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Meet the Coaches

Our peer coaches offer one-to-one academic coaching personalized to each student's needs. Meet the team below.

Nihmotallahi Adebayo

Nihmotallahi Adebayo

WCAS, Class of 2019

What I wish I'd known as a first year: I wish I'd known that being pre-med didn't mean that I had to follow the same path that others do. That I could decide for myself what courses I wanted to take at a certain point without feeling like I was somehow falling behind other pre-med students.

My biggest academic challenge: Asking for help and admitting to myself that getting help for something I find difficult whether in academics or regarding my emotional and mental health doesn't make me weak.

Best piece of advice I've ever received: The best advice I've received thus far is to take a breather and do what I can. That there's no need to rush things and instead I should focus on doing what works for me while making sure to celebrate both the little and big things that I once thought I couldn't do or overcome.

Favorite restaurant in Evanston: Joy Yees (I'm more than a little obsessed with their shrimp fried rice).

 
Karen Adjei

Karen Adjei

WCAS, Class of 2018

What I wish I'd known as a first year: Talk with professors! They have more insights on how to get the most out of class that aren't always mentioned during class time, and talking with them about any challenges I have has always improved my class experience.

My biggest academic challenge: Learning to accept that not every task or responsibility needs 100% of my energy or attention in order to do well.

Fun fact about me: I play the violin in Philharmonia.

Favorite sweet/savory treat: Gelato/hot cheetos!

Avery Dempsey

Avery Dempsey

McCormick, Class of 2018

What I wish I'd known as a first year: I wish I'd known how many times I would change my mind about what I want to do with my life post-undergrad, because I think it would have helped me be okay with occasionally doing badly on tests or homework if I didn't feel like I was stuck on that career track.

My biggest academic challenge: I sometimes struggle with keeping myself motivated to stick with my study schedule.

Favorite thing about NU: The availability of resources for students. It's good to know that there's somewhere to turn when I'm struggling with anything.

Best piece of advice I've ever received: It's never too late to go back and change your mind if you don't like what you're doing.

Sarah Dynia

Sarah Dynia

WCAS, Class of 2019

What I wish I'd known as a first year: That it was totally normal to feel like I was sinking instead of swimming in some of my classes. I was definitely shaken by the change of being the top of my class to rarely getting the scores I wanted. Once I talked to my peers and realized that this was not at all uncommon, I felt much more confident in myself and my place at Northwestern.

My biggest academic challenge: Time management. I sometimes need the pressure of an upcoming deadline to get started, which leaves me much less time than I would like to study or complete an assignment.

Favorite place to study on campus: My favorite place to study on campus is empty classrooms, especially in Kresge. It's quiet, spacious, and you can use an expo board!

Fun fact about me: My family and I are all huge Game of Thrones fans – in fact, we named our pet birds after some of the characters!

Rosalie Gambrah

Rosalie Gambrah

WCAS, Class of 2018

What I wish I'd known as a first year: Dropping a class is not the end of the world! [A]s a freshman, it seems very dramatic - I thought taking an "underload" would ruin my academic career, and it was better to have a poor grade on my transcript. Little did I know a student [can] drop three classes with no real penalties; my mental wellness suffered significantly, and I was very stressed amidst my transition to college. I cannot imagine the weight that would have been lifted off my shoulders if I had just dropped this class and additionally, building my GPA from this quarter has not been easy.

My biggest academic challenge: Transitioning to the fast pace of the quarter system. As a senior and after four years of this system, I still have not gotten used to it. It is a big transition from high school curriculum and as a person who uses up every minute for a test, I like time to digest and apply materials.

Favorite thing about NU: The people - I have met my lifelong friends here!

Fun fact about me: I failed my driver's license test five times and got it on the sixth. Never give up!

Maria Leon

Maria Leon

WCAS, Class of 2018

What I wish I'd known as a first year: It's okay to fail and it's okay to ask stupid questions. It is better to get help earlier rather than later even if you feel like you might be wasting your professor's time, there generally happy to help and truly care about your success!

My biggest academic challenge: I've had many setbacks, but I would say that just getting over the feeling of thinking you aren't good enough to be here and you will never be able to succeed was hardest for me. By reaching out for help when I felt like I was drowning I was able to pick myself back up and was reminded that I got into this incredibly prestigious university on my own merit and on my own blood, sweat, and tears. Just having someone remind me of how strong and dedicated I truly am pushed me forward and motivated me to get everything organized and come to terms with the fact that giving my best effort was more rewarding than whatever letter or number I got on an assignment.

Favorite sweet/savory treat: Anything with cheese holds a special place in my heart!

Best piece of advice I've ever received: Don't take yourself too seriously and always remember that the growing/learning experience is more important that a grade that you won't remember in 5 years.

Ella Lombard

Ella Lombard

WCAS, Class of 2019

What I wish I'd known as a first year: It's OK not to know what you want to do with your life, or even in school. It's OK for your passions and interests to change - in fact, it's a sign that you're experiencing personal growth. And most importantly, it's OK to struggle, to be uncertain, and to fail along the way.

My biggest academic challenge: Solving quantitative problems under pressure.

Favorite place to study on campus: Deering!

Best piece of advice I've ever received: "Go to bed" - my mother.

Jamilah Silver

Jamilah Silver

SESP, Class of 2019

What I wish I'd known as a first year: One bad grade is not the end of the world.

My biggest academic challenge: Managing academics with extracurriculars that I want to partake in.

Favorite thing about NU: The lakefill.

Best piece of advice I've ever received: There's nothing you can't grow from.

Trent Steelman

Trent Steelman

WCAS, Class of 2020

What I wish I'd known as a first year: I wish I'd known that there are a ton of resources on campus to help with virtually any problem I might have, and people are happy to help almost all of the time.

My biggest academic challenge: I struggled greatly with keeping up with the material in my math class the first quarter. I stayed with it and tried several different strategies until I was able to feel successful.

Fun Fact: I am a trumpet player.

Best piece of advice I've ever received: If you don't have passion, you have nothing at all.

Colin Wang

Colin Wang

WCAS, Class of 2018

What I wish I'd known as a first year: I wish I'd known how approachable the faculty are. Professors who teach here not only love their work, they're also passionate about engaging students and fostering those same interests. If you're struggling, reaching out to your professor for help or guidance is an invaluable strategy.

My biggest academic challenge: Keeping track of my assignments and responsibilities. A technique that I frequently use is creating a detailed, well-defined schedule in Google Calendar so I can always see what I have to do.

Fun fact about me: I was born in Scotland.

Favorite Evanston restaurant: Peppercorn's Kitchen