Meet the College of Sciences Student Ambassadors 

Student ambassadors standing next to each other at an India Center event

In the Summer 2022 semester, the College of Sciences selected 11 students from different COS majors to represent the college as student ambassadors. Their role is to represent the students across COS by engaging with the student body and working with the dean to serve students.  

To learn more about this new program, we spoke with Associate Lecturer Michelle Dusseau, Ph.D., the COS Faculty Fellow for Undergraduate Student Engagement, and Associate Dean Teresa Dorman, Ed.D. As part of her role as Faculty Fellow, Dusseau oversees the new ambassador program and with input from the ambassadors themselves, she is developing the program into what it is today.  

A New Era in the Student Experience 

For several years, the college considered ideas to better and directly engage with students, and additional interest from the College of Sciences Student Government Association senators advanced the ideas to reality. Conversations between Dorman and Dean Maggy Tomova, Ph.D. put the plan into motion. 

Dorman shared that while the program is unique to COS, it was modeled after the College of Business’ ambassador program and the President’s Leadership Council.  

She explained how the ambassadors serve as active representatives of our students by working with College of Sciences leadership by providing their valuable insight on ways to improve the student experience.  

So, why would a student want to be an ambassador? The skills they practice as ambassadors can translate into their future careers—and their experiences will give them memories for years to come.  

The Job Description of an Ambassador

The ambassadors have the opportunity to work together while representing the more than 14,000 students who call COS home. They serve at events, work with the dean and help to create a greater sense of community across the college. The ambassadors provide a direct path between the dean and student body through their role on the dean’s advisory board. They present issues or positive experiences that their peers are having to educate College of Sciences leadership on the student experience and areas of potential growth.  

The opportunities will continue to grow as the program evolves.  

“Everything you’re building will be the foundation for the ambassadors of the future.”

Associate Lecturer Michelle Dusseau, Ph.D.

Learn more about the program here.

Ambassador Highlights from Fall 2022 

In November 2022, the ambassadors represented COS at Knight at the Musuem, an event bringing the local community together to explore UCF’s role in returning to the moon. At the event, they had the opportunity to meet other COS students and supporters while welcoming attendees. 

They also had the chance to participate in other events including the Dean’s Inaugural State of the College Breakfast, where one ambassador provided welcoming remarks and all had the opportunity to interact with college supporters and alumni. They also served at the India Center’s Evening with Kal Penn event, where ambassadors escorted VIP attendees from parking to the event before interacting with other guests and enjoying the event as participants.  

Meet the Ambassadors 

Naomi Battle  

Hometown: Fort Myers, Florida  

Major: General Psychology 

Dream Job: Social psychology researcher  

Scott Buksbaum 

Hometown: Howard Beach, New York and Tampa, Florida  

Major: Psychology and Biomedical Sciences 

Dream Job: Health administration or policy 

Nefertari Elshiekh 

Hometown: New York, New York 

Major: International and Global Studies 

Dream Job: Lawyer  

Kaila Garton-Miller 

Hometown: Pembroke Pines, Florida  

Major: Human Communication 

Dream Job: Marketing manager  

Jessica Maco-Rodriguez 

Homepage: North Lauderdale, Florida  

Major: Forensic Science 

Dream job: Crime scene investigator 

Meril Manoj 

Hometown: Pembroke Pines, Florida  

Major: Biology 

Dream Job: Endodontist  

Puja Shambhag 

Hometown: Orlando, Florida  

Major: Biology 

Professional Goal: Medical school 

Andrea Vasquez 

Hometown: Pembroke Pines, Florida 

Major: Biology 

Dream Job: Wildlife veterinarian  

Raynaliz C. Velazquez Feliciano 

Hometown: Aguadilla, Puerto Rico 

Major: Anthropology 

Dream Job: Archaeologist  

Ingrid Whitelocke 

Hometown: Boca Raton 

Major: Biology 

Dream Job: Physician 

Rebecca Wilson 

Hometown: Boca Raton 

Major: Forensic Science 

Dream Job: Medical examiner  

Keep up with Ambassador News 

Throughout the semester, the ambassadors will be introducing themselves and sharing more about the exciting things they’re doing on the College of Sciences social media.  

Make sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!  

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