual? Golden Oreos.

Lydia Hsu

Hometown: Grosse Ile, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: I am intending to major in Movement Science with a minor in Food and the Environment and I am pursuing a career as a nutritionist in the Public Health field with and emphasis on agricultural and environmental sustainability.

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I am an avid napper. I have perfected the art of entering a dreamscape within 7 minutes of hitting my pillow, but I am eager to continue growing and pursuing excellence by minimizing my time needed to fall asleep in order to maximize my napping time. I am also a devoted wearer of fuzzy socks. I believe fuzzy socks are acceptable in any weather, clothes, and shoe style. 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I wanted to be a Peer Advisor because I saw this as an opportunity to give back to the HSSP community. Being in HSSP has provided me with many unique experiences and exposure to a myriad of healthcare professionals with different ideas and perspectives. The community support and environment has made my my entire first-year a truly special memory. 

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite events HSSP has organized are the ice cream socials. They are a great way to meet everyone in HSSP and share a slice (or scoop) of your life, while eating ice cream. These are two of my favorite things wrapped into one beautiful sundae with chocolate fudge and sprinkles on top. 

What food do you identify with as an individual? I am whole-heartedly a grilled cheese sandwich. A grilled cheese can have various layers of personality, depending on the cheese. It's always better a little toasted, like me, after a day in the sun. And it's always better paired with tomato soup, but can still stand-alone as a great meal.

Maddie Vanderlaan

Hometown: Lansing, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: Elementary Education

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: Outside of HSSP, I am also a member of Circle K and work part-time at a child-care center on campus. Between those commitments and classes I'm pretty busy, but still I always find time to nap, watch Netflix, and play way too many card games.

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? HSSP has given me so much throughout my first year here, so I really wanted to be able to invest more in the program and to help incoming freshmen get as much out of their first year as I did.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? By far my favorite part of HSSP is the people. Plain and simple, they are what makes this program so great.

What food do you identify with as an individual? Tomato soup :)

Mohammad Hammoud

Hometown: Dearborn, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: Public Health/Dentistry

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I love to go to the CCRB and eat. I am a part of the Lebanese Student Association and Arab Student Association at the moment.

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I grew an attachment to HSSP from the get-go; I just want to give back in the most positive way because HSSP has given me so much.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite part has had to be getting to know all the amazing people in HSSP.

What food do you identify with as an individual? Hummus

Morgan Hill

Hometown: Southfield, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: I am definitely on the pre-med track, but everything else is unclear, which is completely okay! Right now, I am in love with learning and exploring everything umich has to offer. I am enjoying discovering what my passions are and that is what is most important at the moment.  

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: My hobbies are reading, watching action movies (the gorier the better), listening to music, trying new food, and drinking copious amounts of coffee that everyone says is a problem. I don't think it is. 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I decided to become a PA because of how at home I feel in HSSP. HSSP is a tight-knit community that can't be found anywhere else. Coming from such a large, close family, I knew my first year would be hard away from home. However, being in this community and meeting such amazing people has made Couzens feel like a second home. After my first semester I knew that I wanted to make other incoming students feel as comfortable and safe as HSSP has made me feel. 

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite part of HSSP as a freshman was the group outings HSSP had, for example going to laser tag or movie nights. College can be really stressful so it was great to have that time to relax and enjoy the simple things in life with cool people.  

What food do you identify with as an individual? I identify most with lindor milk chocolate truffles because I can be really shy at first encounter. However, once you crack through the first layer, I am really laid-back and sweet like the smooth center. 

Nadira Chowdhury

Hometown: I am from a small city in Hamtramck. 

Major & Future Career Plan: I am currently trying to major in Public Health with a Minor in Community Action and Social Change. I am pursuing a career in medicine and so hopefully one day I will become a healthcare professional. 

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: Some of my hobbies include reading, laughing, hanging out with friends, and procrastinating until the very last minute. I am apart of two orgs on campus which are Books for a Benefit and Call for Humanity. 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I wanted to be a Peer Advisor so I could help incoming students navigate through campus, college life, and be there for them the way the PA's were there for me. I love this community and I want to give back in any way I can.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite part of HSSP was all the close friends I have made. I don't know what state I would've been in if I wasn't apart of this wonderful community. It feels nice to know that you're part of a family. I have made long lasting relationships and its all thanks to HSSP.  I am so excited to meet all of you! Good luck, and GO BLUE!

What food do you identify with as an individual? The food I identify with is Ice Cream. I can eat it all day and all night!

Natalie Carlson

Hometown: Rockford, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan - I am currently enrolled in the College of LSA with intent to transfer into the School of Public Health (Bachelor of Science) with a minor in Gender and Health. I am also taking pre-reqs for accelerated BSN/RN programs --  talk to me about my unconventional path and dreams of becoming a Nurse Practitioner with mad public health skills!

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I'm an active feminist, a killer euchre partner, a mediocre gym-goer, an admirer/supporter of things I am not talented at (e.g. dancing, singing, being athletic, etc.), a hiker, yogi, traveler, and avid food-lover. I'm involved in the U of M chapter of HeForShe and the Bioethics Society, and volunteer at the Children and Women's Hospital as a doula via the Dial-A-Doula program.

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? The peer advisors my freshman year were instrumental in my transition to college and I really wanted to be a part of that process for the incoming class. I also love the community that HSSP fosters and was excited to be offered the opportunity to engage in it for another year.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? At the beginning of the first semester, the PAs told us in the midst of our nerves and awkwardness that in a few months we'd be super comfortable with each other and already have found close friends within HSSP. I remember being skeptical of all of this love and optimism, but secretly hoping that they were right. Low and behold, once I embraced the HSSP community, I found that the PAs weren't lying, not even a little bit. As a freshman, I loved this difficult, hard, uncomfortable transition because in it there has been a lot of personal growth and growth in my friendships. (sorry for the cheese and sap, but it's true)

What food do you identify with as an individual? A lemon zest mojo cookie, definitely.

Noah Nugent

Hometown: I am from the small town Bath, Michigan. Yes, you're either wondering where that is, wondering if we really take baths there, or if my high school mascot was the bathtubs. To answer those questions, Bath is a small town just outside of East Lansing (bleh), no we do not really take baths there, and no our mascot is the Fighting Bees. 

Major & Future Career Plan: I am currently undecided about my major. However, I am leaning towards majoring in Cellular and Molecular Biology. I came into freshman year wanting to be an orthopedic surgeon. Now, I am deciding between orthopedic surgery and oral surgery. 

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I absolutely love sports. I love playing basketball, football, and track and field. I also have a weird side to me as I love playing all types of games such as video games, board games, and card game. Especially Yu-Gi-Oh and Eurchre. I am part of the MRUN running club as well. It is a club that is open to anyone regardless of experience or talent. They don't only run distance, but they also have sprints and field events. I throw shot put and discus for MRUN and we travel to lots of schools to compete.

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I wanted to become a peer advisor because of the community as a whole. I cannot stress about how important community and the people around you matter in your time at Michigan. I want to be able to give back to this community and be able to provide support for those who are having a hard time adjusting just like I did.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? I think my favorite part of HSSP so far are the fun social events and the community itself. Also the opportunities in the health field that HSSP provides are pretty neat.

What food do you identify with as an individual? I think I identify with shrimp pretty well.

Owen Wilson

Hometown: Birmingham, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: Political Science and German

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I am a part of Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program, Michigan Film Club, Couzens Active Multicultural Ethnic Council. My favorite hobbies are listening to music, watching television, watching movies, playing soccer, basketball, dancing, golf, laying on beaches, frisbee, running, making guacamole, biking, mountain biking, exploring nature, people-watching, I do the occasional recreational reading, and I have never been sailing but I really want to go.

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I love being a part of the HSSP team so much, it is such a special community to be a part of, and I feel like all my peers in it really are just extraordinary.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? I felt like I really built up a lot of good friendships in HSSP that I definitely would not have been able to build if I had the regular University of Michigan experience. It also was really helpful in helping me decide whether or not I want to go into the health field.

What food do you identify with as an individual? My favorite food is Chex Mix.

Riana Hardyniec

Hometown: Wayne, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: Public Health / Social Work

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I am on Cadence Dance Company here at UMich, and I am also apart of the Pre-Physician's Assistant Club. 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? The Peer Advisors played a huge role in helping me adjust to college. I want to be able to be there for future HSSPers as my peer advisors were there for me!

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite part of HSSP as a freshman was how welcoming everyone was. No matter what there is always someone there for you. HSSP is a family and it makes college easier and more fun!

What food do you identify with as an individual? Coffee creamer, without coffee I am nothing.

Ryan Shami

Hometown: Dearborn, Michigan, home to some of the best Middle Eastern food.

Major & Future Career Plan: I am taking the Pre-Med route and plan to purse a major in BCN(Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience). I am also considering a minor in Business which I hope will help me build an understanding of key business skills, concepts, and perspectives. Ultimately, I plan on going to medical school and becoming a future surgeon. 

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I love being involved with just about anything that involves being outdoors. Whether that be playing frisbee, tennis, going for a run, skiing or even studying. If I'm not outside than you can probably find me getting a work out in or playing basketball at the CCRB. I am also really into Michigan Football which I highly recommend every Freshmen to attend and to buy season tickets. The games are always so full of energy and it's just a thrilling experience overall. I also do research on campus and I'm involved in an organization called PILOT where students work together to design and execute projects based on issues of social justice which also allows for individual growth and exploration. 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? Being a part of HSSP has made my college experience worthwhile thus far. By creating a supportive, inclusive, and small environment within this large campus I have been able to make the most out of my college experience with a feeling of belonging. I have also become aware of the many opportunities provided by the university and have been able to take advantage of many of them. I want to become a PA in order to give incoming freshmen the resources, love, and support that HSSP has provided me. The close relationships and the family that is formed within the community is extremely valuable in the prosperity of every individual. HSSP provides opportunities for personal growth, allows for the creation of friends that will last a life time and also contributes a wealth of knowledge to draw upon. I want to be able to acknowledge the value of every individual and the power that we all have together to grow and make a difference in this world. 

What is your favorite part about HSSP? I would say that my favorite part of HSSP is the community/family thats built within it. Coming into a large university was quite overwhelming for me; I was not sure what to expect. However, HSSP was able to create a small, supportive, and welcoming community for me within this huge university. One which I felt like I actually belonged to and people valued me for who I am. HSSP has made my transition to college as smooth as it could be and being a part of this community has made my college experience that much better. 

What food do you identify with as an individual? Shawarma. 

Sebastian Loonen

Hometown: Marshall, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: Major in Cell and Molecular Biology with hopes of going to medical school for gynecology.

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I am a part of Health Promotion at UM which tries to spread awareness about health and health related topics in a holistic manner. I am also a part of Call for Humanity which strives to bring multiple students organizations together to fight towards a common goal depending on the issues that are most relevant in our time. I also really enjoy swimming in what little free time that I have left.

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I wanted to be able to help the freshman adjust to college just as well as I did through the help of my PA's.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? Always having a group of people to go back to no matter what happened. 

What food do you identify with as an individual? mojo cookies

Seth Garrett

Hometown: Lathrup Village, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: I plan to major in Biomolecular Science and minor in Spanish. One of the things I want to learn is how to say the names of chemical compounds in Spanish. Why say "sodium borohydride" when you can say "borohidruro de sodio"?

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I enjoy playing soccer, and even though I mainly play as goalkeeper, I love to play outside the box. Other sports I love playing are basketball, football, and I recently acquired a fondness for ultimate frisbee and broomball (which you should totally look up). I have been known to appear out of nowhere and play smooth jazz on my saxophone, so if you hear an impromptu "Careless Whisper", you know who it is. Another thing I like to do is learn new talents, and when you get to know me, you'll see some of the talents I've already picked up. I'm a part of Call for Humanity, which is actually a student organization several HSSPers and I formed together this year. We organized a panel where anyone could ask experts questions about refugees and immigration in general, and we plan on expanding the topics we cover to human rights, food and environmental justice, and health and well-being. I'm also heavily involved with MAPS, where one of the events we organized was a suture clinic where emergency room residents taught students how to suture and they got to practice with a real needle.

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? When I first moved into Couzens, I was extremely nervous. I didn’t know anyone and overall felt very awkward. I was in my barren bedroom with my parents, when all of a sudden I was greeted by 6 vigorous Peer Advisors who talked to me while they lofted my bed. They made me feel welcome and eased my mind at such a tumultuous time. Ever since, the Peer Advisors have been such great resources and friends. They were always willing to listen to me and help me out whenever I needed guidance. They truly made HSSP feel not like an academic program, but a family. I would love to continue their legacy and make HSSP into a family this year.  

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite part of HSSP as a freshman was meeting so many new and great friends and spending time with them. HSSP seemed kind of intimidating, with over a hundred freshmen, but I was able to find a great group of people who cared about me, and who I cared about. Whether it was playing ultimate frisbee at night, singing karaoke, cramming for an exam, or just talking in the hallway, I thoroughly enjoyed every memory and every second of time I shared with friends I met in HSSP. When you get to live with these people, see them all the time, and share interests, you’re bound to find your “people” in HSSP, and I’m very grateful I was able to.

What food do you identify with as an individual? I identify with Pepperidge Farm Original Goldfish. When you hear the word "goldfish", you're probably thinking about the short-lived, yet lovable pet, but if you happen to be hungry, you're most likely imagining the Cheddar variety of Goldfish. Cheddar is a great flavor, no doubt, however if you've ever ventured to try another flavor, you may have tried the Original flavor. In a grocery store, you typically find 5-6 rows dedicated to the Cheddar in the orange bags, but you’ll only find one row housing the Original in the blue bags. Similarly, I consider myself to be a hidden gem. These baked snack crackers have a buttery, salty, savory flavor that send your taste buds to heaven. Original Goldfish are simple too, consisting of the least amount of ingredients out of all the Goldfish, yet in my honest opinion taste the best. Likewise, I’m a simple person, and when you come to know me, I’m sure you’ll find a honest and robust friend. Pepperidge Farm Original Goldfish are the snack that smiles back. I’m the guy that smiles back. 

Sophie Blanchard

Hometown: East Grand Rapids, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: English and Psychology, Pre-Social Work

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I like reading & writing, Pinterest, playing soccer, running on the treadmill, listening to music of all varieties, and socializing with old & new friends alike 

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? The HSSP community is full of so many great people - they're smart, balanced, kind, and hard-working. I wanted to return to HSSP so that I could continue to be surrounded by HSSPers. In addition, Peer Advisors did so much for me as a freshman: they were there greeting me the day I moved into Couzens, celebrating with me when I got my first A on a college paper, and sitting with me in the hallways of the 4th floor during times of stress and confusion. I want to do the same things for the next generation of HSSP freshmen.

What is your favorite part about HSSP? It's tough to choose a favorite part of HSSP - it's probably a tie between the awesome observation opportunities; the relationships I formed with PAs, other HSSP freshman, and the HSSP staff; and the community's focus on promoting health and wellness amongst its students. 

What food do you identify with as an individual? Strawberries!!

Yasser Abusabha

Hometown: Dearborn, Michigan

Major & Future Career Plan: Majoring in neuroscience and planning on going to dental school.

Hobbies/Extracurriculars: I love to play basketball, work out, or go for a run in the outdoors to stay active.

Why did you want to be a Peer Advisor? I wanted to be a PA because of the positive impact HSSP had on my first-year experience. I want to give back to the community that helped me grow as an individual. 

What is your favorite part about HSSP? My favorite part of HSSP is definitely the support from everyone in the community and being around people that share similar interests. I also loved the shadowing experiences that helped expose me to differing careers in the health care field.

What food do you identify with as an individual? Spinach