Honors Congress

2020 Officer Board

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Padmavathi Ganduri

President

Padmavathi is a fourth-year student majoring in Integrated Business with minors in Political Science and Leadership Studies. She was born in India, but has spent most of her life in Tampa, Florida. She hopes to attend law school after graduating from UCF. She is part of the Judicial Branch of SGA and volunteers with the Orange County Legal Aid Society. She is also a UCF CWEP intern at Lockheed Martin. Padmavathi has been involved with Honors Congress since her first semester at UCF by becoming a member of the Social Committee and later serving as Director of Fundraising and Treasurer. In her free time, Padmavathi loves to play flute, sing, watch movies, take pictures, and travel.

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Parshva Sanghvi

Vice President

Parshva is a third-year student from Canton, Michigan. He is currently majoring in Biomedical Sciences and hopes to go to medical school after completing his undergraduate years. Parshva played tennis in high school for all four years and continues playing in college recreationally. His other interests include music, cooking, and going to the gym.

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Aliya Centner

Treasurer

Aliya is a fourth-year student from Orlando, Florida majoring in Biomedical Sciences with a minor in Health Sciences. Aliya is a Burnett Medical Scholar and plans on attending medical school after she graduates from UCF. She has been a member of Honors Congress since her first semester, served on the Special Events and Fundraising committees, and was the 2019 Director of Special Events. Aliya is also a LEAD Scholar graduate, volunteers at Nemours Children’s Hospital, and is on the UCF Relay for Life Executive Board. In her free time, Aliya enjoys watching Kentucky basketball, watching shows on Netflix, and traveling. She is excited for another great semester with Honors Congress!

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Victoria Millington

Secretary

Victoria is a fourth-year student from Tampa, Florida. She is majoring in Biomedical Sciences with a minor in Health Science. After receiving her Bachelor's degree, Victoria plans to attend Medical School or pursue a PhD in Cancer Biology.  Along with being an Honors Congress Officer, Victoria is the Director for Relay For Life, a peer mentor in the Burnett School of Biomedical Sciences, volunteers at Shepherd's Hope, and conducts research in Dr. von Kalm's research lab. She also loves the beach, animals, and anything red, white, and blue. This semester Victoria hopes to adopt a dog to call her own.

Safia Centner

Director of Recruitment & Membership

Safia is a fourth-year student majoring in Health Sciences, pre-clinical. She has been a member of Honors Congress since her first semester of freshman year, serving for one semester on the Philanthropy committee and for two semesters on the Historian committee.  Last year, she served as the Director of Publications and Marketing of Honors Congress. Safia is a Burnett Medical Scholar and plans to go to medical school after college. Safia is a volunteer at Nemours Children’s Hospital, Team Communication Chair for UCF Relay for Life, and co-founder of a nonprofit organization (along with her twin sister). When she isn’t studying, Safia loves to bake, binge-watch Netflix, and travel. Her favorite place she has ever been is Iceland! She is excited to serve as this year’s Director of Recruitment and Membership and Marketing and work with the amazing officer board!

Ridha Anjum

Director of Academic Affairs

Ridha is a second-year Biomedical Sciences student with the Burnett Medical Scholars Program. She plans to minor in psychology and attend medical school in the future. Ridha is an SI Leader for Chemistry, and is a volunteer at University Hospitals and the food pantry in her hometown of Cleveland, Ohio. In her free time, Ridha enjoys reading, spending time with friends, taking photographs, and visiting art museums. She loves to travel, and hopes to visit every continent… 3 down, 4 to go! Ridha served on the Academic Affairs committee during her first semester at UCF before she was elected Director. She is very excited about the Honors Congress events coming up this fall, especially the mentorship program, and can’t wait to see everyone there!

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Alex VanBennekom

Director of Social Affairs

Alex is a second-year student from Jacksonville, FL with a major in Health Sciences and a minor in Spanish. He hopes to further his studies in medical school and aims to eventually become a neonatologist. He is currently involved with volunteer work at the Winnie Palmer Hospital to become a “baby cuddler,” and also works as a children’s camp counselor over the summer. He loves the beach, volleyball, all types of games, movies, and pop music. Alex is a Meyers-Briggs ENFP, specifically 100% extroverted, and loves meeting new people.

Alik Manoogian

Director of Volunteer Affairs

Alik is a third-year student majoring in Biomedical Sciences and minoring in Psychology and Medical Sociology. She was born and raised in Florida, but plans to continue pursuing a future in medicine somewhere up north after completing her undergraduate degree. A member of Honors Congress and the Volunteer Affairs Committee since the start of freshman year, she is excited to continue giving back to the community and working with members as a director this year! In addition to Honors Congress, Alik works as a lab monitor in the Honors College Computer Lab and is in the process of becoming a certified EMT. A few of her hobbies include exploring new places, drinking coffee and tea, reading, and photography.

Abel Birchfield

Director of Housing Affairs

Abel is a third-year Mechanical Engineering major who loves UCF but has yet to decide upon his future aspirations. A sedulous student hailing from Seattle, Washington, Abel dabbles in a wide and burgeoning smorgasbord of interests that includes playing music and sports, exploring nature, visiting Orlando’s world-class theme parks, and memorizing otiose information. Abel is a graduate of the LEAD Scholars Academy and the president of Tau Beta Pi, the Engineering Honor Society at UCF. He is eager to perform his duties as the Director of Housing Affairs and can’t wait to meet his fellow HonCon members on campus this semester!

Brent Feldman

Director of Fundraising

Brent is a second-year student double majoring in Biomedical Sciences and Biotechnology with a minor in Leadership Studies. He has spent most of his life in the Jacksonville area. He hopes to attend medical school after graduating from UCF. Brent has been involved in honors congress since his first semester, and was on the fundraising committee before being elected as director. Brent has a strong interest in being involved in the community. In addition to being an Honors Congress officer, Brent is Vice President of the Towers Area Council, is a LEAD Scholar, and has worked in the district office of Orlando-area Florida House Representative Anna Eskamani. In his free time, Brent enjoys playing music, exploring Orlando, cooking, and going to the gym.

Janice Zou

Director of Publications & Marketing

Janice is a second-year student from Orlando, Florida majoring in Mechanical Engineering and hoping to one day work in the aerospace or power/energy industry. Besides being involved in Honors Congress, she is also involved with the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (Social Media & Design officer), First Step UCF (mentor), and the Asian Pacific American Coalition (co-Creative Director). Outside of school and studying, Janice enjoys exploring new places with her friends, playing the piano, drawing, and spending time with her family.

Cristina Bertot

Historian

Cristina is a second-year student at UCF, currently pursuing degrees in Biology and Spanish. She was born and raised in the Central Florida area. In her free time, Cristina enjoys reading, spending time with friends, and playing the piano- a long lost talent from her childhood. Cristina is also an active member of the LEAD Scholars Academy at UCF. Her involvement with the Honors Congress started in fall of 2019, where she jumped right in as a member of the Historian committee before being elected Historian for 2020. 

Melissa Millington

Director of Special Events

Melissa is a second-year student studying Business Management and planning on getting a certificate in Entrepreneurship and a minor in Marketing. She is from Tampa, Florida and loves the beach and the warm weather. After graduating, she is excited to open her own business and make an impact in the world. In addition to Honors Congress, Melissa is involved in UCF’s SGA as a Senator for the 52nd Session and as a member on the Conference Registration and Travel Committee. She also volunteers with Relay for Life and can’t wait to lead the Honors College RFL team as the new 2020 Team Captain. In her free time, Melissa likes to meet new people, listen to music, and grab food with friends!

Henry Bright

Director of Philanthropy

Henry is a second-year Aerospace Engineering major from Columbus, Ohio. He started working with Honors Congress in his first semester at UCF as a member of the Philanthropy committee and is very excited to lead the committee for 2020. Outside of Honors Congress, Henry is also involved with UCF club tennis, Cru (on campus Christian fellowship organization), and the Igknighters, the student section leaders for UCF men’s basketball. When not working on classwork, you can probably find him playing tennis, watching just about any sport, or hanging out in nature. He is very excited for his first chance to captain the Honors Congress KnightThon team for the whole school year, and hopes you will join the fundraising team!

Where Are We?

The Honors Congress office is located at the Burnett Honors College Computer Lab and is open on the weekdays. For office hours, click here.

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