Peer Mentors

Training and advising committee

Silmang Sene

Silmang Sene

Training and advising committee chair

Subjects: mathematics, physics, chemistry, engineering, French
Hometown: Dakar, Senegal
Major: aerospace engineering
Degree earned: Bachelor of Science in Engineering
Interests: movies, flight simulators, soccer, video games, hanging out with friends, swimming
Why I want to be a peer mentor: Most of the time, students have problems finding a particular method of studying that suits them for a particular subject. First of all, being a peer mentor will give me a chance to help others, to share my knowledge about a particular subject, and to share my experience about college. In addition, mentoring gives me the opportunity to enhance my leadership skills by mentoring different students from different cultural backgrounds and improve my organizational skills. It will allow me to meet new people with whom I can share ideas and learn from. Also, as a peer mentor, I would like to help students find their own ways to study and to be successful in college. Finally, this program will give me the chance to have a positive impact on other people's life. 
Career goals: I am planning on working in a lot of areas in my field but I would love to do more research and find new says to improve aircraft safety. I would like to participate in projects that focus on the development of aeronautics in my country. Also, I want to get a degree in management.
Advice: College can be a lot of fun but one has to find the right balance in order to achieve his or her goal. Also, when you feel overwhelmed by school, you need to prioritize instead of trying to get everything done at the same time. 
Quote: “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” – Nelson Mandela

Domenica DeMeyere

Domenica DeMeyere

Training and advising committee member

Subjects: intro biology, intro psychology, holistics
Hometown: Brighton, Mich.
Major: speech-language pathology
Minor: statistics and data analysis
Year in school: sophomore
Interests: volunteering, hanging out with friends, running, drawing, trying new things, going on adventures
Why I want to be a peer mentor: The transition you have to make into becoming a college student is difficult and sometimes overwhelming. It is nice to know that there is someone who have been in same situation and experienced some of the things students are going through. This job allows me the opportunity to guide and reach out to others, and I hope that through this program I will be able to help students have a smoother transition and feel more comfortable and confident in facing the situations that arise throughout their first year.
Career goals: After completion of a master's degree in speech-language pathology, I hope to be working in a hospital with stroke patients, in aiding them to recover the ability to speak or communicate.
Advice: College is a lot of hard work, but that should never be intimidating. View that as a new challenge to grow and change. As long as you maintain a balance between work and play, this will be a positive experience you will carry for the rest of your life.
Quote: "Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time." – Thomas Edison

Other peer mentors

Gabriel Almeida Alves

Gabriel Almeida Alves

Subjects: biology, chemistry, holistic, Spanish 
Hometown: Curitiba, Paraná, Brazil
Program of study: Ph.D. in neurobiology
Degrees earned: Bachelor of Nursing, Master of Science in neurophysiology
Interests: running, biking, lifting, movies, video games, soccer, hanging out with friends, fermentation
Why I want to be a peer mentor: Teaching has always been my passion and being an extrovert is a great part of my personality. Because of my overflowing willingness to help others and learn from them, I decided to become a peer mentor. I believe that this position would allow me to improve my interpersonal and teaching skills. I also believe that my past academic and professional lives may contribute to better prepare my mentees. My philosophy believes that success may be achieved through sharing, communicating, teaching/learning, planning, dreaming, and disciplining. At the end, my mentees' success is my ultimate goal.
Career goals: I am planning on working in clinical research in hospitals or universities, and/or teaching in community colleges or universities. I would like to participate in projects that focus on the molecular effects of exercise in the body.
Advice: As an international student, I understand how hard being away from family and friends is. I also understand how difficult the transition between high school and college may be . However, there are people who could help you get used to this new lifestyle and overcome these challenges. This is a worthwhile journey. This is a journey where you make friends for life, where you acquire superior knowledge, where you build your network, and where you learn how to become independent and pursue your dreams.
Quote: “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

Jacqueline Deacon

Jacqueline Deacon

Subjects: chemistry, intro biology, nursing
Hometown: Plymouth, Mich.
Major: nursing
Year in school: senior
Interests: spending time with friends, being active, baking cookies and treats, watching movies
Why I want to be a peer mentor: College is a hard transition for most students, especially being away from home and gaining a new independence. I hope to help students through this time. As a peer mentor I will be able to help others grow and be successful during their time at WMU. I am excited to be a role model for students and share my experiences with them.
Career goals: Upon graduation in December 2017, I plan to pass the NCLEX to become a registered nurse and obtain a job in the Detroit area as an emergency room nurse.
Advice: Although classes may become stressful and overwhelming, it is important to stay organized and prioritize studying and completing assignments. College is very challenging but it is also a chance for growth and to learn new strategies to overcome challenges that may arise.
Quote: “Accept what is, let go of what was and have faith in what will be.” –John R. Wooden

Nicholas Ho

Nicholas Ho

Subjects: business-related courses
Hometown: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Major: marketing
Minor: data analytics
Degree earned: Bachelor of Business Administration
Interests: movies, video games, hanging out with friends, enjoying good food
Why I want to be a peer mentor: Meeting new people is always a great experience and helping them to achieve their dream is one of the greatest moments. I want to become a peer mentor because this job not only develops me as a better person but also gives me the chance to inspire and encourage students who are having challenges with their studies. Studies can be a barrier or an opportunity for a student to take and my mission is to influence students to see education as an opportunity not a barrier.
Career goals: After graduating, I hope to be working in a company which utilizes my skills that I have achieved. I would like to participate in marketing plans and also maximize the opportunities that can be achieved in the company. After a few years of experience, I will get my MBA.
Advice: There is always a time to play and a time to study; focus on the task at hand in order to achieve your goals. 
Quote: “Study without desire spoils the memory, and it retains nothing that it takes in.” – Leonardo da Vinci

Marcos Santiago

Marcos Santiago

Subjects: biology, chemistry, physics, Spanish
Hometown: Sabana Grande, Puerto Rico
Majors: biomedical sciences and biochemistry
Year in school: senior
Interests: reading, cooking, watching movies, exploring new places
Why I want to be a peer mentor: At some point in college, students will find themselves facing a difficult topic or class and to top it all off, the professor only knows one way to explain the material. As a peer mentor I want to be able to explain that knowledge from another point of view and assist them in any way that I can as well as teaching them some tips and tricks to succeed in their college career. The end goal is to always find improvement on work on achieving those objectives, both for the student and myself.
Career goals: After completing my bachelor’s degree, I plan to go to medical school and get my M.D. Following that, I hope to enter an residency program and with much efforts, fulfill my dream of becoming an orthopedic surgeon.
Advice: If you are ever overwhelmed by college or life in general, try to plan things out and remember to always take some time to enjoy yourself and have fun. If you don’t, that extra stress you’re giving yourself is going to do more harm than good. Stress is part of everyday life; “extreme” stress is not.
Quote: “But I can say that life is good to me. Has been and is good. So I think my task is to be good to it. So how do you be good to life? You live it.” – Morgan Freeman

Arizsia Staton

Arizsia Staton

Subjects: intro biology, intro chemistry, intro mathematics
Hometown: Saginaw, Mich.
Majors: acting and biomedical sciences
Year in school: sophomore
Interests: Some of my interests are theatre, the study of life, crocheting, volleyball, reading, DIY arts and crafts, and movie-going.
Why I want to be a peer mentor: Reflecting on my educational journey, I’ve realized how important mentorship, leadership, and guidance are in the life of a student. Not only will I be able to help students improve and grow academically, mentally, and socially, but I  will also become a more well-rounded leader and individual. I look forward to helping students be the best they can be and make the most out of their college experience.
Career goals: Upon receiving my B.F.A., I plan to pursue my acting career in film and television and pursue graduate school for theatre in order to teach it as well. Also, I plan to open a nonprofit fine arts rehabilitation organization for delinquent youth in my hometown.
Advice: You are your own individual, and you must live your own life. No matter who or what the obstacle, do what makes YOU happy.
Quote: “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.” – Kevin Durant