Meet some of our Mentors
Lobo Friends Mentoring Program Coordinator:
Ivet has been the Program Coordinator since January 2016. She is currently working on her Doctoral degree in Educational Leadership from the College of Education. She loves working with the international community in New Mexico and strongly encourages anyone who would like to gain cultural knowledge and make international friends to join the Lobo Friends program.
Name: Emily Ediger
Languages spoken:English and a very small amount of French
Concentrations: Communication and Journalism, Cultural Anthropology (year: senior)
Favorite place on Campus: The willow tree at the duck pond/Duck Pond
Places I’ve traveled: I studied abroad in Sheffield, England, and while I was there I traveled to other parts of England as well as Germany, Ireland, France, Spain, Italy, Austria, and Greece.
My advice for incoming students is to not let school-related stress bog you down. Make sure to take breaks to have fun when you can. College is an experience and the classroom is only one part of it. No matter where you are, take time to explore and travel with friends.
Fun fact: Recent finished applications to masters programs in the UK. Fingers crossed!
Picture: (me, eating gelato in Florence)
Name: Rebecca Prinster
Languages spoken:English and Italian
Favorite place on Campus: The patio outside the Honors College (or the Fine Arts Library if the weather's bad)
Places traveled: Half of all U.S. states, Italy, Spain, France, Portugal
Advice: Don't be afraid to talk to people in your classes or around campus, even if you think your English isn't that great; you never know when you'll make a friend.
Khandakar Nusrat Islam
Name: Khandakar Nusrat Islam
Language(s) spoken (if any):Bengali(Native), English, Spanish(Little bit), Arabic(Only can read), German (Learning)
Concentration(s): Electrical Engineering major in Electromagnetics and Power as well
Favorite place on Campus: Duck Pond, Engineering Library
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:I like traveling. I've already visited more than 15 states of US within three years I came here. I've visited almost most of the points of interest in in New Mexico such as New Mexico Legislature, Bandelier National Monument, Valles Caldera National Preserve, Sandia Peak tramway, Sandia mountains(I did hike all the way up to the Sandia Crest which was fantastic walk), Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, White Sand National Monument, Carlsbad Cavern National Park, Los Alamos National Museum of Nuclear Science, Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, Petroglyph National Monument, ABQ Biopark Botanic Garden, Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi(commonly known as Saint Francis Cathedral), Tingley beach, Cochiti Lake, Phantom Lake etc.
Advice for Incoming Students: No matter whare you are from--this is your campus and UNM would be the start of your dreams ! Explore around yours and get involved as soon as possible on campus, student organizations and other social organizations; understand the academic systems and work on it! Extend yourself as much as you can but don't do anything that makes you feel uncomfortable! Set goals and keep track of your progress! As an international student , please don't be afraid to ask anything to GEO. Don't place any academic/immigration decision without inquiring GEO! Be adventurous, try something new, meet new people, make new friendship. Have lots of fun. Life is beautiful☻
Language(s) spoken (if any):Mandarin
Favorite place on Campus: Johnson Gym
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:Ive travelled to Florida, New York, Califonia and Mexico I'm the only one lives in foreign country of my whole family, and my family always worried about my safety anytime they watch TV the news about America's shooting or natural disaster
Advice for Incoming Students: Do not only stay at home or the library, going out, meeting people, and experience as much as you can!!!
Language(s) spoken (if any):Spanish and English
Favorite place on Campus: SUB
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:I am from Colombia and have a twin sister also studying at UNM. I enjoy road trips with friends; last summer I traveled with other international students to Mexico. It was amazing.
Advice for Incoming Students: Enjoy every and each of your days in UNM and US. Don't waste time, travel, study and go out there are tons of fun things to do.
Language(s) spoken (if any):Spanish
Concentration(s):Development economics, Latin American topics , comparative politics
Favorite place on campus:Fine Arts Library
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself: I studied Spanish in Ecuador then when my program ended I traveled to Peru, Bolivia and Argentina. I also was about to work as an intern in Nicaragua where I learned I enjoyed working abroad.
Advice for Incoming Students:I think all students should pursue their interests and branch out to have new experiences, for me this was study abroad. Being on a university campus we have the opportunity to network with professors who have more information, but more importantly other students. If your curious about something find out more!
Sayf Ben Fraj
Name:Sayf Ben Fraj
Language(s) spoken (if any):Tunisian Arabic, Arabic, French, English
Concentration(s):I am currently working as a project manager and going to school for an electrical engineering degree with a power track
Favorite place on Campus:I am currently working as a project manager and going to school for an electrical engineering degree with a power track
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:I traveled quit a lot after my first bachelor degree. I have been to turkey, Germany (for 2 days 😝), France, Portugal and a couple of state in the US. I would love to visit Mexico city this summer. A fun fact about my self: I will sum it up with a quote "Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking"
Advice for Incoming Students: if you want improvements in your life and future. don't be afraid to try new things. You must be willing to sacrifice the old for new and take risks in life.
Language(s) spoken (if any):Arabic - French & English
Concentration(s):Master's degree in Computer Engineering
Favorite place on Campus:Student Union Building
Places you’ve traveled:Arizona - New York - New Orleans & Washington DC
A fun fact about yourself: Eat too much but look skinny!
Advice for Incoming Students:Live your American experience to the fullest, enjoy every single day at UNM and don't forget your homework!
Destiny Logan Smith
Name:Destiny Logan Smith
Language(s) spoken (if any):English, French
Concentration(s):Business with a concentration in International Management and a minor in French
Favorite place on Campus:Duck Pond or the third floor of the CTLB for studying
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:Mexico, France, Spain, Italy, Belgium, The Netherlands, England
Advice for Incoming Students:Take every opportunity to do something new that you can. Go on every trip you can, try all the new foods, just make an effort to take it all in.
Kelli Daniell Duran
Name:Kelli Daniell Duran
Concentration(s):My concentration is health medicine and human values. Hopefully applying to medical school in the future.
Favorite place on campus:My favorite place on campus is the duck pond!
Language(s) spoken (if any):I can somewhat speak Spanish? I can get by but I don't know if that counts haha
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself: I have traveled to Guatemala, Peru, England, Ireland, Italy, Switzerland and France. A fun fact about me is that I absolutely love volunteering abroad I think it's a wonderful way to help and get to see the world all at the same time!
Advice for Incoming Students: My advice for incoming students is to get involved! Anything you find interesting go to a meeting, see if there's a club because that's the way you're going to have the most fun at UNM. There are so many great people I may have never had the pleasure of meeting if I wasn't involved!
Language(s) spoken (if any):I speak English and a tiny little bit of Spanish.
Concentration(s):I am studying Neuroscience in the Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program.
Favorite place on campus:My favorite place on campus is the Health Sciences Library because of the mushroom & anatomy cases.
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:I love traveling to Alaska, Hawaii and Japan & have trips planned to Nova Scotia and Cabo San Lucas for Christmas!
Advice for Incoming Students:I think that incoming students should try to be involved in activities aside from those involving their respective studies to help maintain balance and have fun.
Favorite place on campus:My favorite place on campus is the arbor that is covered in vines, near Masley Hall.
Places you’ve traveled:I have been to many states within the United States, along with Jamaica, Grand Cayman Islands, Canada, Mexico, Croatia, Italy, Germany, Netherlands, France, Ireland, United Kingdom, and Austria.
Advice for Incoming Students:Starting college as a native student, is challenging enough. Attending UNM as a foreign student is a whole other level of challenging. The one thing that I learned while studying in Croatia and that I feel that I need to pass on, is to stay busy. I say this for multiple reasons. First off, culture shock is a real thing and it is something that not many understand unless they have experienced it themselves. Staying busy, even when you do not want to, will help you transition. I traveled and cooked dinner with my two friends that I met in Zagreb to help me stay busy. Secondly, stay busy because this time will come to an end. Whether you are here for a semester, a year, or your entire college experience. You will return home and it will feel like a dream, you will learn many things, things in which change you as a person and help you grow. I am so happy you all are here and I am beyond excited for all of the experiences you are about to have.
Languages:English pretty well; high school Spanish and college French. So, in essence, just English. Someday I would love to relearn the French to go to school in both France and Montreal.
Concentration(s):While I am getting my Masters in Art Education, I am also studying acting and film production.
Favorite UNM Place:I would have to say my favorite places on campus are the classes I am in, and also the Arts and Crafts Studio in the sub. I also love all the flowers and the trees. It really is an amazing campus to be around.
Fun Fact: I have been a part of the University since 1999 as a temporary administrative staff member. I had decided a month or so before joining UNM that I wanted to work at UNM so I could go to school again. In 2001, I took my first class and have been going steadily ever since. I have met a lot of really nice people here.
Advice:I would give the advice to always ask a question if you want to know something. It doesn’t matter what it is, just find someone and pose the question. Allow yourself to explore and have fun as well.
Language(s) spoken (if any):Arabic (Mother tongue), Tunisian (fluent), English (second language)
Favorite place on campus: The rooftop of the parking structure next to Popejoy hall.
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:I have been to many states around the US and willing to explore more.
Advice for Incoming Students:Don't hesitate to contact the GEO people for anything you need help with (Academic, activities, fun events ... etc.), these people will never fail you down.
Languages:English, Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati.
Concentration:Controls and Systems (Electrical Engineering)
Favorite place on campus: Duck Pond/Zimmerman Library
Fun Facts: I am a big time foodie and I love to try different cuisines. I love travelling and spend most of my weekends exploring diff places within and outside city. I love to read novels and go for hikes.
Advise for incoming students:Albuquerque is a beautiful and quiet city. It is a great place to stay and for studies. People here are very helpful and it really is a big city with a small town feel. I am sure you would get a lot of advise from people regarding your studies and culture in USA and other things. I would suggest to spend some time exploring the city and other places around. This is really good for stress relief, and believe me you will need some way to relieve your stress towards the second half of a semester.
Karli Adrian Montoya
Name:My name is Karli Montoya
Language(s) spoken (if any): I am currently learning how to speak Korean.
Concentration(s):My concentration is Linguistics.
Favorite place on campus:My favorite place on campus is Zimmerman library. You can always find me in there studying or just hanging out.
A fun fact about yourself:Fun Fact about me is that I have a Siberian Husky named Atticus.
Advice for Incoming Students: My advice to new students is to just have fun while you're here, but don't ignore your studies. Experience and try new things. You don't know if you don't like something if you don't try it. 화이팅!!
Languages spoken:French and Finnish
Concentration:International Studies & Sustainability
Favorite place on campus: the duck pond
Places traveled: was an exchange student in Lahti, Finland & Seoul, South Korea
Advice for incoming students:the time goes by quickly, so make the most of every situation, don't be afraid to try new things, and make time between studying to have fun and go exploring.
A Picture of Yourself:I have attached a photo of myself, it is taken in front of a Santa Fe gallery which I think is related to the context.
Language(s) spoken (if any):Farsi (Persian), English, Spanish, and a little bit of Arabic
Favorite place on campus: Fine Arts Library
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself: Since I came to US in August of 2013, I have traveled to 10 different states, but my plan is to travel to all 50 states! Among the places I visited, I liked Minnesota the most, it is not a common travel destination, but there are a lot of things to do there including kayaking, canoeing, and rafting. Minnesota is called the land of 10,000 lakes. If you walk in Minneapolis (the biggest city in Minnesota) for an hour, you can pass by two different lakes! So if you have the chance, travel there and enjoy the outdoor activities!
Advice for Incoming Students:One of the best things about studying in UNM is the opportunity to meet people not only from US, but also from all over the world. I would encourage the students to attend the GEO meetings, and to sign up for the Lobo Friends program. In this way, they can meet hundreds of other international students, make friendships with them; some of these friendships may last for a life time. There is also International Students Inc. (ISI) which helps international students meet with American families, learn about American culture, American holidays, and make a lot of American friends.
Languages spoken:Arabic, English and French.
Concentration:I am doing my PhD in Electrical Engineering - Antenna design for millimeter wave applications.
Favorite place on campus:The area north of the SUB. Great spot for coffee in the morning.
Some of the great places that I've traveled to around the US are:Grand Canyon, San Francisco, New Orleans, New York and LA. Also, some of my favorite places to go to around New Mexico are: Taos (great mountains and camping spots!), White Sands (much fun on the sand dunes!) and Jemez Springs (hiking in the river!). It's always great to have activities in nature every now and then and New Mexico is a great state for that!
My advice to new students is to focus on studying because this is why you are here, but also interact with New Mexicans, explore their culture and enjoy your time here, whenever you have a holiday or a break, by exploring different parts of the US and New Mexico!
Language(s) spoken (if any):English, Hindi.
Concentration(s):Computer Science (PhD)
Favorite place on campus:Duck Pond
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:I have been to many places in NM and outside, including Santa Fe, Taos Ski Valley, White Sands, Jemez Springs, Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Louisiana, San Diego etc.
Advice for Incoming Students:Studying in US is very different from many other parts of the world. Here, professors are much more open to problems students face and most importantly, they respect your choices over time regarding your career and academic preferences, while acknowledging your weak areas for improvement in the most respectful way. My advice to new incoming students will be to look out for opportunities here without fear of judgement. What may once have been just a passion and not a seemingly feasible career choice, may very well be studied and pursued here. People appreciate talent here, so try to break the ice of fear and showcase your true self here.
Dominic Anthony Colosimo
Name:Dominic Anthony Colosimo
Language(s) spoken (if any):My first language is English but I have studied Spanish in South America and wish to learn Italian.
Concentration(s):I am an Organizational Communications Major with an Honors Minor.
Favorite place on campus:My favorite place on campus is Johnson field because that is where I usually play sports.
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:I have lived in Amsterdam and have traveled to cities like Prague, Paris, Munich, Rome and Brussels.
Advice for Incoming Students:My advice to incoming students would be to get involved with something on campus. This will help you make friends, future connections and find your passion.
Language(s) spoken (if any):English/ Spanish
Concentration(s):International Studies/ Political Science
Favorite place on campus:Right next to the big windows in the fine arts library
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:I have studied abroad in 3 countries, but have traveled to 19 in total.
Advice for Incoming Students:Get involved early, try new things, use your professors as resources, don’t be embarrassed when learning a new language, never say no to free food, and lastly, put green chile on everything you think it might taste good on — it will.
Language(s) spoken (if any):Dutch, English
Concentration(s):Economics, Business administration with concentration in Finance and Accounting
Favorite place on campus:Hodgin Hall Alumni Center, the first building on campus
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:Traveled to Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona to visit my best friend in summer!
Advice for Incoming Students:Try to see as much of this state as possible! It truly is the Land of Enchantment!
Language(s) spoken (if any):I know bits and pieces of Spanish, but I don’t really claim it as a language I know.
Concentration(s):Information Systems & Assurance
Favorite place on campus:I would have to say it is the area in front of the Anthropology building. It is always so peaceful and I think the trees right there are just astonishing.
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:To most this doesn’t sound like anything special, but I’ve been cutting my own hair since I was 12 years old. So 14 years now and counting! I basically taught myself and over time got better at it. The trick is to hold a small pocket mirror in one hand while facing another mirror so you can see behind your head.
Advice for Incoming Students:Everyone comes from a different background, situation, experiences, etc. Sometimes this pulls us away from campus, my best advice is to spend as much time on campus as you can. The life of a college student isn’t easy, but the experience and the memories you can make are bar none some of the best experiences you will have in your life. Please don’t cheat yourself out of that opportunity.
Eduardo Nunez Cruz
Name:Eduardo Nunez Cruz
Language(s) spoken (if any):Spanish and English
Concentration(s):Doctoral in Educational Leadership
Favorite place on campus:The Duck Pond
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:I grew up in Mexico City and also lived in Guadalajara, Mex. so I traveled a lot around Central and Northern Mexico. I moved to Albuquerque 4 years ago and somehow became an outdoor guy. There are a lot of incredible places besides the big cities in the U.S. that are worth visiting. Recently, I got the opportunity to visit the Grand Canyon, the Antelope Canyon and the Horse Shoe Bend. These places are amazing and worth the drive! I have also been to Canada and some places in Europe.
Advice for Incoming Students:I would give two pieces of advice to incoming students. First, try to make connections and friends with American students! As internationals we tend to stay together with other internationals but trust me, it is worth to try and make some American friends. This really helped me to adapt easier to the culture and they also know THE best places to go! And second, always try to have an open mind to experience new things. It will make your life easier and remember you will be here for maybe a short time, so make it memorable!
Julia May Martinez
Name:Julia May Martinez
Language(s) spoken (if any):English and Spanish
Concentration(s):Major in Community Health and minoring in Psychology
Favorite place on campus:Fine Arts Library
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:Traveled to Australia, Argentina, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Israel, Ecuador, Peru, Sweden & Denmark.
Advice for Incoming Students:Take advantage of your time here because your semester will fly by! Reach out to students and start making connections, as you broaden your perceptive from different cultures around you. Likely, the friends you will make here will carry on to awesome lifelong friendships! Cheers!
Language(s) spoken (if any):English/Spanish/Mandarin/Cantonese
Concentration(s):BS Biochemistry, BA Foreign Languages (Spanish & Chinese)
Favorite place on campus:CTLB (Collaborative Teaching and Learning Building)
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:I've been to six countries! USA, Canada, Haiti, Jamaica, Mexico, China
Advice for Incoming Students:Get involved on campus! This is the most important time to shape your future and cultivate meaningful relationships that will last a lifetime.
Language(s) spoken (if any):English and Spanglish
Favorite place on campus:ASUNM's Community Experience, my office!
Places you’ve traveled to or a fun fact about yourself:My favorite places to travel include Latin American countries. I have been to Cuba, Peru, Mexico, Costa Rica, and just got back from Nicaragua!
Advice for Incoming Students:Travel and tell the truth.