Meet Our Team

Amelie Justo-Sainz '25
Amelie

Hometown: San Francisco, California
High School:
Mercy High School Burlingame
Major:
Sociology & Latinx, Latin American Studies
Activities on campus:
Tour guide, La Causa
Hobbies:
Listening to music, reading & binge watching Grey's Anatomy on Netflix
Languages Spoken:
English and Spanish
Pronouns:
She/Her/Hers

Hello! My name is Amelie, and I am from San Francisco, California. Coming from a big city, I was a little wary of moving to a small town, but Amherst quickly became my home away from home. It did not take long for me to find my people, especially with how welcoming everyone is here. In my free time, you will most likely find me at Val, making an iced coffee, or in one of Frost’s study rooms, studying (but mostly hanging out) with friends. 

The college process can be very isolating for students who identify as first generation, low income, and BIPOC. I remember how crucial the diversity outreach programs and people from the admission office were to my experience of getting to know Amherst. It was comforting to attend Diversity Outreach events because it allowed me to discover that there were others like me on campus and a strong community I can rely on. I want to be that comfort and support system for you all! 

Feel free to reach out with any questions! 

diversity@amherst.edu


Patience Kum '25

Patience

Hometown: Takoradi, Ghana
High School:
The Taft School
Major:
Economics, Political Science
Activities on campus:
Women's soccer, Investment Club, CACSAC, Five, Sports Statistician, Conversation partner for  Five College Supervised Independent Language Program
Hobbies:
Swimming, watching college soccer & basketball
Languages Spoken:
Twi, Fanti, English, a little bit of French
Pronouns:
She/Her/Hers

Patience is an international student from Takoradi, Ghana. She is a sophomore majoring in Economics and Political Science. She loves learning different languages from being exposed to more than fifty languages growing up in Ghana. In addition to being a diversity outreach intern, she works as a Twi conversation partner for the Five College Supervised Independent Language Program. She’s on the women’s soccer team, a member of the Council of Amherst College Student-Athletes of Color, and the Investment Club. During her free time, she helps coach middle schoolers at a middle school close to campus and watches Premier League soccer. She was nervous about feeling out of place and not belonging at Amherst but the close-knit international community quickly made her feel at ease. Ask her anything about being away from home!​ 


Adam Johnson-Hill '25

Adam Johnson-Hill

Hometown: New York City, New York
High School:
The Dalton School
Major: Undecided
Activities on campus:
Black Student Union, Amherst Club Rugby, WAMH, Diversity Outreach Intern
Hobbies:
Watching the Boondocks
Languages Spoken:
English
Pronouns:
He/Him/His

Adam (He/him) is a second-year prospective Economics and Black Studies major from Harlem, New York. When he is not studying in the science center or Beneski, he can be found on the rugby pitch at the bottom of the memorial hill. When he is not working in the admissions office, Adam is involved in the Black Student Union, the Club Rugby, and the African Caribbean Student Union. He currently lives in the Charles Drew African American Culture House, so he would love to answer any questions regarding the theme housing process. He is also an alum of Access to Amherst (A2A), which is one of the main reasons he attended Amherst College.


Manuel Medina '22

Manny

Hometown: ​Bronx, NY  
High School
: The Browning School
Major
: Prospective Neuroscience
Activities on campus
: La Causa, Choral Society, Intramural Soccer
Hobbies
: Running, blasting music, playing piano, eating, watching Criminal Minds and Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and not color-matching with the rest of the team.
Pronouns
: ​H​e/​H​im/​H​i​s​

Hey!! My name is Manny, and I’m a junior from The Bronx pursuing a major in Neuroscience! I attended a small all-guys private school for high school, made possible through my involvement with the TEAK Fellowship, a Community Based Organization (CBO) in NYC that helps talented students from low income families get into selective high schools and colleges, an incredible resource that offered consistent support as I adjusted to a private school environment. On campus, I’m involved in La Causa, an affinity group for LatinX students, and choral society.

I learned about Amherst primarily through TEAK, as they organized college visits, and spoke with older generations of students that applied and attended. I ended up attending the Access to Amherst (A2A) in September of my Senior year, and it became an important deciding factor as I applied to Amherst Early Decision.

Everything feels as if it has come full circle as I saw the incredible work the Diversity Outreach Interns did when I visited three years ago, and I felt the desire to attend Amherst and really have a lasting impact on prospective students. Please feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions about how my experience at Amherst has played out, the application process, or whatever else comes to mind!


Noni Akintunde '22

Noni

Hometown: Cleveland, OH
High School
: Cleveland School of Architecture and Design
Major
: English, Film and Media Studies, and Theatre and Dance​
Activities on campus
: Queer Resource Center (QRC)​
Hobbies
: Listening to music​
Pronouns
: They/Them/Theirs  

Hi! My name is Noni and I’m a junior from Cleveland, Ohio. I don’t know what my major is yet, but I’m considering English, Film and Media Studies, and Theatre and Dance. On campus, I work in the Queer Resource Center as well. When I’m not working, I’m probably listening to music.

I knew nothing about Amherst until my high school college counselor told me about Access to Amherst (A2A). From the first time I step foot on campus, I knew Amherst was the place for me, and the Diversity Outreach Interns during A2A really helped me see myself in a space like Amherst. I knew once I got to Amherst, I had to apply to be a Diversity Outreach Intern, and it means so much to me that I can support prospective students during their college application process.

Feel free to reach out if you have any questions about being black and queer on campus, being a first generation, low income student, the application process in general, or anything else on your mind!


Jeanyna Garcia '23

Headshot of Jeanyna with just green trees in the background.

Hometown: Washington Heights, New York City! 
High School
: Columbia Secondary School
Major
: Environmental Studies
Activities on campus
: Eco-Rep, La Causa, QuestBridge, Green Room 
Hobbies: Jamming to K-pop, singing, reading Webtoons, bird watching, exploring town, eating and cooking good food
Pronouns: She/Her/Hers  

 

Hi everyone! I’m Jeanyna Garcia, a sophomore at Amherst College who’s super excited to join the Diversity Outreach team. Ever since stepping foot on campus during Access to Amherst (A2A) as a senior, I was drawn by the super cool windbreakers that the Diversity Outreach Interns wore and knew from that very first sight that I had to become an intern if I got into Amherst, and here I am! But, in all honesty, beyond earning cool swag, I really want to create and spur that same magic and wonder the Diversity Outreach Interns and the rest of the Amherst community created for me during A2A, and empower students of color, first generation, undocumented, or low income students to see themselves reach their potential and succeed in college and beyond. 

If you see me during Admitted Students Day or during A2A, feel free to say hi or ask me anything, whether it be Amherst or non-Amherst related! 


Lauren Ju '23

Lauren Hometown: Fullerton, CA
High School
: Fairmont Preparatory Academy
Major
: Prospective Biochemistry with a certificate in Culture, Health, and Science
Activities on campus
: Amherst Women in STEM (AWIS), Reader to Reader, Circus Magazine
Hobbies: Art, playing video games (Fire Emblem, Breath of the Wild, Octopath), twitter, eating
Pronouns: She/Her/Hers  

Hello! I’m Lauren, and I’m a sophomore from LA/Orange County (go Ktown!!). I’m thinking of majoring in Biochemistry with a certificate in Culture, Health, and Science.

I didn’t know much about Amherst during the application process. Nobody from my high school had attended before, so it was only at the urging of my counselor and upperclassmen friends that I decided to apply. When the time came to commit, I was originally set on attending a university that was much closer to home and more comfortable. But upon being flown in for the Admitted Student Weekend, I found myself struck by the small class sizes, open curriculum, and genuine passion that the students I met had for the college.

Since then, I’ve found a really great community of friends and mentors that have supported me in acclimating to the struggles of New England weather, juggling my academic and home lives (which can be hard considering the distance), and the unfortunate deficit of BCD gobchang soondubu. 

The Diversity Outreach Intern Team has had a really positive impact on me and my decision to come here, and I’m so excited to be part of a group that works to create an inclusive, equitable Amherst community. Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions you may have!


Quentin Jeyaretnam '23

Quentin

Hometown: Singapore
High School
: Deerfield Academy
Major
: Economicsand Mathematics
Activities on campus
: Jazz @ Amherst, Consulting Club, Asian Students Association, Buddhist Group, Rock Climbing, Southeast Asian Students Association
Hobbies: Cooking, jam sessions, yoga & meditation, chess, hours of YouTube videos Languages Spoken: English, Mandarin
Pronouns: He/Him/His

Hey everyone! My name is Quentin, and I'm a junior from Singapore studying economics and math. Depending on the time of day, you’d either find me at the gym, a music practice room, or in Frost Library getting through my problem sets. I’m also a huge foodie and love to cook – hit me up for some handmade pasta!

Having spent two years in the Singapore Army between high school and college, I knew that transitioning back into the rigor of college life would be difficult. I decided to attend Amherst College because of its close community focused on inclusivity and diversity, where I knew I would be supported by my peers and professors and have access to resources and opportunities that would be much less attainable at a larger school, and this has made returning to school that much smoother and more enjoyable.

Feel free to reach out if you’d like to know more about adjusting to life in college, my experience as an international student studying halfway across the world from home, the many wonderful resources available on campus, or anything at all!


Sirus Wheaton '23

Headshot of Sirus with just trees in the background.

Hometown: ​Los Angeles, California 
High School
: Harvard Westlake
Major
: Prospective Economics and LJST
Activities on campus
: Black Students Union (BSU), WAMH Amherst College Radio, Men’s Club Soccer
Hobbies: Complaining about weather under 70 degrees, watching scary movies, playing soccer, Oreos, Wii Sports, hanging out with my friends, Tik Tok
Pronouns: He/Him/His

 

What’s up everyone! My name is Sirus and I am a sophomore from Los Angeles, California. I really am from View Park, but no one ever knows where that is so I just say LA. I am not sure what I what to major in but I am interested in Economics and LJST. I play a ton of soccer so you can probably catch me on one of the fields when it’s warm enough or playing in the gym.

My high school was a very isolating place for people like me who are both black and low income. Coming to the Diversity Open House, I knew Amherst wasn’t a place like this. Stepping onto campus I could feel the warmth and the love that is so apparent for all here. Now being an Amherst student that experience has only intensified. I have found so many groups of people who have dealt with so many similar things to myself in groups such as the Black Student Union. Amherst has a multitude of resources for anyone on campus, and I am so grateful for that.

Feel free to ask me any questions about anything or to send me a really funny Tik Tok!


Zaki Ellis M'hammedi Alaoui '24

Headshot of Zaki with just green trees in the background. Hometown: ​Milton, MA
High School
: Milton Academy
Major
: Neuroscience and Philosophy
Activities on campus
: Muslim Student Association E-Board, Neuroscience Research, Amherst College Rugby, Black Student Union
Hobbies:Reading manga and watching anime, playing baseball, reading philosophy, and spending quality time with friends and family
Languages Spoken:
English, French
Pronouns:
He/Him/His

Hi All! I’m Zaki Alaoui and I’m a sophomore from Milton, Massachusetts (20 minutes away from Boston). I am super excited to be a part of the Diversity Outreach Team! I am a neuroscience and philosophy major, but I am specifically interested in research within the fields of biology and neuroscience, cognitive neuroscience, and the question of consciousness.

One fact about me is that I have gone to the same school my entire life leading up to Amherst. I started at Milton Academy at 4 months old in the infant room and have stayed there up until high school graduation. I loved my school experience, but I know that there is still work to be done to get underrepresented students into higher education and predominantly white institutions. I was a participant of DIVOH (now A2A) during my senior year and taking part in the program really helped me find my way to Amherst. I was able to see how much Amherst cared for their students and community members before I was even accepted into the school. This really helped me realize that Amherst was the place for me.

Feel free to reach out if you have any questions about the Amherst experience, what it was like to navigate starting college during a pandemic, or the several resources and support systems on campus!


Tiia Maleah McKinney '25



Tiia McKinney Hometown:
Eleuthera, The Bahamas
High School:
The Pennington School
Major:
Law Jurisprudence and Social Thought (LJST), Spanish
Activities on campus:
Diversity Intern, Tour Guide, Black Student Union, African Caribbean Students Associations, School Newspaper: The Student, The Indicator (Literary Magazine)
Hobbies: Listening to music, painting or doodling, watching Netflix, listening to mystery and horror podcasts Languages Spoken: English
Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Tiia McKinney ‘25 (she/her) is a sophomore from Eleuthera, The Bahamas. She is a prospective Law Jurisprudence and Social Thought (LJST) and Spanish double major. She loves connecting with others through languages, and she hopes to travel around the world. Tiia would like to make a difference in her communities through law one day. Ever since coming to Amherst, Tiia has gotten to explore more of the world, and experience brutal winters that are a little different to the winters that she is used to. Tiia loves hanging out in the Center for International Engagement (CISE) and she is a Caribbean Chair on the African Caribbean Students Union board this year. Tiia is tour guide this year in addition to being a diversity intern. Outside of these activities, she loves spending time with friends, watching movies, painting, and listening to music on walks. She is so excited to meet everyone coming to Amherst this year from anywhere in the world or even in the state. She is more than willing to answer any questions from students who are curious about Amherst just like she was. 


Mica Nimkarn '24

Headshot of Mica with just green trees in the background. Hometown: ​Queens, New York
High School
: The Bronx High School of Science
Major
: Sexuality, Women's & Gender Studies
Activities on campus:
Asian Students Association, Southeast Asian Students Association, The Stream Magazine, Dance and Step at Amherst College, Asian and Pacific American Action Committee, Research in the Anthropology and SWAGS departments Hobbies: Tap dance, embroidery, thrifting, cooking
Languages Spoken: 
English and Thai
Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Hi everyone! I am Mica Nimkarn, a sophomore from Queens, New York. I am an Anthropology and Sexuality, Women's and Gender Studies (SWAGS) major and I am currently doing research in the Anthropology department studying Thai international students and assisting in the SWAGS department. I am Thai-American, First-generation Low Income (FLI) and queer. On campus I am involved in Asian affinity groups and advocating for an Asian American Studies department on campus. I am also a dancer and a part of Dance and Step at Amherst College. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions about being any of the identities I listed above at Amherst, or any of the clubs I am a part of!


Mikayah Monique Parsons '24

Headshot of Mikayah with just green trees in the background. Hometown: ​Taylorsville, North Carolina
High School
: Alexander Early College
Major
: English and American Studies
Activities on campus
: The Indicator, Event Chair of the QuestBridge Low-Income Community, Dining Services, Wellness Team
Hobbies: Creative writing, scrapbooking, going to the gym, running
Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

 

Hi, everyone! I'm Mikayah (she/her/hers). I'm from Taylorsville, North Carolina, but I consider Amherst my home :) Since coming to Amherst, I have taken a leadership role on the e-board of the QuestBridge Low-Income Community. I matched to Amherst through QuestBridge, and I couldn't be happier about how my match turned out. I identify as a first-generation, low-income, queer student of color (Black and Latina). My experience at Amherst has certainly been impacted by my identities, but it has been primarily positive. If you have any questions about how my various identities show up on the Amherst College campus, feel free to reach out to me! It can be hard to navigate the culture at Amherst at first, and I still struggle understanding resources even now. However, the thing I love most about Amherst is the community – and I already consider you a part of mine. In addition to QuestBridge, I participate in the Wellness Team, the Indicator (lit mag on campus), and dining services (a job I highly recommend). If you have any questions about these roles or anything else, I highly encourage you to reach out :)

Questions for the interns? Email diversity@amherst.edu. Please keep in mind this email is not monitored during summer or winter vacations.