Staff

Rob Freidhoff

Director, Engineering Advising Center

Rob is a passionate advisor who enjoys working with students to optimize their educational experience. He holds a Master’s degree in Adult & Higher Education from Grand Valley State University and is interested in how emerging media/technology may aid in the delivery of timely communication, while also enhancing the advising relationship. Student success is mission critical to Rob’s work and he looks forward to helping you achieve your academic and career goals.

Mark Collyer

Academic Advisor & Peer Advisor Supervisor

Mark has his Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering and experience working in the aerospace industry. He completed a Master’s degree in Student Affairs and Higher Education at Miami University of Ohio, where he advised first-year students in science, engineering and mathematics disciplines. Mark enjoys helping students utilize their passions to set a path for the future.

Leonara Lucaj

Academic Advisor

Leonora is committed to helping all students transition successfully to college and achieve their academic and professional goals. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Master’s degree in Social Work, both from the University of Michigan. Leonora has experience in academic advising, crisis management, student services, and teaching. She is extremely passionate about issues that impact first generation college students and underrepresented students.

Michelle Sonderman

Academic Advisor & Peer Mentor Coordinator

Michelle received her Master’s degree in Counseling from Oakland University and worked in the Interdisciplinary and Professional Programs office as a graduate coordinator at U-M before joining the EAC team. Her background consists of academic advising, counseling, and instruction of a first-year college success course. She enjoys assisting students with their transition from high school to college and helping them make a plan of success for their academic and professional future.

Shawn Salata

Academic Advisor

Shawn brings over 20 years of experience in the College to her advising role in the EAC. A proud Michigan alum, she also earned a Masters in counseling from Eastern Michigan University. She is dedicated to supporting students’ transition into the College, and is a big proponent of experiential learning. She encourages students to make connections on campus in order to make the most of their Michigan career.

Jennifer Taylor

Academic Advisor

Jennifer is a half-time advisor in the EAC, and she enjoys working with students to create an optimal curriculum balance for their personal and academic success. She has advised students for over 10 years, and previously worked in the UM College of LSA – Psychology Department. Jennifer’s two degrees are from the University of Michigan: a bachelors degree in Elementary Education, and a masters degree in Higher Education.

Susan Kaiser

Student Success Assistant

Susan is a dedicated professional with diverse experience in career counseling, education, and program management and enjoys assisting students with reaching their goals. She has worked within the University for several years and previously worked in the non-profit arena. Susan received her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Grand Valley State University, and a masters degree in Professional Studies in Education from Capella University.

2017 – 2018 Peer Advisors

The college experience is very different from the high school experience. The way you approach your academics and social life will need to change. EAC Peer Advisors have successfully made this transition, and are your best resource for your first year.

Peer advisors are upperclass students in a variety of engineering departments who have been trained to help first-year students choose courses, register for classes, and understand the policies and procedures of the College. More importantly, as students, peer advisors have a personal insight into life at the University of Michigan. They can answer questions about professors, majors, student organizations, and campus life in general. Peer advisors are a terrific resource for first year students. Along with academic advisors, they can assist you in making your transition to college as smooth as possible.

Mia Aavik

Peer Advisor

Hi! I’m Mia Aavik, and I’m from Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, and I’m studying Industrial and Operations Engineering. On campus, I’m involved with New Life Church, I’m an RA in Mary Markley Hall, I mentor freshmen through the CoE Peer Mentor Program, I am involved in ergonomics research, and I enjoy playing IM sports with my friends! When I’m not at work or studying, you can find me hammocking, reading, drinking tea, or exploring outdoors. I’m not sure what I want to do with my future, but I know I’ll be finding new adventures along the way!

Bethany Demarco

Peer Advisor

I am a sophomore from Brighton, MI studying Material Science and Engineering. I am involved in several community service projects and I am also a member of the Michigan Marching and University Bands. I love hiking with my pet husky and discovering new indie music artists. I hope to pursue a career in which I will be able to apply my skills to help people across the globe.

Mackenzie Horton

Peer Advisor

Mackenzie is a rising senior studying Chemical Engineering. She is originally from Howell, MI and loves to dance and sing. On campus she is involved in Concrete Canoe, Society of Women Engineers, and New Movement dance team. She loves to travel and is trying to go to one new place per year.

David Hao

Peer Advisor

My name is Eric Hao and I'm from the peaceful city of Novi, Michigan. I'm currently a sophomore studying computer science. I enjoy reading about new technologies and playing computer games in my free time. On campus, I'm on the Assisted Vision project team through the Multidisciplinary Design Program. My favorite sports team would have to be the Detroit Red Wings. In the future, I hope to eventually go to graduate school for either computer science or business.

Gaurav Hosur

Peer Advisor

Hi, my name is Gaurav Hosur, and I am a junior studying Chemical Engineering. I am from Montgomery, Alabama. On campus, I am involved with research and Model United Nations. One fun fact about me is that the first time I saw real snow was winter of my freshman year. In the future, I hope to pursue a job in the industry upon graduation.

Malcom Hudson

Peer Advisor

Hey! I'm Malcolm Hudson and I'm a rising junior studying Industrial and Operations Engineering. I'm from a town called San Isidro in Argentina, which is less than an hour away from the city of Buenos Aires. I'm a part of the Michigan International Students Society and I'm a member of the University's triathlon team. My plan for the future is not definite right now but I'm interested in going into the field of consulting, while (hopefully) still having time to train for and race triathlons.

Henry Huelskamp

Peer Advisor

My name is Henry Huelskamp and I am a sophomore studying Chemical Engineering who was was raised in Lansing MI. In high school I played water polo and was a member of our concert and marching band. Currently I am a highly involved member of the Michigan Marching Band in which I play the Tuba. I am also a member of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE). In the future I hope to be able to earn a PhD and teach at Michigan.

Jess Jana

Peer Advisor

Hi, I'm Jess! I am a junior studying Chemical Engineering with minors in International Engineering and Biochemistry. I grew up just down the road in Canton, Michigan but Ann Arbor has always felt like home. This year I also have an internship through my church, St. Mary Student Parish, and I am involved in several of the programs there because I love the people and the atmosphere. One day I hope to end up in biotechnology or food engineering. Nothing will ever fulfill my sweet tooth, so why not spend a lifetime pursuing it with my engineering degree?

Emma Mallon

Peer Advisor

I am Junior from Hartland, MI. On campus, I volunteer with student recruitment through the Student Ambassador Program, and I volunteer with blood services through the American Red Cross Club. I am a Peer Mentor for incoming freshmen through the College of Engineering’s Mentorship Program. I am the fundraising chair and a member of the Michigan Pompon Team. In my free time I attend sporting events including Michigan Hockey, Michigan Football, Detroit Tigers, and Detroit Red Wings. Once I graduate I plan on doing product development with biomedical devices and orthopedic implants. I hope to receive a Ph. D. and become a professor at University of Michigan.

Dilara Meli

Peer Advisor

Hi, I'm Dilara. I'm an international student from Switzerland and I'll be a sophomore during the 2017/18 academic year. Aside from being a PA I enjoy doing research, I'm a site leader for Michigan Active Citizens--Alternative Spring Break (MAC-ASB), and I'm a part of Student Advisory Group on Engagement (SAGE). Fun fact, I speak four languages and I'm eager to learn more! I see myself getting a PhD sometime in the future, because I want to do research and teach.

Abby Ranks

Peer Advisor

Hi! My name is Abby Ranks and I am from Novi, Michigan. During my first two years on campus, I was a part of Women in Science and Engineering Residence Program (WISE RP) and Kgrams, a pen pal program for students living in the dorms and local elementary kids. Currently, I am involved with the Tech Day planning committee and Alternative Spring Break at St. Mary’s Student Parish. The most fun experience I have had in college was studying abroad in Madrid, Spain for six weeks the summer after my first year! In the future, I hope to find a career where I can put my knowledge of chemical engineering to good use by helping people.

Michael Vanderzwaag

Peer Advisor

My name is Michael VanderZwaag and I’m a senior from Rochester, New York studying Chemical Engineering. Outside of the classroom, I’m president of the Food Industry Student Association (FISA) and a pitcher on the club baseball team. I’m also the #1 customer for Happy’s Pizza. After graduation, I hope to work in the food or consumer products industry.

Mike Zheng

Peer Advisor

Hi! My name is Mike Zheng, junior, studying mechanical engineering. I hail from the land of the Buckeyes (don't worry, I bleed maize and blue). I am involved in research at the Auto Lab and was a Peer Mentor for the Michigan Research Community. In my free time, I love to draw and am a part of MDraw. Of course, I also love Netflix (Current favorite show: New Girl). Fun fact, my guilty pleasures are some JB songs circa 2012 and onward as well as Pokemon.