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Meet Our GOLD Leader Mentors

GOLD Leader Mentors are student leaders who volunteer their time to work with the GOLD program. Mentors staff the GOLD Leadership Center in MacVittie College Union Room 114 weekday afternoons & evenings, participate in GOLD events and complete certificate programs, serve as role models for other student leaders and campus organizations, provide information on campus activities and organizations, and help students to make connections and get involved in campus life.

The mentor staff introduce speakers at workshops, oversee student Personal Development Sessions and provide support and assistance for all GOLD programs, including Leadership Certificate Programs. Student leaders and students enrolled in the GOLD Leadership Certificate Program are encouraged to apply for the leader mentor positions in the spring semester. Become a GOLD Leader Mentor.

Looking to complete your personal development (PD) session with a GOLD Leader Mentor for Bronze Certificate credit? Register online at

2019-2020 Mentors

alex butler profile

Alexandra Butler

Alex is a senior with a double major in International Relations and Spanish with a Legal Studies minor from Clarence, New York. Aside from GOLD, she is a member of the Geneseo swim team where she swims distance. She is also a part of the Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society. She thinks GOLD is an important part of Geneseo because it encourages students to follow their interests, even if they can’t be traditionally found in a classroom, and introduces them to new ideas and people

Fun fact about Alex: She studied abroad in Spain last semester and she loves to travel.

Favorite Leadership Quote: “The way to achieve your own success is to be willing to help somebody else get it first.” -Iyanla Vanzant


amanda young profile

Amanda Young

Amanda is a junior psychology major and conflict studies and sociology minor from Long Island, New York. She is a transfer student and is very interested in Industrial Organizational psychology but she is still open to other things. Besides being a GOLD mentor, she is also involved in the psychology club, club volleyball, and has gone to Italy for a summer study abroad trip and hopes to go for a whole semester. Amanda is a big supporter of the GOLD program because she believes the workshops provide valuable life lessons and skills that many do not get the chance to learn in their classes. She finds the GOLD program not only helpful for life in college, but also outside of college, and at the same time she finds many of them fun and interesting to participate in.

Fun fact about Amanda: At Christmas time my family and I bake 22 different types of cookies and give them out to friends and family. Also, I have never broken a bone in my body, knock on wood!

Favorite Leadership Quote: “A true leader has the confidence to stand alone, the courage to make tough decisions, and the compassion to listen to the needs of others. He does not set out to be a leader, but becomes one by the equality of his actions and the integrity of his intent" -Douglas McArthur

Brooke hershenhorn

Brooke Hershenhorn

Brooke is a junior year accounting major from Northport, New York. She would like to be involved in wealth management and financial advisory after college. In addition to being a GOLD mentor, she is a member of Sigma Kappa and the Vice President of Finance and Administration of the Inter Greek Council. She believes that the GOLD program is a great way to bring our campus closer together. Her favorite part of GOLD is its universality and ability to help all students become leaders.

Fun fact about Brooke: She studied abroad in Greece, Italy, and Spain this summer!

Favorite leadership quote: "Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek." -Former US President Barack Obama

corrine reda profile

Corinne Reda

Corinne is from Cutchogue, New York, on Long Island. She is a biology major, hoping to become a physical therapist. On campus Corinne is involved in Women's club volleyball and lacrosse and is also working to create a Women's club soccer team on campus. She is also involved in the Circle K service club and the biology club. Corinne loves the GOLD program because it is a fun and interactive way to add to your educational experience at Geneseo. It supplements material that may be missing from the classroom setting, in order to make you into a well developed student.

Fun fact about Corinne: She ran a half marathon!

Favorite leadership quote: "Leadership is about vision and responsibility, not power." -Seth Berkley

francesca calobrisi profile

Francesca Calobrisi

Francesca is a Junior Psychology major with a minor in Sociology from Long Island, New York. Other than being a GOLD Mentor, she is a school counseling intern at Ellis B. Hyde Elementary School in Dansville, with the hopes of becoming a school counselor in the future. Francesca loves GOLD and believes that you will always learn something new from attending workshops. She feels that GOLD is such a fun way to get involved on campus, while getting the opportunity to develop life skills for after college and outside the classroom. Francesca recommends signing up for workshops because they are great for personal growth and discovering how to be a better leader.

Fun fact about Francesca: She has studied abroad in Italy!

Favorite leadership quote: "The role of a great leader is not to give greatness to human beings, but to help them extract the greatness they already have inside them" - John Buchan



Emma Trolley

Emma is a senior Communication major with a double minor in Psychology and Conflict Studies from Rochester, NY. Apart from being a GOLD Mentor, she is the Blood Drive Coordinator for the Red Cross Club and a member of the Women's Club Volleyball Team. Emma believes that GOLD is a valuable resource for self-growth, a great way to try out new things, and a great way to meet new people on campus.

Fun fact about Emma: She loves house plants and succulents and has many adorable plant babies.

Favorite Leadership Quote: “Leadership is an action, not a position.” -Donald McGannon

jess perrone profile

Jessica Perrone

Jess Perrone is a sophomore double major in Psychology and Spanish with a minor in public administration from Rochester, NY. She hopes to one day be working in non-profit, creating an environment or diversity and acceptance. Jess believes that the GOLD program is an amazing way to get involved on campus and make connections with people from all over. For anyone that is in the psychology program, she recommends them to involve themselves in the mind-blowing life discussions of the GOLD mentor staff.

Fun fact about Jessica: Jessica has been paragliding off the Swiss Alps before!

Favorite leadership quote: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou, poet and civil rights activist


Evan Burr

Evan is a senior Biology major with a minor in Environmental Studies. He is originally from Spencerport, NY. On campus, he is involved in undergraduate student research, Between the Lines Acapella group, and Tri beta Biology honor society. Evan loves GOLD because it gives people the opportunity to discover what they are passionate about.

Fun Fact about Evan: His room is decorated to look like a forest!

Favorite leadership quote: “He who cannot be a good follower cannot be a good leader” -Aristotle


julia muller profile

Julia Muller

Julia is a sophomore Biology major from Chili, NY (not pronounced like the food). In addition to GOLD, Julia is a saxophonist with the Geneseo Pep Band, the secretary for Roosevelt Institute at SUNY Geneseo, and a member of the American Red Cross Club and other political advocacy clubs. She believes that the GOLD program is an excellent way for students to learn about leadership skills and other topics in ways that are often not found in a classroom setting.

Fun fact about Julia: Her family moved to Baton Rouge, Louisiana right before her freshman year at Geneseo! (Geaux Tigers)

Favorite leadership quote: “Leadership is not a position or a title, it is action and example.” -Donald McGannon



Isabella Ovejero*

*On leave for the Fall 2019 semester

Isabella Ovejero is a senior childhood with special education major with a concentration in math. She is from Fairport, NY. In addition to being a GOLD mentor, she is involved in the Alpha Beta Xi chapter of Alpha Phi Omega and is involved in YCC. In her free time, Isabella enjoys playing guitar, traveling, spending time with friends, and running. Isabella believes that GOLD is a program that is beneficial to all students. The GOLD program offers seminars to educate students on a variety of subjects related not only to leadership but related to life skills that are important to an individual’s personal and professional life that are not necessarily taught in the classroom. It allows students to make connections with each other and gives students a safe place to discuss their ideas about a variety of different topics. There are so many specialty topics that are offered as GOLD seminars that everybody can work toward a certificate that interests them.

Fun fact about Isabella: She has been stung by a jellyfish and bitten by a poisonous spider and yet still enjoys adventures in nature!

Favorite leadership quote: “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” -John Quincy Adams

jenna smolinski profile

Jenna Smolinski

Jenna is a sophomore Economics major, Spanish minor from Rome, NY. she is very excited to start an internship as the Student and Community Engagement Coordinator for the Center of Community. Jenna is also in the sorority Sisters Making a Change. In her free time she likes doing photography, traveling, and volunteering. Jenna loves GOLD because it has connected her to so many awesome people and she thinks everyone should get involved.

Fun fact about Jenna: She hiked across the entire state of West Virginia this summer on the Appalachian Trail!

Favorite leadership quote: "You don't have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great" -Zig Ziglar


Jessica Brockway

Jessi is a senior Business Administration and Mathematics double major, Finance minor. She is from Spencerport, near Rochester, NY. In addition to being a GOLD mentor, Jessi is an ARA for Eco House in Monroe Hall, on the club Rugby team, and an analyst for the Student Managed Investment Fund. She believes that GOLD is a great way to not only develop leadership skills but also explore a variety of topics from sustainability to career development. Jessi is the Chief Organizational Manager and recommends that all students participate in GOLD because there is always a workshop that will appeal to you.

Fun fact about Jessica: She recently interned in the marketing department of a living history museum.

Favorite leadership quote: "One who cannot be a good follower, cannot be a good leader." -Aristotle

julianne bazydlo profile

Julianne Bazydlo

Julianne is a senior Accounting major from Syracuse, NY. Along with being a GOLD mentor, she is the student assistant for Business Law I and II and is one of the site coordinators for the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program in Geneseo. She is also a member of the service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega. She loves that GOLD is a positive environment that brings students of all backgrounds and interests together. She also appreciates GOLD's commitment to being there for all students now while preparing and motivating them for the future.

Fun fact about Julianne: She lived and worked at a water park in the Adirondacks for three summers.

Favorite leadership quote: "If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right." -Henry Ford

kristen bull profile

Kristen Bull

Kristen Bull is a senior biology major, psychology minor with hopes of becoming a physical therapist! She is from the lovely town of Lancaster New York (30 minutes from the beautiful city of Buffalo! #716) Besides GOLD, Kristen is co-president of the Women's Ice Hockey team, and an intern in the athletic training room. Besides athletics you can find her cashing you out at the Geneseo Wegmans! The GOLD program has allowed Kristen to step outside of her comfort zone, has taught her many new leadership techniques, and has brought so many new friendships into her life!

Fun fact about Kristen: Kristen and her brother were born without any wisdom teeth due to a genetic defect!

Favorite leadership quote: "Failure is not fatal but the failure to change might be" -John Wooden


peter grella profile

Peter Grella

Peter is a junior biology major from Saratoga springs, NY. Peter is the historian of stitches, the knitting and crocheting club. He is also part of the pep band and an EMT. Peter is hoping to go to medical school when he graduates. Peter believes GOLD is the best place to become a leader and an active member of the Geneseo community. It's an amazing program with a lot of great opportunities!

Fun fact about Peter: Peter used to be able the recite the entire script of the Spongebob Squarepants movie

Favorite leadership quote: "When I talk to managers, I get the feeling that they are important. When I talk to leaders, I get the feeling that I am important" -Alexander den Heijer


matt desimone profile

Matthew DeSimone

Matt is from Holley, NY. He is a Business Administration major with a minor in Communication. Matt tutors for introductory micro and macro classes and is also involved in club soccer. Matt thinks GOLD is a great opportunity to meet new people and learn valuable skills. 

Fun fact about Matt: He wants to climb all 46 high peaks in the Adirondacks!

Favorite leadership quote: “A leader can’t lead unless he knows where he’s going” -John Locke, LOST

steve park profile

Gunhyung "Steve" Park

Steve is a sophomore Psychology major and a Women's and Gender Studies and Philosophy double minor. Steve holds a pre-law chapter with Phi Alpha Delta International Law Fraternity here on campus. Steve is yearning to become an International Human Rights Lawyer specializing in International Women's Human Rights working for the UN Women. He's also working as an International Student Ambassador with the International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS Offices). Steve's also one of the DICE (Diversity and Inclusion Community Educator) Facilitators working with the Office of Diversity and Equity. Having spent most of his education years back in Korea, Steve started studying in the US in the Fall of 2017. He's always open to making new friends and fruitful conversations and discussions. With another dream of becoming a volunteer Taekwondo instructor/translator, he currently holds 3rd degree of Black Belt in TKD and loves exercising of any kind. He also always wanted to become a novelist as well, so reading and writing have always been his favorite hobbies. Steve also likes adventures and traveling. Please feel free to contact Steve for anything :D

Fun fact about Steve: He spent 21 months serving in the Republic of Korea Army.

Favorite leadership quote: “Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

morgan hernandez profile

Morgan Hernandez

Morgan is a Senior Sociology major from Harlem, NY. They enjoy getting involved on campus with social justice related issues. They like to volunteer their time to Safe Zone training, the Diversity and Inclusion Community Educator (DICE) program under the Office of Diversity and Equity, and dedicate time to the Activist Fighting Racial Oppression (AFRO) taskforce. They work full-time as a student and part-time as a Program Assistant for the Academic Peer Mentor (APM) program under the Department of Academic Planning and Advising (DAPA). They are currently finding ways to provide the student body platform for their voices and approaching more of their work in an intersectional way. They strive to improve the Geneseo community to recognize their underrepresented students. Morgan believes the GOLD program to be a place of learning about yourself, becoming a well-rounded person, and being the best leader you can be. They believe in the students and has a strong desire for them to all success in their own individual way.

Fun fact about Morgan: They have chipped their front left tooth three times!

Favorite leadership quote: "It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences." Audre Lorde


Nikhil Reddy

Nikhil is a senior Biology major from Jamesville, NY. In addition to being a GOLD mentor, Nikhil is a Supplemental Instructor for general biology, Treasurer of the Biology Club and a member of Sigma Alpha Mu. Nikhil is on the pre-med track and aspires to attend medical school after graduation. Nikhil is the Chief Secretarial Manager and believes that being involved in the GOLD program is a great way to build leadership and life skills. These skills can be used in a variety of different applications for personal and professional development. It not only helps you in college but can help prepare you for life afterward.

Fun fact about Nikhil: Michael Scott is his hero.

Favorite leadership quote: "To add value to others, one must first value others." (John Maxwell)

Ousmane Sam profile

Ousmane Sam

"All I need is a fat beat for inspiration and the writing will probably commence, or I'll just bob my head. A book is necessary, jokes help and my penmanship is questionable. Too many things make me tick, I have tons to say and am aware of the lot to pick."

Ousmane is a senior Communication major with a minor in Urban Studies. Born and raised in Washington Heights, NY, he traveled around the city’s subway independently to get to school. Ousmane is also Vice Chairman of M.I.L.E.S, an organization geared toward developing students through professionalism and service. He contentedly partakes in volunteer initiatives to cope with the hardships of growing up.

Fun fact about Ousmane: He has shared a glass of water with his cat

Favorite leadership quote: "if you not doing what you want, what are you really doing?"


Patrick Buckley

Patrick is a senior Biochemistry major and College Honors minor from Horseheads, NY. He is an Andrew Goodman Foundation Vote Everywhere Ambassador and is passionate about voter registration on campus. Patrick served as the 2017 James Houston ’80 Ambassador in Innovation and is working to bring scientists and the public together to break down barriers of mistrust. He involves himself in research on campus with Dr. Travis Bailey studying Zebrafish and aspires to be a virologist one day, studying emerging and publically-relevant viruses. Patrick thinks that the best aspect of the GOLD Program is its accessibility and encourages everyone to look for and attend GOLD workshops that they think they might find interesting.

Fun fact about Patrick: He can wiggle his ears!

Favorite leadership quote: “Ultimately, leadership is not about glorious crowning acts. It’s about keeping your team focused on a goal and motivated to do their best to achieve it, especially when the stakes are high and the consequences really matter. It is about laying the groundwork for others’ success, and then standing back and letting them shine.” -Astronaut Chris Hadfield


rachel wallisky profile

Rachel Wallisky

Rachel is a junior History and American Studies double major with a political science minor from Horseheads, NY. She is an Andrew Goodman Fellowship Ambassador, passionate about civic engagement and GOTV efforts, and is also one of the two Townhouse Community Organizers. In her spare time, you can find Rachel playing piano, jamming to her favorite Broadway cast albums, or writing songs. Rachel’s favorite part of GOLD is the fostering of group learning and leadership.

Fun fact about Rachel: She can play the piano upside-down!

Favorite leadership quote: “Ultimately, leadership is not about glorious crowning acts. It's about keeping your team focused on a goal and motivated to do their best to achieve it, especially when the stakes are high and the consequences really matter. It is about laying the groundwork for others' success, and then standing back and letting them shine.” -Astronaut Chris Hadfield

sakura hamazaki profile

Sakura Hamazaki

Sakura is a junior Biology major and Chemistry and Mathematics minor from Hastings on Hudson, NY. Aside from the GOLD program, she is part of the Geneseo Women's Swimming and Diving team. Over the last few years, she has been developing a Student Athlete Resource Center and will be serving as a Student Athlete mentor this upcoming fall. She is currently involved in research in the Chemistry department and is on the pre-med track, aspiring to attend medical school upon graduation. Her favorite aspect of GOLD would be the student to student mentorship it fosters and she hopes to bring this mentorship to the Student Athlete Resource Center as well. She is thankful for all the things the GOLD program has taught her and she hopes everyone becomes more active within the program by taking more workshops!

Fun fact about Sakura: She can ride a unicycle!

Favorite leadership quote: "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, concerned citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has." -Margaret Mead


Sara Wendell

Sara is senior Psychology major and Human Development minor from Binghamton, NY. She is the Vice Chair and head of Membership on the Campus Activities Board and serves as an ambassador at the Office of Admissions. She is currently involved in research in the Psychology department and would like to be a Clinical Psychologist one day. Sara thinks that the GOLD Program is a wonderful addition to our campus and is a great way for students to learn more about themselves and better their academic careers. She encourages everyone to look for workshops that interest them and sign up.

Fun fact about Sara: Her favorite show is Parks and Rec

Favorite Leadership Quote: “Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other” -John F. Kennedy


Sophia Farchione

Sophia is a senior year biology major from Syracuse, New York. She one day hopes to be a nurse practitioner specializing in orthopedics. Outside of Gold, Sophia is a captain for the Geneseo Womens Swim Team. If she’s not swimming, studying or having a blast at Gold, Sophia is guaranteed to be eating, sleeping, or practicing her juggling. Sophia is the Office Manager of GOLD wants you to always remember that GOLD is GOOD!

Fun fact about Sophia: Every spring her family makes their own homemade maple syrup right in their own backyard.  After two weeks of collecting sap from their own trees, the family boils it for up to 8 hours in their makeshift fireplace resulting in fresh warm syrup for a year's worth of pancakes.

Favorite leadership quote: “Leadership has been defined as the ability to hide your panic from others” -Lao Tzu">

Vika Juskiewicz

Vika Juskiewicz

Vika is a senior biology major, math minor. Her goals for the future are to go to veterinary school. Vika is also involved in Sigma Kappa and club tennis on campus! This is Vika's second year being a GOLD mentor. She has been involved in GOLD since her freshman year, and is the Chief Promotional Manager.

Fun fact about Vika: Halloween is her favorite holiday!

Favorite Leadership Quote: “Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, others make it happen.” – Michael Jordan

ashley pannio profile pic

Ashley Pannoni

Ashley is majoring in Mathematics, with a minor in Data Analytics. She is from Rochester, New York. Ashley a member of Sigma Kappa sorority where she holds the position of Vice President Of Membership. She loves talking and getting to know new people! Ashley also works at the Math Learning Center where she can help those who need it and get involved on campus. Ashley believes that the GOLD program is a great way to do that and help develop leadership skills along with making connections with students you wouldn't usually come in contact with. She is excited to get more involved on campus and develop greater friendships through GOLD!

Fun Fact about Ashley: She studied abroad in Greece, Italy, and Spain over the summer!

Favorite Leadership Quote"Life begins at the end of your comfort zone" -Neale Donald Walsch

colin beasor profile

Colin Beasor

Colin is a junior Business Administration and Political Science double major from Greenwich, New York. Along with being involved in GOLD, he is currently the assistant news editor on the Lamron and a member of the Model UN club. Colin believes GOLD is a valuable resource for students to not only develop leadership skills but also life skills and for the development of personal growth.

Fun Fact about Colin: Colin and his family recently moved to New Mexico. This is the second time they have lived there!

Favorite Leadership Quote: "Great leaders are not defined by the absence of weakness, but rather by the presence of clear strengths." - John Peter Zenger

linda lin

Linda Lin

Linda is a sophomore International Relations major and Asian Studies minor from Mount Morris, NY. In addition to GOLD, Linda is part of the Chinese Culture Club at Geneseo (CCCG) and Livingston CARES. In her free time, she likes volunteering, watching tv, listening to C-pop, and learning new languages. Linda believes being a part of the GOLD program is a great way of learning new ideas and developing new skills. The GOLD program is an amazing program and she recommends everyone to attend workshops.

Fun Fact about Linda: Her favorite bands are Phoenix Legend and X Nine.

Favorite Leadership Quote: "It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop." - Confucius

Madelynn Maiolo

Madelynn Maiolo

Madelynn is from Rome, New York. She is involved in Greek life on campus, specifically Delta Phi Epsilon and is a Communication major. Madelynn enjoys singing and doing makeup in my free time.

Fun Fact about Madelynn: She was born on 9/19 at 9:19 am.

Favorite Leadership Quote: "Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other" - John F. Kennedy

Nickolai Maggiore

Nickolai Maggiore

Nickolai is a Senior psychology major from Long Island. He loves being outdoors, shopping, and reading during his free time. Further, Nickolai admires strong leadership, which the GOLD team is filled with.

Fun Fact about Nickolai: He was born in Russia.

Favorite leadership Quote: "Work ethic is important because, unlike intelligence, athleticism, charisma or any other natural attribute, it's a choice"- Mike Rowe

Shantal Herrera

Shantal Herrera

Shantal is a freshman math major with an adolescent education certificate. She would like to minor in linguistic and learn sign language. Shantal is from Mount Morris Ny (only 15 minutes away from Geneseo). Back in high school, Shantal was part of the National Honor Society and key club. She was always very passionate about doing community service and being part of different kinds of projects. Therefore, Shantal decided to join the GOLD program, where she can do what she loves, helping people and the community. Shantal is also the treasurer for the student coalition of migrant workers. Shantal thinks GOLD really opens the door for new and fun adventures and creates great friendships.

Fun Fact about Shantal: Shantal is originally from Mexico and is the first generation to go to college.

Favorite Leadership Quote: "Leadership is about empathy. It is about having the ability to relate to and connect with people for the purpose of inspiring and empowering their lives." -Oprah Winfrey