Michigan College Advising Corps
Ottawa Hills High School
Abbie Barondess is an MCAC college advisor who is passionate about building meaningful relationships and helping students build confidence in order to achieve their goals, both academic and personal. During her time at U-M she worked as a tutor for student athletes, a study group facilitator, and a writing fellow, where she helped to guide students in their academic endeavors. She is excited to continue working with students and grow alongside them as an adviser. Abbie is excited to work with a great team of advisers and students this upcoming year.
Jalen Rose Leadership Academy
Aliya Spotts is the college advisor at Jalen Rose Leadership Academy for the Michigan College Advising Corps. She also had an MCAC college advisor when she was in high school, which inspired her to give back to the community. Her role involves assisting students with filling out college applications and FAFSA applications. She also organizes campus visits to colleges, college representatives visits, and college fair events at JRLA. She has worked with DCAN to help organize college events for other schools in the Detroit area.
Holland High School
Angelo Vozza promotes college-going culture and supports the students of Holland High School as they plan for life after high school. As a member of the Michigan College Advising Corps, he acts as a resource for high school seniors as they explore different post-secondary options, write applications, and apply for financial aid and scholarships. He works to make college more accessible to first-generation college and underrepresented high school students.
A proud alumnus of FIRST Robotics, Angelo also has a passion for engaging young people with science and technology; he has continued his involvement in FIRST as a mentor for high school robotics teams. Angelo holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering in Computer Science from the University of Michigan.
Battle Creek Central High School
Breanna Gilland currently serves as a college adviser at Battle Creek Central High School where she is a resource for all things related to college access and post-secondary opportunities. Breanna is passionate about bridging the gap for students typically underrepresented in higher education, and equipping them with all they need to enroll in college or other post-secondary opportunities and develop a toolkit that will ensure they are successful in college. She strives to empower students to advocate for themselves, and explore multiple routes to their goals.
Breanna previously worked as a resident advisor for two years, where she created programming to foster an inclusive community in her hall, and connected underclassmen to resources on campus in hopes they would find a home at the University of Michigan. She also spent two summers interning for the Turn 2 Foundation, supporting their youth development program, Kalamazoo Jeter’s Leaders. Breanna oversaw summer volunteering opportunities, was responsible for conducting new member orientations and assisted the Director with conference planning/execution.
Breanna is a graduate of the University of Michigan with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a minor in Community Action and Social change.
César Chávez Academy High School
Christopher Camacho serves as a Michigan College Advising Corps adviser and is currently placed in Detroit, Michigan at César Chávez Academy. During his time at Michigan, he involved himself in advocating for the Latinix community creating educational, cultural, and social spaces for minority students to strive in mentorship and community service. Additionally, he was committed to encouraging student engagement and unity through his involvement in Lambda Theta Phi Latin Fraternity Inc., Multicultural Greek Council, and other student campus programs. His desire for service learning led him to volunteer in multiple schools in Ann Arbor and Detroit where he participated in engaging and teaching important social skills, and tutoring students. His service in his community pushed him to join the Michigan College Advising Corps in pursuit of becoming a mentor for male students of color to advocate for the importance and possibility of postsecondary education.
Flint Southwestern Classical Academy
Christine Rogers is a graduate from the University of Michigan with a bachelors in African and Afro-American Studies. Her passion for diversity, equity, and inclusion allows her to effectively serve students in underserved communities by talking a social justice approach to her mentoring and coaching.
She grew up in Detroit, MI on the westside of the city. She loves her city because of the culture that Detroit bring to the state of Michigan. She graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in African and Afro- American Studies. Her passion for becoming a college advisor stems from her experiences as a first generation college student and the struggles that she experienced because of that. I went to a predominately black school that didn’t have many resources. She had to learn how to seek out help which was hard for someone who was used to being independent. She is excited to work with the students and community to help continue to create a sustainable college going culture.
Western International High School
Daniel Vargas-Leon, a graduate of U-M in 2018 and his 2nd year working with MCAC. He has also worked with the Center for Educational Outreach for about 5 years, in the Future U, College 101, Ready Set Go Blue, and Camp Kinomage programs, among others.
Ypsilanti Community High School
Dasha Peppard advises students on college and career options and guides them through the application process.
Dasha majored in Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience. Her academic and research focus is on how positive psychology impacts physiology and well-being. Through the Center for Positive Organizations Dasha assisted in the curriculum design of Magnify, a Positive Organizational Scholarship immersion program. She co-authored a quantitative and qualitative study on the program’s impact on the engaged learning, self-agency, and well-being of its students. As a peer coach in the program Dasha advised and managed teams of student consultants to improve employee engagement and satisfaction at organizations such as General Motors and Michigan Medicine.
As a Research Assistant in the Language and Literacy Lab, Dasha studied the effects of bilingualism on brain anatomy. In the English Language Institute, she coached international PhD students on their English use, non-verbal communication, and lesson delivery.
Saginaw High School
Greg Lockett is a recent U of M grad, currently working as an MCAC advisor at Saginaw High School. His goal is to help as many students as possible make informed decisions about their post secondary plans. During his time at the University of Michigan, Greg was committed to mentoring and inspiring students through his work with Intellectual Minds Making a Difference, and America Reads. He realizes the effect that an experienced mentor can have when making big life decisions, and hopes to inspire more people going forward.
Eastern High School
Kim Truong is a graduate from the University of Michigan with a B.A. in Sociology. She dedicated her undergraduate career to education policy and research, but is currently exploring education careers with direct service to students and schools. She will be serving this year at Eastern High School in Lansing as a Michigan College Advising Corps adviser for students.
Jackson High School
Kwesi Awotwi is an up-and-coming college adviser, a position that demands a passionate approach to college access by guiding financial aid, enrollment and admissions processes for underrepresented students. This position exists across the nation and has successfully proved positive results year after year.
Chandler Park Academy High School
J.W. Sexton High School
Victoria Thach currently serves as the college adviser at J.W. Sexton High School. As an alumna of J.W. Sexton and inspired by her own college adviser, she is excited to give back to her community by serving low income, first generation, and underrepresented students through advising. Throughout her undergraduate years, she has been involved within the realm of social justice through various organizations such as the Vietnamese Student Association, Alpha Chi Sigma, and Asian/Pacific Islander American High School Conference. Through these roles, she gained skills in planning events, intergroup dialogues, and sharing experiences. As a Vietnamese American and proud first generation student, she is passionate about creating access to post secondary education to underserved and underrepresented students.
Victoria holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and minored in Community, Action, and Social Change and Asian/Pacific Islander American Studies.
Pontiac High School
Williamena Kwapo is a graduate of the University of Michigan with a major in Organizational Studies. She is serving as College Adviser at Pontiac High School. Williamena enjoys working with non-profits that impacts the lives of youths and young adults. While at University of Michigan, she worked as Peer Adviser and then a Residents Adviser in housing. She hopes to use all she has learned about fostering and building relationships at the University of Michigan to be able to create a positive environment in Pontiac High School that sets students up for success in their journey to higher education.