Current Mentors

The 2019-2020 Success Mentor Team


Connie Balbuena

Digital Media Intern

4th Year, Public Health Major

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA 

Fun Fact: Animal and coffee lover! 

Career Aspiration: Founder of non-profit organization 

 

 


Mary Baltazar

Peer Mentor and Lead Instructor 

3rd Year, Mechanical Engineering Major

Hometown: North Hollywood, CA 

Fun Fact: Self-proclaimed Beyoncé stan! 

Career Aspiration: Aerospace engineer 

 


Angelica Costilla

 Logistics Coordinator 

4th Year, English and Sociology Major

Hometown: Madera, CA

Fun Fact: Loves to perform spoken word and go to hip-hop shows with friends! 

 

 


Stephany Covarrubias

Peer Mentor and Lead Instructor

4th Year, Sociology Major, NSED Minor

Hometown: Merced, CA

Fun Fact: Loves things that give her an adrenaline rush!

Career Aspiration: Helping first-generation students in educational achievement and attainment


Melanie Friz

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

2nd Year, Sociology Major

Hometown: San Fernando Valley, CA 

Fun Fact: Likes to dip her fries in mayonnaise!

Career Aspiration: Social worker for foster youth

 

 


Vanessa Gallegos Martinez

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

4th Year, Psychology Major, Sociology Minor

Hometown: Santa Cruz, CA

Fun Fact: Loves hiking and going to the beach! 

Career Aspiration: Interested in graduate school and working with children 


Jose Garcia-Guerrero

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

2nd Year, Psychology Major

Hometown: Merced, CA

Fun Fact: Played soccer and wrestled before! 

Career Aspiration: Physician Assistant 

 


Orlando Gillam III

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

4th Year, Psychology Major

Hometown: Houston, TX

Fun Fact: Enjoys designing clothes and listening to music in his spare time! 

Career Aspiration: Interested in Neuropsychology 


Omar Gonzalez

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

4th Year, History and Critical Race and Ethnic Studies Major

Hometown: Santa Ana, CA

Fun Fact: Knows his alphabet backwards and believes tortas are better than sandwiches! 

Career Aspiration: History or CRES professor at Research University


Paula Izaguirre Salguero 

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

3rd Year, Public Health Major

Hometown: Mountain View, CA

Fun Fact: Loves to sing! She was in chorus in elementary and middle school! 

Career Aspiration: Nurse

 

 


Joshua "Mac" Jones

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

2nd Year, Management and Business Economics Major, Political Science Minor

Hometown: Sacramento, CA

Fun Fact: Serves as UC Merced's Residence Hall Association President!

Career Aspiration: Attorney 


Sammy Khadder

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

3rd Year, Management and Business Economics Major

Hometown: San Jose, CA

Fun Fact: Photographer and enjoys playing the guitar! 

Career Aspiration: Financial Planner


Tyler Krogh

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

4th Year, Human Biology Major

Hometown: Norco, CA

Fun Fact: Learned how to ride a horse before a bicycle!

Career Aspiration: Medical Professional

 


Armando Lupian

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

3rd Year, Political Science Major

Hometown: Orosi, CA

Fun Fact: Has met Leonardo DiCaprio!

Career Aspiration: Prosecution Attorney 

 

 


Harweese Marshall

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

3rd Year, Management and Business Economics Major

Hometown: Antioch, CA

Fun Fact: This past summer, she read 6 books and learned how to knit! 

 

 


Aldo Montes Sanchez

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

4th Year, Management and Business Economics Major, Psychology and Public Health Minor

Hometown: Mountain View, CA

Fun Fact: Has the best Mickey Mouse impression! 

Career Aspiration: Sales Director 

Camryn Melanson

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

4th Year, Psychology Major, Sociology and Writing Minor

Hometown: Sacramento, CA

Fun Fact: Likes to write poetry! 

Career Aspiration: Professor 

 


Justin Naidu

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

2nd Year, Sociology Major 

Hometown: Fairfield, CA

Fun Fact: Loves listening to Kpop! 

 

 

 

 

 


Amy Pimentel

Peer Mentor 

3rd Year, Public Health, NSED Minor

Hometown: Pasadena, CA

Fun Fact: Loves to go to the gym and practice self-care! 

Career Aspiration: Researcher in Public Health 

 

 


Diana Ramirez

Events Coordinator 

4th Year, Management and Business Economics Major, Political Science Minor

Hometown: Santa Cruz, CA

Fun Fact: Had a summer job at amusement park!

Career Aspiration: Interested in being a resource for underrepresented communities


Yesenia Ramirez Sigala

Peer Mentor and Lead Instructor 

3rd Year, Sociology Major

Hometown: Ceres, CA

Fun Fact: Loves dancing and painting!

Career Aspiration: Interested in Student Affairs with Higher Education Institutions

 

 


Arturo Raudales

Lead Instructor 

3rd Year, English Major 

Hometown: Echo Park, LA, CA

Fun Fact: Into home decor, especially minimalistic and monochromatic looks! 

Career Aspiration: Student Affairs/ Higher Education. Interested in working with students of color

 


Victoria Rico

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

3rd Year, Political Science Major

Hometown: Anaheim, CA

Fun Fact: Has dyed her hair every single color of the rainbow!

Career Aspiration: Student Affairs, especially low-income and first-generation student programs


Elizabeth Sanchez 

Media Coordinator 

4th Year, Public Health Major, Psychology Minor 

Hometown: West Covina, CA 

Fun Fact: Has two puppies named Fish and Chip! 

Career Aspiration: Higher Education Administration


Alaika Valera

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

3rd Year, Political Science and Psychology Major

Hometown: Merced, CA

Fun Fact: Has three dogs: Nikki, Tiger, and Boogie!

Career Aspiration: Attorney 

 

Guadalupe Vazquez

Peer Mentor and Instructor

2nd Year, Critical Race and Ethnic Studies 

Hometown: Mountain View, CA

Fun Fact: Accidentally shaved her left eyebrow off when she was ten-years old! 

Career Aspiration: Interested in helping marginalized communities through social work, research, and activism 

 

Joseline Velasquez

Development Coordinator

5th Year, Human Biology, Psychology Minor

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA

Fun Fact: Can make animal balloons! 

 

 

 

Keanu Velasquez 

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

3rd Year, Sociology Major 

Hometown: San Francisco, CA

Fun Fact: Has slid down a volcano during a service trip in Nicaragua! 

Career Aspiration: Enjoys community outreach and working with youth 

Brooke Wilson

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

2nd Year, Human Biology Major 

Hometown: Fairfax, CA

Fun Fact: Has five sibilings!

Career Aspiration: Pediatrician

 

 

Izza Belle Ygnalaga

Peer Mentor and Instructor 

2nd Year, Cognitive Science Major

Hometown: Napa, CA

Fun Fact: Built her own electric skateboard to save herself from walking up the hill everyday! 

Career Aspiration: Interested in research, specifically in mental health illnesses. She would like to work in first handedly with patients in state hospitals