Our veteran ambassadors are veterans, just like you, who have made the transition to the civilian world. This group is for all active Undergraduate Admissions Ambassadors.
Dajon enlisted in the United States Marine Corps directly after graduating high school with a 1.3 GPA. His five years of experience abroad as an Intelligence Analyst across the Middle East and Asia-Pacific led him to develop an interest in international law and foreign policy. Online schooling overseas and a few classes at Northampton Community College resulted in an overall GPA of 3.92 and earned an admission to the University of Pennsylvania. Dajon is pursuing a double major in political and cognitive sciences and will be preparing to apply to law school in early 2018. Coming from a faulty history in academics, he is fully prepared to bridge the gap for hesitant applicants with similar backgrounds.
Tom Sullivan is a junior at Georgetown School of Continuing Studies. He served in the U.S Army for seven years as a satellite communications operator, network controller, and planner. He provided contractor support to the Department of Justice in Iraq from 2004 to 2005 and works as a subject matter expert and consultant in the field of satellite communications. He is a graduate of the Warrior-Scholar Project, and serves on the board of directors of the GUSVA as the School of Continuing Studies Liaison.
Melissa was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio. In 2007, she graduated from Hiram College, with a BA in Psychology and Gender Studies. She then attended Boston University School of Medicine’s Graduate Medical Sciences program and earned her Master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling and Behavioral Medicine. After working in both research and clinical settings, she pursued employment with the United States Air Force, working as an Intelligence Analyst. She has deployed to Afghanistan and Djibouti. Though still on active duty orders, she has advised many service members on both undergraduate and graduate school options and the application process. She firmly believes that Veterans offer a unique background to be desired by top schools and businesses and is passionate about helping others reach their educational and professional goals.
Originally from Wisconsin, Michael served as a Sergeant in the United States Marine Corps as a combat engineer and later as a Sapper Leaders Course Instructor for 1st Combat Engineer Battalion. He was stationed out of Camp Pendleton, CA. Michael left the Marine Corps in 2015 to pursue a degree in International Relations. He attended Saddleback College in Mission Viejo, CA before transferring to Brown University. Michael also attended the Warrior-Scholar Project, 2-week course at Yale University. He is interested in International Law, particularly Space Law. Michael feels a strong obligation to pass on his knowledge of navigating the application process of highly selective schools and helping veterans be educated consumers of their VA education benefits.
Upon graduation from high school, Ryan enlisted in the military. He served twelve years in the Navy, predominantly within the field of Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD), and has deployed to the Middle East and Afghanistan with various units including SEAL and Army Special Forces teams. In 2014, he left active duty in order to pursue a traditional liberal arts education, and applied to the Eli Whitney Students Program while attending community college in California. Ryan is currently a Political Science major at Yale, and is interested in the study of strategic and theoretical frameworks as they apply to complex phenomenon like war and political violence. Outside of the classroom, he is co-captain of Yale’s competitive powerlifting team, a member of the rock climbing team, and also continues to serve in the Naval Reserves.
Thomas graduated from the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD with a Bachelor of Science in Honors Political Science as a Marine Corps Burke Scholar. First Lieutenant Payne was commissioned in the U.S. Marine Corps in May 2012. After graduating TBS, he reported to the Infantry Officers Course (IOC), and was designated as an infantry officer upon completion of training. Upon completion of IOC in June 2013, he was transferred to 1st Battalion, 8th Marines, in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina as a rifle platoon commander and deployed to the Western Pacific under the Unit Deployment Program supporting military exercises in the Philippines, Thailand, and Malaysia. He is currently deployed in support of the Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response Africa (SPMAGTF-CR-AF) as the executive officer for Company B, 1st Battalion, 8th Marines. His long term goal is to start his own business.
Stephanie is currently pursuing a degree in Biochemistry with a concentration on Pre-Health and a minor in Women’s Studies at Hawaii Pacific University. She enlisted in 2009 as a Health Care Specialist/Combat Medic and was stationed in Ft. Riley, KS and Schofield Barracks, HI. She deployed twice during her military career, once to Iraq and once to Afghanistan. She works as an Emergency Room Technician at the Kaiser Hospital in Honolulu. She volunteers as an online mentor on icoulbe.org, an online community that provides at-risk middle and high school students a way to connect with professional mentors; a Big Sister in Big Brothers Big Sisters Hawai’i; a Wish Granter in Make a Wish Hawai’i; a Job Coach in YWCA O’ahu, and tutors on a regular basis. She looks forward to helping veterans have a smooth transition back to school.
Born in Bangkok, Thailand, Theerawat (Theo) grew up in a small town in Louisiana and graduated from Loreauville High School. From 2013-2015, he served as Engineer Operator and Training Non-Commissioned Officer in the Marine Corps through 9th Engineer Support Battalion, where he was awarded the Navy Marine Corps Achievement Medal (NAM). Upon completion of his service, Theo moved to San Diego, CA, and attended Palomar Community College. Via Service to School, he has been accepted to Stanford University for Fall 2016 as a Management Science & Engineering major. He looks forward to helping other veterans as they transition to a 4-year university.
Moses Cho grew up in San Jose, California, and graduated from Lynbrook High School. He served in the Marine Corps from 2010-2014, where he was an Amphibious Assault Vehicle Technician. He deployed to Okinawa, Japan through the Unit Deployment Program, and then deployed to the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit with 3rd Battalion 5th Marine Regiment. Upon completion of his military service, Moses returned home to San Jose, and attended De Anza Community College. With the help of Service to School, he has been accepted to Yale as an Economics major, and will begin attending Fall of 2016.
Joe is a Chicago native who served eight years as an infantry rifleman with 2nd Bn 24th Marines. His military awards include a Combat Action Ribbon, Selected Marine Corps Reserve Medal and Iraq Campaign Medal. Joe also worked a government contract as a firearms instructor for the Navy at RTC Great Lakes, tasked with training new recruits. Joe is currently pursuing a PhD in Physics at Berkeley.
Murphy Costigan grew up in the Washington D.C. area, and graduated from Bishop Ireton high school. In 2013 he enlisted in the U.S. Navy for four years stationed in San Diego, California. He spent 22 months deployed all over Southeast Asia working in navigation for the USS Green Bay. Inspired by his leaders in the military he quickly valued the importance of a college education. While stationed in California, he spent most of his off duty hours studying to raise his standardized test scores. He took four SAT's and three ACT's while being tutored in math at the University of San Diego. He joined S2S as an applicant in 2015 while deployed in the Philippines. Murphy will begin his undergraduate career at Columbia University School of General Studies in January 2017.
Ryan Hough graduated from the US Naval Academy in 2000 and was subsequently commissioned as a 2nd Lt. in the United States Marine Corps. Following completion of Naval Flight School, Ryan became an AV-8B Harrier jet pilot. From 2003-2013 he deployed to both Iraq and Afghanistan twice, three times as a pilot and once as a joint terminal attack controller (JTAC) with Marine Special Operations Command (MARSOC). Ryan was the aide-de-camp to the commanding general of the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, and served as the strategic planner/ speech writer for the Deputy Commandant of Aviation at Headquarters Marine Corps. In 2015 he took an early retirement to spend more time with his wife and three sons.
Tony grew up in Cape Cod, MA. He served in the U.S. Air Force from 2010-2016. After graduating from the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California, he was stationed at Fort Gordon, Georgia where he served various corners of the intelligence community as an Arabic Language Analyst. As a Staff Sergeant, he performed Mission Manager duties which involved strategic posturing of several agencies in response to evolving threats in the Middle East and safeguarding millions in assets, awarding him the Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Technician of the Year. Tony wants to broaden his scope of the world and is pursuing a B.A. at Yale University in Global Affairs ('19). He looks forward to empowering veterans by helping to bridge the gap of understanding between military accomplishments and civilian potential at elite institutions.
Dilia Barboza is a MilVet student at the School of General Studies, Columbia University. This is her third year working toward her B.A. in psychology. Before joining the program, she was a Gunnery Sergeant in the United States Marine Corps. During her time on active duty she realized how passionate she felt about advocacy and mentoring. Her experiences in the military allow her to see and understand the veteran and the complexity of the transition into civilian life.
Matt Draheim graduated from Williams College with a B.A. in Political Economy in 2009. He attended Officer Candidate School and received a commission in the U.S. Army in 2010. He completed training as an Infantry officer in 2011 and was assigned to 3rd Brigade, 101st Airborne Division. He served as both a platoon leader and executive officer while deployed to Afghanistan with 1st Squadron, 33rd Cavalry Regiment. In 2013, Matt assessed for and was accepted to 3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment. He served as the platoon leader for the Battalion Reconnaissance Platoon. Following his second deployment, Matt attended the Maneuver Captains Career Course. He currently serves as a brigade operations officer in the 1st Cavalry Division. Matt plans on pursuing a MBA in 2017.
Joe graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy with a B.S. in Economics in 2010. After his initial training as a Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal Officer, Joe was assigned to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit Five in Santa Rita, Guam. During his time at Mobile Unit Five, Joe deployed to a variety of locations throughout the Pacific region to conduct humanitarian demining operations and support theater special operations forces. Additionally, Joe completed a M.S. in Cybersecurity Policy from the University of Maryland University College. Joe will be separating from active duty and plans to pursue an MBA in the fall of 2017.
Ben served in the Navy as a submarine reactor operator from 2010 - 2016. After graduating from the naval nuclear propulsion school in 2012 he was stationed on the USS Maryland where he completed multiple patrols based out of Kings Bay, GA and performed a reactor refuel & engine room overhaul in Portsmouth, VA. He overcame a poor academic background to be accepted at Williams College where he is pursuing a B.A. in Economics ('20), and looks forward to helping other veterans make the leap from military service to top-tier schools.
Reagan is a Pat Tillman Scholar and is currently at Stanford University pursuing a degree in Economics. Before transferring to Stanford she served four years active duty in the Marine Corps as an Aviation Ordnance Technician and as a Female Engagement Team Leader. Reagan deployed to Afghanistan in 2010 and then again in 2012. In 2013 she left active duty to return to school and looks forward to working with other veterans preparing to transition back to school.
Grant enlisted in the Marine Corps in 2004 and served for eight and a half years. He served as a Marine Scout Sniper and deployed three times in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom with First Battalion First Marines, eventually obtaining the billet of Scout Sniper Team Leader. In 2008, Grant reported to the First Marine Division Scout Sniper School in Camp Pendleton, CA to serve as a Sniper Instructor, where he remained until he separated in 2012. Grant began attending community college at Santa Monica College in Santa Monica, CA in 2013 and transferred to UCLA the following fall. Grant graduated from UCLA with a B.A. in anthropology in the spring of 2016 and is currently a law student at the Pepperdine University School of Law in Malibu, CA.
Luis attended high school and community college in California before joining the Marine Corps in 2009 and serving with 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines out of Camp Pendleton, California. He deployed to Helmand Province, Afghanistan in 2010 and then spent time overseas with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit. Upon leaving active duty in 2014 as a Sergeant, Luis moved back to Los Angeles and is currently completing a B.A. in Sociology at the University of California Los Angeles.