Picture of Claire Bandet


Claire Bandet
Home town: Palo Alto, CA
College of Arts & Sciences

Claire: I am a sophomore majoring in Biology, and Environment, Sustainability, and Policy in the College of Arts and Sciences. On campus I do research in the greenhouse, and I play for the women’s club volleyball team. After I graduate, I plan to get my PhD and become a research scientist. My favorite part of being in Honors is all the unique, fun classes I get to take, and the wonderful people I get to take them with. A fun fact about me: I have been sky diving!


Picture of Kyra Birenbaum
Kyra Birenbaum
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Falk College/Maxwell School

Kyra is a double major in Human Development and Family Science in Falk College, and Citizenship and Civic Engagement in Maxwell School. On-campus, she is an Honors Ambassador, Falk Ambassador, and is on the Executive Board for The Women’s Network Club. Her goal is to participate in research on both the education system and in the Human Development field. What she loves most about being in Honors is the abundance of resources available for Honors students and the supportive community between the faculty and other students. A fun fact about Kyra is that she is a die-hard New York Knicks fan.


Picture of Gretchen Coleman
Gretchen Coleman
Hometown: Palatine, IL
College of Arts & Sciences/Maxwell School

Gretchen: I’m a junior political science and political philosophy major from the Chicago suburbs. On campus, I’m a Student Research Mentor for the SOURCE (the office for undergraduate research and creative engagement), and I’m the treasurer for the College Democrats. I’m also the founder of Ballot Z, an initiative to increase turnout among Generation Z voters in Illinois; I’m really passionate about voting rights and hope to pursue a career in election reform advocacy. Honors has been one of the most rewarding parts of my SU experience because of the fascinating courses and supportive community, so I love being an Honors Ambassador! A fun fact about me is that I’m a trained historical interpreter – back home I give tours of an 1880s-era farm in period costume.


Picture of Emily Diamond
Emily Diamond
Hometown: Boston, MA
College of Arts & Sciences/Maxwell School

Emily: I am a sophomore majoring in Political Science with a focus in Law and Courts on the Pre-law Track. My educational goals are to go to law school in the Boston area after I graduate from SU, and to eventually practice either Family Law or Civil Rights Law. On campus, I am actively involved in Hillel, Alpha Epsilon Phi sorority, and Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity. What I love most about being in Honors at SU is that I have the opportunity to push myself academically and get to take more challenging classes that expand my knowledge of the world and the places around me. A fun fact about me is that I worked as a camp counselor and lifeguard for the past three summers! For fun, I like to exercise and hang out with friends!


Picture of Bridget Essing
Bridget Essing
Hometown: Trumbull, CT
College of Arts & Sciences

My name is Bridget and I am a sophomore majoring in Forensic Science, Biology with a minor in Arabic. On campus I am a member of the Beta Beta Beta National Biological Honors Society, I volunteer with the Conversation Partner Language program and I am on the Honors Advisory Board. I am also an avid participant in club sports, as I play on the Women’s Club Lacrosse Team and I am the Director of Operations for the Men’s Ice Hockey Team on campus. The best part about the Honors program is the Honors seminars. These classes give students more face time with the accomplished professors that teach university courses and allow students in the class and professors to get to know each other on a more personal level. These courses are also very interesting and branch outside of normal university subject material. A fun fact about me is that I went skydiving for the first time this past summer!


Picture of Mary Fitzgerald
Mary Fitzgerald
Hometown: East Brunswick, NJ
School of Education

Mary: I’m a freshman inclusive elementary and special education major with a planned minor in Italian. On campus, other than being an honors ambassador, I am a tour guide in University 100. I also am a peer partner for InclusiveU, a program dedicated to giving students with intellectual and developmental disabilities a chance to get on campus and take classes towards a degree or certification. I am a part of campus cursive, an organization whose goal is to spread positivity and love to those who need it around campus. I’ve volunteered through Hendrick’s Chapel as well as having participated on an intramural soccer team. My goals for the future include hopefully teaching in an inclusive classroom in NYC, maybe one day becoming a principal and implementing inclusion or going into education policy and reform. What I love most about honors is both the interesting and fun classes we get to take, as well as the opportunity to get to know people outside of my major across all of the schools and colleges. All honors students are dedicated and each person brings a unique perspective to classes which I always look forward to hearing in classes. In my free time I love to do puzzles, read and hang out with my friends. A fun fact about me is that I’ve never broken a bone!


Picture of Evan Greenberg
Evan Greenberg
Hometown: Mamaroneck, NY
College of Arts & Sciences/Maxwell School

Evan: I’m a freshman double major in Political Science and Citizenship & Civic Engagement in the Maxwell School. I am planning on attending Law School after graduating. On-campus, I’m a member of the Honors Advisory Board, College Democrats, Students Demand Action, and Z89. The best part about being in the Honors program are the classes that are available for honors students. It is great to be able to take a lecture class in a smaller setting or have the professor of the course lead the recitation. There are also specific honors courses that are available that cover interesting topics which are great to take. A fun fact about me is that I started an annual charity event called Evan and Joshua’s Hot Cocoa Stand that benefits the Pediatric Cancer Foundation. In the 14 years of the Hot Cocoa Stand, we have raised close to $60,000 in total for PCF.


Picture of Mohamed Khan
Mohamed Khan
Hometown: Babylon, NY
College of Arts & Sciences/Maxwell School

Mohamed: I am a junior majoring in history and public affairs with a minor in public health. I am on the pre-med track and involved in Camp Kesem and SU Literacy Corps. I am also a NYS Certified EMT in Suffolk County and a hospital scribe in New York City. Currently, I am doing research in the Fondy Lab studying the sonication of Leukemia cells in humans and in mice. Academically speaking, I am planning to pursue an MPH/MHA and then go on to medical school. Careerwise, I hope to be a pediatrician or medical examiner one day. Although I like everything about honors, what I love most about is Butters. Like the adage goes, “It’s not honors without Butters”. The advising is extremely helpful and I wouldn’t be as involved on campus without honors. They led me to everything I am now. For fun, I like basketball and I love watching March Madness. Other times, I like hanging out with my friends over the weekend and just chilling or even watching Hulu and listening to Spotify.


Picture of Justin Mitchell
Justin Mitchell
Hometown: Ridgefield, CT
College of Arts & Sciences/Maxwell School

Justin: I am a junior majoring in International Relations and Russian Language, Literature, and Culture, as well as History and Political Science! I was born in Seattle (which I love dearly) but I live in Connecticut. I’m a senior e-board member of The John Quincy Adams Society, the International Relations Club, and the Model United Nations Club. While I don’t have a clear plan in mind just yet, I want to go to graduate school and enter politics and academia. I love being in Honors because I enjoy being around other students who love learning – being around them makes me want to be a better learner. I enjoy hanging out with friends, exercising, and learning about politics, history, and the environment. A fun fact about me: I’ve been doing Kung Fu since I was 6 years old and I’m currently a 2nd-degree black belt!


Picture of Cheyene Muenzel
Cheyene Muenzel
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
College of Arts & Sciences

Cheyene: Hi! I’m a sophomore majoring in Forensic Science and Chemistry on the Pre-Health track. I am involved in computational forensic pathology research in the FNSSI. I am also an SU Literacy Corps Tutor, an Honors Peer Mentor, and a respite care volunteer with the VA Hospital. When I’m not busy, I love to watch movies, go ice-skating, and go to concerts! After college, I hope to attend medical school and become a forensic medical examiner. The Honors program created an environment that challenges me to put forth my best work. The support offered by the Honors advising has been instrumental in helping me attain my educational and research goals.


Picture of Caitlyn Pritchard
Caitlyn Pritchard
Hometown: San Diego, CA
College of Arts & Sciences/Maxwell School

Caitlyn: Hi, I am a triple major in Biology, Forensic Science and Policy Studies, and on the pre-health track. My goal is to earn my MD and go into forensic pathology, ideally with the FBI. I am a member of the Dean’s Team in the College of Arts and Sciences and a member of Syracuse Snare Quidditch Club. I am also a Teaching Assistant for PST 101, where my role is the Head Regrade Director. There are so many perks to being in Honors, my favorite being the variety of courses that are offered. Another perk of being in Honors is early selection of courses and the ability to take over 19 credits each semester. Early selection makes it easier for me to have the courses I need and, as a triple major, I might need to take over 19 credits at a time to ensure I graduate on time. I enjoy baking and cooking for fun and love to bake for my friends’ birthdays. A fun fact about me is, the summer after junior year, I rode a horse named Thor up the side of Red Mountain at Mammoth Lakes in California.


Picture of Kianna Shakir
Kianna Shakir
Hometown: Santa Clarita, CA
College of Arts & Sciences

Kianna: I’m a sophomore double majoring in history and English (creative writing), with a minor in marketing. I’m a WellsLink Scholar and have been involved with the Office of Multicultural Affairs since my freshman year. I’m also a sister of Kappa Phi Lambda Sorority, Inc. I hope to find a career where I can combine my love for history and creative writing. My goal is to publish middle-grade novels centered on U.S. history, culture, and folklore that features underrepresented characters. I am thankful to be in the Honors Program and have the option of taking interesting and impactful classes. The staff and community have always been welcoming and truly want the best for their students. In my free time, I enjoy trying different food places in Syracuse with my friends, watching sports, and reading.


Picture of Emily Steinberger


Emily Steinberger
Hometown: Burlingame, CA
Newhouse

Emily: Hi! I am a freshman studying photography with a concentration in photojournalism. I am a design editor and photographer for The Daily Orange, SU’s newspaper, and a member of the National Press Photographers Association (NPPA). Additionally, I play clarinet in SU’s pep band and a member of the Sour Sitrus Society. After graduating from SU, I hope to become a photojournalist and work for a major magazine, and my dream job is to be a photojournalist at National Geographic. One of my favorite perks of being in the Honors program is the option to take small, discussion-based classes where I can better engage with the class material, which really caters to my learning style. A fun fact about me is that I am an avid coin collector!


Picture of Hailey Williams
Hailey Williams
Hometown: Annapolis, MD
College of Arts & Sciences

Hailey Williams is a sophomore studying Political Philosophy. On campus, she is a part of the Advocacy Committee of Student African-American Society and the Editor’s Team for Femme Noir Magazine. Her career and educational goals include attending law school and becoming a human-rights lawyer after graduating from SU. What Hailey loves most about being in Honors is the faculty involved in the program as well as the diversity of Honors classes available to Honors students. For fun, Hailey enjoys watching/playing basketball and movie marathons.


Picture of Ava Breitbeck
Ava Breitbeck
Hometown: Syracuse, NY
College of Arts & Sciences

Ava is a junior double majoring in physics and political science. She is involved in several organizations on campus including University 100 and is an executive board member of the Arts and Sciences Dean’s Team. She also has several jobs on-campus which include working as an office assistant at the Center for Learning and Student Success and as a tour guide! She is also a CRLA certified tutor in physics and calculus. She loves that the honors program is interdisciplinary in nature and allows her to combine her interests into a unique field of study. She is currently doing research for her honors thesis, which will focus on government disinformation campaigns surrounding nuclear disasters. She hopes to get a masters degree and work in STEM. When she is not studying or working, you can find her reading or watching Harry Potter and Game of Thrones, walking around campus with friends, and most definitely cheering on the Orange. Go ‘Cuse!


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