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The First Year Mentors (FYMs) are upper-class student leaders who are here to support new students and their transition to Pitt. We have 24 FYMs working  throughout the summer to plan fun and exciting activities to help you get connected during PittStart and Orientation. During Fall and Spring semesters, the FYMs will be planning and promoting campus events to make sure your first year at Pitt is outstanding!

 Apply NOW to be a First Year Mentor!

  First Year Mentor Application


Dakota Dakota Kolbe, Head First Year Mentor

Dakota is currently a sophomore in the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences. He is a Molecular Biology major with a minor in Chemistry and certificates in Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies as well as Conceptual Foundations of Medicine. He hopes to go on to graduate school to become a Genetic Counselor. He chose Pitt because of their Genetic Counseling Program, and its connection to the city. Dakota is involved in the Rainbow Alliance, Emerging Leaders, and is a Freshman Programs UTA. He became an FYM because he wanted to be able to help incoming freshman transition and make the most of their freshman year. As a foodie Dakota's favorite part of freshman year was discovering all of the great places to eat in Pittsburgh with his friends.

Gabrielle Arguello-Abramson

Hi everybody! My name is Gabrielle Arguello and I am a senior Social Work major with a minor in Africana Studies (Multidisciplinary track). My plan is to go on and get a Dual Masters degree in Public Health and a Masters in Social Work. I'm originally from Maryland, (Go Ravens!) and graduated in 2013 from Atholton High School.
My first semester at Pitt was rocky to say the least and entering college is scary but it's a lot more amazing than it first seems. But I'm so incredibly happy that I picked Pitt because there is so much I'm still learning about Pitt and I want to help incoming students get connected to what will make their Pitt experience the best !
I currently dabble and am involved in volunteering with Homeless Children's Education Fund and Jubilee Soup Kitchen as well as being a student leader with Hillel JUC and I am a member of Be the Match.
I chose Pitt because when it's the school that made me the most excited about academics and learning as well as all the opportunities!
A memory from my Freshman year: Meeting my three best friends from the snowboard team!

Shay Booker Shay Booker

Profile coming soon...

Caitlin Budd Caitlin Budd

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Corinne Dodel

7M9A2188Hello everyone! My name is Corinne Dodel and I am a Junior at the University of Pittsburgh, majoring in Psychology. I am from Langhorne, Pennsylvania, a town north of Philadelphia. I graduated from Mount Saint Joseph Academy in 2013, attended Bucks County Community College for a semester, and transferred here fall of 2014.


Choosing to come to Pitt is a decision I have not regretted once since I stepped onto campus. Pitt has become my home and I am proud to call myself a Panther. My time here at Pitt has been wonderful and I can’t wait to share my experiences with you all during Orientation Week. I am excited to work with you all this year as your Head First Year Mentor. Please feel free to approach me with any questions you may have or just to chat! I look forward to meeting you all!


Hail to Pitt!

Bella Esposito Bella Esposito

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Laura Gooding Laura Gooding

Laura GoodingProfile coming soon...

Cailyn Hall Cailyn Hall

Cailyn HallProfile coming soon...

Ashley J Ashley Janosko

Hi everyone! My name is Ashley Janosko and I will be a Junior this coming fall. I am in the Swanson School of Engineering pursuing a Chemical Engineering degree with a minor in French and a concentration in Polymer Chemistry. Other than being a First Year Mentor, I am also a Peer Mentor in the engineering organization, PittEXCEL, and the Secretary of Pitt French Club.


When I took my first tour of Pitt, I fell in love; I knew I would go to school here. Seeing the Cathedral of Learning every day and living on Forbes Avenue just felt right. The main reason I chose to come to Pitt, though, is because of the people. I found everyone on campus to be friendly and welcoming. I hope that as a First Year Mentor, I get to become one of these people that gets people really excited about coming to Pitt. I have endless stories to tell (like that one time I fell face first on the side of Forbes Avenue, spilling a milkshake all over myself) and advice to give. I can’t wait to get to meet everyone!



Sloane Kozyak Sloane Kozyak

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Michelle Lao Michelle Lao

Michelle LaoProfile coming soon...

Claire Le Gall Claire Le Gall

Claire Le GallProfile coming soon...

Mora Lucero Mora Lucero

Hi everyone! My name is Mora Lucero and I am from Wexford, PA which is about 25 minutes north of Pitt. I am an incoming junior studying Psychology and Sociology with an intent to minor in Teacher Education. Alongside being a First Year Mentor, I am involved in intramural soccer, and I am a member of one of Pitt’s service fraternities, Epsilon Sigma Alpha. Like a majority of the students here, I am a regular fanatic of the Panther Pitt and Oakland Zoo—I’m the one going crazy during a touchdown dance and jumping up and down throwing newspaper.
I had two requirements on my list as I was deciding where to attend college. Number One, location. The location of our campus could not be anymore perfect, from downtown to the Waterfront just short drives away. And Number two, food. One of my favorite activities here is to eat, and I could not be happier attending a university in a city ranked the No. 1 food city on Pitt has always been my first choice, and I have never regretted my decision. I hope to share my energy and love for Pitt among everyone I meet, so feel free to ask me any questions you may have. Good times never seemed so good, so get pumped and


Hail to Pitt!

Clayton Lyons Clayton Lyons

Hi everyone! My name is Clayton Lyons, and although I was born and raised in the Pittsburgh area, I am still discovering new things about Oakland and the city everyday. I will be a junior in the fall and am a Neuroscience major with a double minor in Chemistry and History, along with a Certificate in the Foundations of Modern Medicine. Outside of the classroom, and in addition to my role as an FYM, I am the Business Manager for the Panther Curefinders Club, an Undergraduate Teaching Assistant, a volunteer at UPMC Shadyside with the HELP program, an undergraduate researcher studying Alzheimer’s Disease, and a volunteer at the Jubilee Soup Kitchen.


When I first began looking at colleges, Pitt was not my first choice. And although I had a difficult time adjusting to college life, I now love Pitt and could not imagine myself being anywhere else. My freshman year was a fantastic experience for many reasons, but my favorite part of Pitt so far has been all of the amazing people I have been privileged to meet. In addition to the people, Pitt is bursting with opportunities and can open doors for you that you never even knew existed. I can’t wait to show you everything Pitt has to offer and kick-start what I know will be some of the best years of your life! Hail to Pitt!

Madhu Mahesh

Hi! My name is Madhu Mahesh and I'm going to be a sophomore. I'm majoring in Applied Developmental Psych with a certificate in GSWS. I'm a part of the Pitt Art club and hope to be a part of dance teams on campus next year. I became an FYM to meet new people and make connections. I chose Pitt because I love the urban location and all that it offers along with the opportunities that a big school affords. My favorite part of first year was meeting new people and making new lifelong friends.

7M9A2191 Alyson Menzies

Hi! My name is Alyson Menzies. I am currently a junior at Pitt, and studying Applied Developmental Psychology. On campus, I am a First Year Mentor, Field Trip Coordinator of Strong Women Strong Girls, and a member of Alpha Phi Omega (a service fraternity). Coming from a small country town, the main appeal of Pitt was the city atmosphere and the easy access to get around the city.
As a freshman, I was not paired with the roommate I requested. I was so scared that I wasn’t going to make friends. However, a girl on my floor had a bunch of us over to her room to hang out that first weekend. After that, I met three of my best friends on campus. I was lucky enough to meet my friends by being on the same floor as them. However, I became a First Year Mentor to help others overcome the struggle of making friends, as it is hard when you first get to campus.

Deanna Moore Deanna Moore

Profile coming soon...

7M9A2195 Maharsi Naidu

Hello! My name is Maharsi Naidu and I am a rising senior here at Pitt. I am studying Economics and Health Services through both the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences as well as the College of General Studies. In my time at Pitt, I have been involved with Residence Life and Delta Sigma Phi Fraternity.
I chose Pitt because of the family-like atmosphere. For such a large student body, it seemed like everyone knew one another, and this bond created a very welcoming environment. I can say, after three years on Pitt campus, I have never felt more at home. From spending days out in Schenley Park to nights watching with my residence hall floor community, I am always making memories. Pitt has helped me not only learn so much about my fields of study but also has helped me grow as a person. As an FYM, I hope to show students all that Pitt has to offer in hopes that they begin to love it just as much as I do. H2P!

Erin O'connor Erin O'conner

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Noah Rubin Noah Rubin

Noah RubinProfile coming soon...

7M9A2176 Apara Sharma

Hey everyone! I'm Apara Sharma and I'll be a sophomore this fall. I plan on double majoring in Communications and Studio Arts with a minor in Creative Writing. In addition to FYM, I'm the social chair on Pitt Zisha, the only all-women premier fusion dance team on campus.
The reason I became an FYM is because I initially found Pitt extremely intimidating as a freshman, and I want to be able to make the newcomers feel as comfortable as possible so they can enjoy the adventure that is freshman year!


I grew up in the city and the suburbs of Pittsburgh, but I still find new things I love about Pittsburgh all the time. Pitt was my top pick and I am in love with it.
My favorite part of freshman year was meeting my best friends and developing the friendships I have today. I can't wait for the years to come, and I'm excited for you to feel the same way. H2P!

7M9A2170copy John Sigg

Hello everybody! My name is John Sigg and I am a sophomore at Pitt. I am a hometown kid, born and raised in Monroeville, Pennsylvania. I went to high school in Oakland at Pittsburgh Central Catholic. Throughout my high school years I became very familiar with the Oakland area and I knew that Pitt was my number one choice for sure. I intend on graduating in the spring of 2019 with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering as well as a minor in Mathematics.


Currently on campus, I am a member of Engineering a Better Mind and Body, a club my freshman year floor made to help starting engineers build both a strong academic standing and a healthy lifestyle. I also participate in intramural soccer. My freshman year was a rollercoaster ride of experiences, but my utmost joy came from the group of students I lived with my freshman year. The Engineering LLC (Living Learning Community) in Forbes Hall provided me with a living arrangement that supported learning while also making strong friendships. I hope to use my freshman year experiences as a personal motivator to be the best FYM that I can be. I aim to show incoming students that Pitt is here to guide them through both a fun and successful journey. I am very excited to help you with that journey, and as always, H2P!

Caitlin Steve Caitlin Steve

Profile coming soon...

7M9A2158 copy Ben Zwang

Hey everyone, my name is Benjamin Zwang and I am from Rockland County, New York. I am a senior majoring in Human Resources Management with a certificate in International Business in the College of Business Administration. I am a brother of Beta Theta Pi, a social fraternity here at Pitt, and I currently serve as Vice President of Omicron Delta Kappa leadership honors society. I’ve also completed the Emerging Leaders program, am a member of the OCC Honorary Society, attended the Hesselbein Global Academy and studied abroad in London, United Kingdom.


The University of Pittsburgh has given me the opportunity to grow as a leader through its investment in the students, which is why I love attending this school. I wanted to be a First Year Mentor to share my love of Pitt with incoming first year students, to show them the opportunities that the university has to offer. This orientation week will be the best one yet and I couldn’t be more excited to help foster first year student’s friendships with each other and their relationship with our school.


Hail to Pitt.