Undergraduate Mentors

2018–19 Undergraduate Mentors

The Undergraduate Mentors work with students to guide individual research paths that advance their own academic interests. Set up an appointment with a UM today!

Sarah Atta
Undergraduate Mentor

Contact me if you're interested in studying on the pre-medical track, participating in biomedical research, discussing topics in U.S. History, learning a less-commonly taught language like Arabic, exploring Pittsburgh, or geeking over Harry Potter!

Iyanna Boatwright-Buffaloe
Undergraduate Mentor

Hi! If you're interested in researching something that is totally unrelated to your major, contact me! I'm a computer science major that also very passionate about studying jazz music on my own. I would be glad to chat about finding some balance between your areas of study, general research questions, where to get the finest tacos on campus, or the latest The Internet album.

Brittany Chamberlain
Undergraduate Mentor

Hello! Research has been one of the best parts of my Pitt experience, and if you are interested in getting involved in studying what you are passionate about as an undergraduate researcher, contact me! Whether you hope to pursue basic science research or research in the humanities and social sciences, I look forward to helping you meet your academic goals! Outside of the lab, I enjoy rock climbing, volunteering in the Pittsburgh community, and advocating for cats as a superior species - I'd be happy to chat with you on any of these topics as well.

Thomas Freitag
Undergraduate Mentor

Contact me if you’re interested in studying on the pre-medical track, participating in research focusing on neuroscience, psychology, public health, medical history, or LGBTQ+ issues. Regardless of if your research interest is pure science, interdisciplinary, or intersectional, I’m happy to help you in any way I can! In addition, I’m happy to discuss how to develop important relationships with professors, applying to national awards, and youth volunteering in Pittsburgh or internationally. If you’d just like to chat, I’m always game to discuss running, football, baseball, Pennsylvania history, and trends in men’s fashion!

Reagan Harper
Undergraduate Mentor

Contact me if you are interested in architectural history, museum archives, or the Nationality Rooms.

SiLang Huang
Undergraduate Mentor

If you want to start your research journey in the field of social science, humanities, or art in your undergraduate years, or need some suggestion about academic resources to guide your research, don't hesitate to contact me! As an international student, I enjoy talking to people from all kinds of cultural background and would like to help build a diverse student academic community in research! I am currently conducting ethnographic research on first-generation Chinese migrants and second-generation migrants in China and is making a documentary about it. If you are interested in learning foreign culture, please don't hesitate to contact me! I would love to share my experience at Pitt to you!

Erica Hughes
Undergraduate Mentor

Contact me if you are interested in matters of interdisciplinary research, social justice, psychology, and art. I am currently working in a lab on Borderline Personality Disorder in Youth but also have experience researching transnational graffiti, and the role of national identity in visual arts. Feel free to set up an appointment if you want to discuss your ideas, the world, art, coffee or cool spots in Pittsburgh!

Michael Kane
Undergraduate Mentor

Contact me if you're interested in talking about chemistry, psychology, or education research, or First Experiences in Research. I can also teach you how to play quidditch!

Sarah Koros
Undergraduate Mentor

Contact me if you're interested in sociology, philosophy, religion, Jewish studies, or cats and dogs! I have research experience in critical theory, continental philosophy of religion, Jewish philosophy and Jewish art history. 

Rachana Nayak
Undergraduate Mentor

Contact me if you are interested in discussing geography, culture, majoring in neuroscience, or research in neuroscience.

Prachi Patel
Undergraduate Mentor

Hi! I have a background in pre-medicine and journalism, but my research focuses on using photography to empower refugee and immigrant youth to share their perceptions of Pittsburgh. Feel free to reach out, especially if you’re interested in social sciences research, starting an independent research project, doing community-based research, or learning about immigration and refugee communities in the city! I’d love to talk.

Salina Pressimone
Undergraduate Mentor

Contact me if you are interested in topics of migration, refugee patterns and news, or international relations. I have research experience in identity in literature, the role of news media and journalism in the context of past and present immigration policies, and post-conflict reconstruction and transitional justice. Set up an appointment if you want to talk about your ideas or just need a partner to practice your Spanish with!

Alexandra Rich
Undergraduate Mentor

I am currently conducting research in Dr. Shaw's Pitt Parents and Children Laboratory. I am conducting my own project on addressing single motherhood and its impact on children. I have worked in a Bio Sea Phage Lab, conducted political science research in First Experiences in Research, and I have worked in the Austism Spectrim Disorder Lab. Contact me if you're interested in psychology, criminology, government, law, service-based community research, general service, or otters!

Abay Tadesse
Undergraduate Mentor

A current senior who enjoys long walks down Forbes Ave to class every morning and back home at night. Currently, I am doing research in a biochemistry lab studying small stable unknown RNA molecules in lytic phages. I have also had some experience working in a Immunology Lab looking at cancer immunotherapy. Outside of class I enjoy running, lifting, and exploring different parts of Pittsburgh, and occasionally catching a bus to campus. I would love to meet with you and combine your passion for research and creativity, to find an area of exploration that meets your needs. Feel free to reach out to me by making an appointment or sending an email!

Tara Taheri
Undergraduate Mentor

During my time at Pitt so far, research has shaped my academic experience in many ways, and has lead me to even greater opportunities. I would like to help you pursue your research passions and make sure you are aware of all the remarkable opportunities available at Pitt! Contact me if you are interested in research in the natural sciences; like Neuroscience, or even the social sciences; like Sociology! I would also love to discuss public health topics, puppies, or food!

John Talley
Undergraduate Mentor

Contact me if you're interested in public health, researching for and at the community level, finding a way to relate your science interests in a social approach, or debating which dog breeds are superior.

Chloe Zhang
Undergraduate Mentor

Hello! I am currently helping with a computational humanities research. I have also had some research experience in Asian American Literature through the First Experiences in Research(FE-R) program, and interned as a software engineer intern in the Radiology Research& Development Department at Bayer Pharmaceuticals. I love reading, coding, logic puzzles and indie movies.Contact me if you are interested in computer science, philosophy, literature, First Experiences in Research, or if you aren’t sure what exactly you’re interested in but would like to find a way to further your educational experience!