Meet the 2014-2015 ACH Fellows!

Name: 
Eloisa Baez
Major: 
Theater Arts
Hometown: 
Kearny, NJ
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hello! My name is Eloisa Baez and I am currently a Theater Arts major with an interest in a Linguistics minor.  I was born in Newark, New Jersey but have lived in Kearny, New Jersey all my life.  My interests include acting, yoga, writing, watching Supernatural, and listening to music really loudly as I sing along.  My goal is to one day win an Academy Award (I will be thanking the ACH community in my speech).  My advice for incoming freshmen is to get involved and don’t be afraid to be yourselves.  Being open to different experiences can help you meet new people and make your overall time in college fun and memorable.  Welcome to the ACH family! :)
Name: 
Rachit Bhatt
Major: 
Biology and Psychology, Pre-Med track
Hometown: 
Jericho, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hi! My name is Rachit Bhatt and I am from Jericho, Long Island. I am a Biology and Psychology double major on the pre-med track. I want to be a neurologist when I grow up because I have family members afflicted with neurological disorders. Also, the brain is complex and challenging; there are still so many unanswered questions which intrigues me. In my free time, I like to write, watch TV, sleep, eat, and plan programs. I also love to socialize with people in my spare time so always feel free to ask to hang out or talk. My advice is to not think college is all work and no play. Although getting your degree and doing well in your classes should be your highest priority, you learn a lot about yourself and develop a lot of skills that you’ll need for any profession by joining clubs and organizations. In fact, joining these clubs makes you a better student which is an even better reason to join! So be a part of something! Good luck and I hope I see you around!
Name: 
Alexa Dante
Major: 
History
Minor: 
Anthropology
Hometown: 
East Islip, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Welcome to ACH, my name is Alexa Dante. I’m from East Islip, Long Island. I am a History major with an Anthropology minor. I’m on the Stony Brook Mock Trial team, and absolutely love it! A piece of advice to incoming freshmen would be to get involved. It’s a great way to meet people with similar interests, and clubs give you something to do to get away from schoolwork for a little while. There’s something for everyone at Stony Brook, so go out and find it!
Name: 
Haleigh Freeburg
Major: 
Biology
Hometown: 
North Kingstown, RI
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hey everyone! My name is Haleigh and I am currently a Biology major with a specialization in neuroscience. I’m an aspiring physician assistant, a retired Girl Scout (cookies = life), and an excited ACH fellow for the 2014-2015 school year. I’m from North Kingstown, Rhode Island and can definitely show you all how to use the Port Jefferson ferry. I love singing, going to Stony Brook football games, watching Frozen, travelling, and trying new things. The three most helpful things I brought with me to college were a closet shelf organizer, my Galaxy S4, and a mindset to always be honest with myself. Understand that “who you are” is not something that defines you; instead, you define it. It can change, develop, and grow, but should never hold you back. So my advice for you is to be honest with yourself and to try to share that honesty with others. Don’t be ashamed of what you love, don’t be afraid to change your mind, and don’t judge others for trying to do the same. The ACH community is so accepting and friendly, so you could not be in a more comfortable place to discover how honesty can set you free. I can’t wait to meet you all next semester, and I wish you the best of luck!
Name: 
Matt Henninger
Major: 
Psychology
Hometown: 
Farmingville, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hey guys!! First off, I'd like to congratulate and welcome you to Stony Brook and the ACH Community! It's been a long, challenging journey so far, but your future has only just begun! My name is Matt and I was actually born in Farmingville, New York, which is about 20 minutes from campus, but moved to Connecticut in the third grade and have lived there for the past 11 years. Coming to college, I was 100% confident that I was going to be a Biology Major on a Pre-Med Track with plans to become a Pulmonology Specialist (Lung & Respiratory Doctor). However, after attending my Summer Orientation, I decided that was no longer the path for me and switched to Psychology on a whim. I have been so happy with the Psychology Major and have set my sights on going to graduate school and becoming a Licensed Clinical Psychologist! A few of my hobbies include my clarinet playing, which I've been playing for the past 9 years and A LOT of TV. My favorite shows include Sex and the City, Will & Grace, Parenthood, Reba, Friends, and Legend of Korra. Probably the best advice I can give to you is to not be afraid to put yourself out there and ask for help. Coming to college is exciting, terrifying, stressful, and a mix of other emotions all at the same time, but no one expects you to do it alone. Anyway, congratulations again, best of luck this semester, and I hope to see you around!
Training Credentials: 
Sexual Violence on Campus
Name: 
Shannon Hurley
Major: 
Physics and Music
Hometown: 
Bayport, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hey everyone! My name is Shannon Hurley and I’m a physics and music double major headed down the audio engineering and disease research track. I’m from just down the road, in small town, called Bayport. Since I’ve come to Stony Brook, I have realized that in college, you truly make your own experience. I am a part of PUSO Ballroom, Actor’s Conservatory, and recently took part in Stony Brook Idol, etc. I never would have attempted some of these things in high school because it wasn’t “me”. But, it’s important to remember that college is a fresh start and the time to try to delve into, and even discover, what truly interests you. Someday it is my dream to win a Grammy and here in Tabler, people are so open and supportive, that they have made me believe in myself more than I ever have, especially with music. Nothing can beat impromptu Tabler Jam Sesh’s outside in the nice weather. But, with that being said, one of the best pieces of advice for a successful freshman year is to find a balance between everything you do. Make sure you set aside a certain amount of time to do what you love (to not go crazy!), do homework, see friends, go to office hours or help rooms and most importantly SLEEP! But at the end of the day, I believe people learn through experience, so I will always be around if you need advice or anything as you find yourself faced with new situations you need help with, but you will also learn any advice I can give through the college journey itself. Welcome to ACH, we’re honestly a family, and we’re proud to have you join us for the ride. Just remember to love and believe in everything you do, without any regrets, and you’re set. I can’t wait to meet all of you! <3
Name: 
Winnie Lewis
Major: 
Music
Hometown: 
Rhineback, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hi, my name is Winnie! I'm from a little town upstate New York called Rhinebeck but I've lived all around the United States, including Connecticut, California, and Iowa. I'm a Music major and I play the flute. My favorite ensemble I'm in is probably marching band. This is my first year being in marching band and it's so fun! I also love the outdoors which is one of the many reasons why being in ACH and Tabler is perfect for me. I think the advice that I would give to incoming freshmen is don't be afraid to talk to everyone! Introduce yourself to the people you encounter, whether it's the other students who live in your building or your professor. It's great knowing you have a lot of different people you can go to for help or company.
Name: 
Zoe Jou Liu
Major: 
Undeclared
Hometown: 
Hangzhou/Shanghai, China
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Welcome to ACH everyone! My name is Zoe Jou Liu. I am currently undecided with my major, but I have a huge passion for Sociology. I love Writing and Theatre as well. In short, I love observing and analyzing! I was born in Taiwan, and later moved to Hangzhou/Shanghai, China when I was ten. Feel free to ask me anything about these places! I would be more than happy to share how the cultures and my life were like in these places. As a member of ACH, I am proud to tell you that you will never regret your choice of being with us here in ACH. 
Name: 
Erynn McLeod
Major: 
Marine Vertebrate Biology and Music
Hometown: 
White Plains, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hey Guys! Welcome to Stony Brook and welcome to ACH! My name is Erynn Legna McLeod and I am currently a double major in Marine Vertebrate Biology and Music. I was born in Houston, Texas on the pre Broadway tour of Jekyll and Hyde but I grew up in White Plains, NY. I love to write songs, draw, go horseback riding, swim, rollerblade, and babysit. My best advice to you is to open up. You are going to be exposed to all different types of people and cultures here and it's important to learn what you can from every different encounter and experience. Secondly, commit yourself to whatever you're doing. You will only get out of a program what you put into it. The work is hard but very rewarding. That being said, you are going to do great here! Soon enough, this will feel like home. I wish you all the best. Don't hesitate to talk to any of us, we are here to help you! See you around!
Name: 
Monica Meas
Major: 
Psychology, Pre-Nursing Track
Hometown: 
Westchester, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hi everyone! My name is Monica and I'm a Psychology Major on the pre-nursing track, also thinking about minoring in Anthropology. I lived in Westchester, New York for most of my life and then moved to New Jersey 3 years before college. My hobbies include playing video games, watching anime, drawing and collecting cute stuffed animals! I also enjoy tea like no other!! I love ACH because it is brimming with life and excitement. Everybody is kind and very friendly which makes us all feel like a huge family. If I had one piece of advice to give to freshmen, it would be to explore and have fun. As much as academics is important to one's college experience,  making new memories with friends or finding new hobbies through our many clubs here on campus is also part of the experience! Also try not to spend all your meal points at Starbucks no matter how difficult it may be. 
Name: 
Curtis Mensah
Major: 
Biology, Pre-Med Track
Hometown: 
Valley Stream, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hello! My name is Curtis Mensah and I am from Valley Stream, New York.  I went to Valley Stream North High School in Franklin Square.  Currently, I am a Biology Major on the pre-med track.  My hobbies are playing basketball, singing, and working out.  I’m in a gospel choir at Bethlehem Assembly of God in my hometown.  What I love most about ACH is the friendly community and the enthusiasm everyone has to meet new people and learn new things. The piece of advice I would give freshmen is to learn to manage their time.  I believe having time for friends, family, and leisure are just as important as spending time focusing on academics.  Be social, but make sure to stay focused on your goals and your time at Stony Brook will be a great experience.
Name: 
Aaliyah Neilan
Training Credentials: 
Public Speaking 101, Red Watchband Training, Safe Space Foundations
Name: 
David Ngo
Major: 
Biomedical Engineering, Pre-Med Track
Hometown: 
Staten Island, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hi, my name is David Ngo and I’m from Staten Island, New York. I am a Biomedical Engineering Major on the pre-med track. I’m not exactly sure what I want to do with my life yet, but that’s what college is for. I love swimming and playing volleyball. I also enjoy reading random articles and researching things about marine biology. I know that coming to such a huge university like Stony Brook can be very intimidating, but I guarantee that you will have the best four years of your life here. You will make lots of friends and have tons of fun, and you picked the best undergraduate college to help you do that, ACH. I would definitely advise that as freshmen you get involved in as much as you can and find a place where you are happy. College is a place to try new things and maybe discover a part of you that you never knew existed. So get ready, I can’t wait to meet all of you!
Name: 
Miriam Nwachukwu
Major: 
Mechanical Engineering
Hometown: 
Saudi Arabia
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Whaddap (: I mean hello! My name is Miriam Nwachukwu and I am an international student at Stony Brook University. I am a Mechanical Engineering Major, however I have a lot of passion for Fashion as well. I was born in Nigeria, but my hometown is Saudi Arabia. I could turn anything into a sport because I love sports. ACH is the perfect place to be if you appreciate people that show a lot of care. If you are afraid that your major doesn’t relate to ACH don’t be because ACH is for all majors. My advice to you is that you should take hold of the opportunities in front of you. As a freshman there are so many chances to get involved and liven your experience at Stony Brook and it’s up to you to mix up in the crowd! You make or break your experience. 
Name: 
Li-syuen Pang
Major: 
Politcial Science
Minor: 
History
Hometown: 
Malaysia
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hi there! My name’s Li-syuen (pronounced “shu-an”) but everyone here calls me Li. I am from Malaysia and am a Political Science major and a History minor. I am intrigued by everything regarding history which means that most of the time, my head is buried in a book or my iPad. When I am not reading, I am usually researching recipes for my country’s various cuisines. I am probably what you would call a foodie. As a naturally shy and quiet person, being a Fellow has brought me out of my comfort zone. It has taught me that ACH has a place for everyone – loud, quite, normal, weird. One piece of advice that I would give to incoming freshmen is do not be afraid to speak up and try new things. You never know who you will meet!
Name: 
Madelyne Pena
Major: 
Psychology
Hometown: 
Valley Stream, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hi! I’m Madelyne Pena. I am a Psychology BA Major from Valley Stream, NY. I love music, singing, playing the ukulele, and most of all, the ACH community! Everyone here is very friendly, never shy of showing off any artistic talent, playing and singing all over the quad. We are a welcoming community, and see ourselves as one big family. One of the best things incoming students should do is to branch out and join clubs and really get involved. You’ll meet friends and be a part of a great community!
Name: 
Amanda Roberto
Major: 
Psychology
Hometown: 
Bithlo, FL
Name: 
Kayla Shults
Major: 
Journalism
Hometown: 
Port Jefferson Station, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hi! First off, congratulations!  My name is Kayla, I'm 18 years old, and I live in Port Jefferson Station, New York. I am currently a Journalism Major, and one day I hope to be a foreign correspondent. I also have a job on campus in the School of Professional Development.  I have always enjoyed traveling, and although I have only been to Italy, I would love to one day study abroad in England or Ireland! I have always been passionate about music, (but not singing or playing it...no one wants to hear that), listening to music and finding songs that express exactly how you feel is one of the best things in the world! I also love doing Zumba, drink a lot more Starbucks Passion Tea Lemonade than I should, and spend way too much time taking selfies with my dog.  Since I've spent my entire life living 15 minutes away from Stony Brook, I always knew it was an option, but I never knew what an incredible school it was until I got here.  Being a part of ACH makes me feel like I'm getting a real college experience, which I thought would be hard as a commuter student.  My advice to any ACH freshmen would be get involved! I know it may seem scary to go into a place where you don't know anyone, but I promise, everyone is just as afraid as you are, and remember, I’m always here for support or just to talk! So get ready, get excited and welcome to the best Undergraduate College at Stony Brook!
Name: 
James Vassallo
Major: 
Biology, Pre-Med Track
Hometown: 
Bellport, NY
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hey! My name is James Vassallo, and I’m an ACH Fellow just like the other cool people on this page! I’m a commuter student from Bellport, NY, and am a Bio Major on the Pre-Med track. I love to cook, go to the gym, listen to music, and play Pokemon! Stony Brook is a huge campus with a lot to offer, which can seem pretty intimidating, but don’t be scared. Take advantage of all of the new opportunities, and most importantly be yourself. Use your freshman year as a new opportunity to be the best that you can be. ACH is the best UGC, with the most accepting and welcoming environment on campus. So don’t be afraid to do your own thing, and find what interests you! Meet new people, take new classes, and explore who you are and your interests; you might surprise yourself!
Name: 
Vandana Venugopal
Major: 
Pharmacology
Hometown: 
Dayton, NJ
Advice for First-Year Students: 
Hello! My name is Vandana Venugopal and I'm an ACH Undergraduate College Fellow! I am currently a Pharmacology major. I am from Dayton, New Jersey. My hobbies include music, reading, foreign languages, watching movies, and hanging out with friends. My advice for first year students is to get involved on campus, and to be open to new experiences. This will allow you to meet new people on campus, and to learn more about your interests. Don't be afraid to get involved with your Hall Council, or to learn more about an activity you've never heard of before! I hope you have a wonderful experience being in ACH, and look forward to meeting to meeting you!