Meet your 2015 University of Illinois Homecoming Court!
Oluseun “Sean” Arowolaju
Oluseun Arowolaju, Matteson, Ill., is a Nigerian born immigrant studying Sports Management and pre-law in the college of Applied Health Sciences. A former UI football player, he is involved on campus serving as the Pi Psi Chapter President of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., and the Recording Secretary for the Black Greek Council. He works for Applied Technologies for Learning in the Arts & Sciences (ATLAS) and the I FUND in Athletic Development. After graduation, he plans on obtaining his Masters, JD, and eventually a Ph.D. Oluseun is honored to serve on the 2015 Homecoming Court with Illini Pride.
Psychology and Spanish
Max Colon, Mt. Prospect, Ill., is studying Psychology and Spanish with minors in Leadership Studies and Business. A Chancellor’s Scholar and LAS James Scholar, Colon greatly values the rigor of his Illinois education, but is actively involved outside of the classroom as well. As the Director of Illini Fighting Hunger, he has worked with more than 11,000 volunteers in packaging over 1.4 million meals and 100,000 lbs. of other food aid to hunger relief agencies across Illinois. He is proud to serve on the Homecoming Court and gives thanks to all who have supported him in his time at the university.
Marc Allen Chua
Marc Allen Chua, Gurnee, Ill., is studying Economics in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and is hoping to pursue a career in management consulting. He has interned at Caterpillar, ShopperTrak, State Farm and has worked at Ikenberry Dining Services and University Housing as a Snyder Residential Advisor. Marc has held positions on board of the Philippine Student Association, Asian Pacific American Coalition, Asian American Cultural Center Advisory Board, James Scholar Student Advisory Board, Department of Economics Ambassadors, and the Asian Pacific Americans Transforming Illinois through Education conference. He believes it is an honor to participate in Homecoming Court.
Political Science and Economics
Mitch Dickey, Bourbonnais, Ill., serves as the Student Body President and is studying Political Science and Economics in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. He is passionate about making college affordable and accessible and enjoys working on education policy. In April, Dickey introduced Vice President Joe Biden to the campus for a speech on sexual assault capping off the It's On Us campaign to stop sexual assault that he and the ISS spearheaded. He has worked as a Zamboni Driver at Campus Recreation and currently works as the Wolff Intern at the Institute of Government and Public Affairs.
Molecular and Cellular Biology
Michael Fassler, Sterling, Ill., is majoring in Molecular & Cellular Biology and minoring in Chemistry. He has been highly involved within the Greek community on campus, having served on the executive board of his chapter (Alpha Gamma Rho), and the Interfraternity Council. Additionally, Michael has worked for three semesters as a Chemistry TA for the Merit Program, and helps lead MCB Peer Advising. Aside from these commitments, he also volunteers weekly as a “Big Brother” for Big Brothers-Big Sisters of Champaign. Michael is currently applying to medical school and hopes to someday practice as a pediatric specialist.
Nia Green, Matteson, Ill., is a Kinesiology major on the physical therapy track in the college of AHS. She shows a passion for social action by being involved in Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and is currently president of the Central Black Student Union. On campus, she volunteers with the RSO My Sister's Keeper tutoring young girls and puts on interactive programs to discuss issues they face. She works as a Zumba, Core Fitness, and Yoga instructor for the Lifetime Fitness Program. After being an RA for two years, she now serves as an Office Assistant at Bousfield Residency Hall.
Kendall L. Herren
Kendall Herren, Somonauk, Ill., is an Agricultural Communications major, learning the tools needed to help educate the public about their food supply. She is very active in the College of ACES through the Explore ACES Steering Committee, 4-H House Cooperative Sorority, Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow and the Student Advancement Committee. Kendall is incredibly excited to serve on the Homecoming Court, and sees this as one of the premier highlights of her senior year.
Political Science and Communication
Matt Hill, Buffalo Grove, Ill., is serving in his second term as the Student Body Vice President, leading the Illinois Student Senate’s external relations. As a senior studying Political Science and Communication, he has become passionate about using communication strategies that catalyze change. He helped lead the campus It’s On Us campaign to combat sexual assault and he now serves on its national student advisory board. He has also served as a Philanthropy Chair for Phi Sigma Kappa, Social Media Intern for Admissions and Peer Tutor for the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics. Hill is excited to represent the university during Homecoming.
Deneen Amanda Holmes
Deneen Amanda Holmes, Calumet City, Ill., is a Community Health major with a concentration in Health Promotion and Health Education within the College of Applied Health Sciences. On campus, she is an Illinois Student Admissions Representative as well as Intern for 100 STRONG through the African American Cultural Center and President for the student organization called Women of Color. Off campus, she is a Licensed Practical Nurse for the Champaign County Nursing Home specializing in Geriatrics. Through her involvement and dedication to serving others, on and off campus, she utilizes a considerate and kindhearted spirit with every aspect of life!
Alex Nathan Kahn
Alex Nathan Kahn, Glen Ellyn, Ill., studies Mechanical Engineering and conducts research sponsored by Semiconductor Research Corporation. He is Vice President of New Members for Pi Tau Sigma Mechanical Engineering Honors Society, a Distinguished Active Member of Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honors Society, a Chancellor’s Scholar, a James Scholar, and a member of the Provost’s Undergraduate Student Advisory Board. He enjoys Sailing Club and the Illinois Men’s Volleyball club team, through which he has been nationally recognized. Outreach has motivated his aspiration for a master’s degree concerning medical technology, and this December he will volunteer on a Guatemalan organic farm.
Illyanna Lopez, Elgin Ill., is studying elementary education in the College of Education. On campus, she co-founded the University of Illinois chapter of Students Today Leaders Forever (STLF), a nationally recognized non-profit volunteer and leadership organization. Her other passions include being co-president of the Velocity Dance Team and a Resident Advisor of Snyder Hall. Outside of campus, Lopez is an active world traveler and believes in the power of cross-cultural education and learning about others' experiences different than her own. Although her future plans include living outside of the United States and teaching abroad, she will forever be a proud Illini.
Razyeeh Mazaheri, Vernon Hills, Ill., is majoring in Animal Sciences in the College of ACES, with a minor in Integrative Biology. She is currently a research assistant in the Dairy Nutrition department. She also serves as the president of Pre-Vet Club, treasurer of Teachers for Creatures, secretary of Companion Animals Club, and board member for Iranian Cultural Association. She will be applying to veterinary school this upcoming summer in hopes of continuing her path towards becoming a veterinarian. As a member of Homecoming Court, she hopes to advocate for the plethora of resources the University of Illinois provides for students.
Jaylin D. McClinton
African-American Studies and Political Science, Pre-Law
Jaylin D. McClinton, Chicago, Ill., is studying African-American Studies and Political Science with a Pre-Law Concentration. He is Student Trustee and President of the Illini Union Board. Previously, he served as a board member and Chairman of the Student Organization Resource Fee Board as a Multicultural Advocate, and as President of the Minority Association for Future Attorneys. His Illinois experience has been transformative and he is grateful to have been selected for the 2015 Homecoming Court. After college, he will continue his commitment to social justice by pursuing a career as an attorney advocating for the most underserved and underrepresented groups.
Ashley S. Moy, Barrington, Ill., is pursuing a BS in bioengineering with a Chemistry minor and innovation certificate. She conducted research in synthetic biology, tissue engineering, and surgical robotics at Illinois and abroad. She has led teams that won international research and design competitions and has presented her work at multiple conferences around the world. She promotes Illini pride serving as director of multiple engineering outreach organizations. Her adventurous nature has her involved in many activities, ranging from Marching Illini to aerial dance. After graduation, she hopes to work on innovation for healthcare startups as a third-generation Illinois engineer.
Bridget O’Brien, Chicago, Ill., is studying Civil Engineering in the College of Engineering and is minoring in the Hoeft Technology & Management Program. She has demonstrated her leadership as Vice President of Homecoming for the Student Alumni Ambassadors, Vice President of Administration for Alpha Omicron Pi sorority, and Outreach Coordinator for Camp Kesem. O’Brien has actively engaged in outreach efforts through the Society of Women Engineers and has mentored both first-year engineering students and children in Champaign-Urbana schools. She is honored to be a member of the 2015 Homecoming Court and is grateful for the opportunity to represent the university.
Industrial Engineering and Economics
Krishna Somayajula, Portland, Ore., is studying Industrial Engineering and Economics, minoring in Global Studies. Krishna has served as a leader in service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega, professional business fraternity Alpha Kappa Psi, and social fraternity Beta Theta Pi. He is tremendously grateful for the mentorship and support he has received from the Illinois family and has strived to pass it on by being a teaching assistant for the Department of Business Administration as well as an Engineering Learning Assistant. Krishna is proud to be an Illini and is honored to represent the student body by serving on the Homecoming court.
Yitian "Tina" Tang
Economics and Statistics
Yitian (Tina) Tang, Wuhan, China, is studying economics and statistics in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. On campus, she has been actively involved in various volunteering organizations including Volunteer Illini Projects and YMCA Alternative Spring Break, and has worked for the Office of New Student Programs and the Office of Volunteer Programs. Interested in solving problems utilizing data analytical skills, she interned at the Brookings Institution doing web analysis and completed an independent research on cybersecurity. She is very proud to be one of the few international students in the university’s history to be on the Homecoming Court.
Nicholas L. Tarleton
Food Science and Human Nutrition
Nicholas L. Tarleton, Westchester, Ill., promotes leadership, empowerment and pride for Illinois. Tarleton studies Food Science and Human Nutrition in the College of ACES and serves as the Vice President of Alumni Relations of Student Alumni Ambassadors where he has directed the Senior 100 Honorary and Illini Comeback programs. He continuously inspires and ensures his peer’s voices are heard by serving as the Vice President of College Relations of the College of ACES’ Student Advancement Committee and a third-year resident advisor at University Housing. He is proud to represent the University of Illinois and will forever bleed orange and blue.
Materials Science and Engineering
Hannah Taylor, Pawnee, Ill., was raised to bleed orange and blue. It was always her dream to attend the University of Illinois and cheer on the Fighting Illini. She is a member of the Orange Krush student cheering organization where she has led the section as president of its Foundation Board and serves as a student representative to the UI Athletic Board. She studies Materials Science and Engineering and is actively involved in the Society of Women Engineers. She is truly honored to serve on this year’s Homecoming court and hopes to inspire future Illini to pursue their dreams just like she has.
Jazmyn "Jazzy" Thomas
Human Development and Family Studies
Jazmyn “Jazzy” Thomas, Peoria, Ill., finds significance in the art of mentoring students. She is studying Human Development and Family Studies and minoring in Sociology to discover the connection between human growth and societal structures, specifically schools. She is involved with Mortar Board Senior Honor Society, the University of Illinois Black Chorus, and has volunteered at a local elementary school and Carle Hospital. Jazzy currently interns with C-U 1:1 mentoring at Urbana High School. She is elated to represent this great university and use all that she has learned in the future as a student affairs professional.
If you have questions, please contact Melissa Kisubika or Denise R. Poindexter at email@example.com.