Honors Congress

2022 Officer Board

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Alex VanBennekom

President

Alex is a 3rd year student majoring in Health Sciences on the pre-clinical track and minoring in Spanish. He was born and raised outside of Jacksonville and loves going to St. Augustine and Vilano Beach. Alex has been involved with Honors Congress since his first semester at UCF, serving time as a Social Affairs committee member, Director of Social Affairs, and Director of Recruitment and Membership, and he can’t wait to keep helping out in the capacity of President this year! In addition to Honors Congress, Alex has a myriad of involvement, ranging from TAing for Anatomy, volunteering in the Winnie Palmer NICU, serving as a BSBS Clinical Intern, and working as a cashier at Chick-Fil-A. In his free time he loves hanging out with friends and going shopping, and he likes coffee, music, volleyball, and meeting new people! 

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Taylor Haycock

Vice President

Taylor is a sophomore studying Political Science here at UCF. She was born in Mississippi, but as a military kid, spent most of her life moving around the world! Taylor was previously the Director of Social Affairs for Honors Congress, but now she is thrilled to handle the ‘behind-the-scenes’ affairs as Vice President. This semester, she is working as a Student Assistant for the Burnett Honors College and is part of two dance groups on campus, Knights and Damsels Dance Company and Rhythm of the Knight. If she can find a minute or ten, she’s either napping or on TikTok!

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Jake Hanson

Treasurer

Jake Hanson is a second-year student from Lakewood Ranch, Florida double majoring in Political Science (International Relations) and Sociology, with a minor in Marketing. He hopes to attend law school after graduating from UCF. Jake can usually be found traveling, spending time with friends, or making Spotify playlists. Outside of Honors Congress, Jake is also a second-year LEAD Scholar, involved in Student Government on the Judicial Leadership Council, and works as an Undergraduate Admissions Ambassador giving campus tours. Previously serving as the Director of Fundraising, Jake is excited to continue his involvement with Honors Congress!

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Janice Zou

Secretary

Janice is a third-year student from Orlando, Florida majoring in Mechanical Engineering and hoping to one day work in the aerospace or tech industry--we'll see where life goes! Besides being involved in Honors Congress, she has interned at Northrop Grumman (structural design engineer), is a CWEP intern with Lockheed Martin, and is involved with First Step UCF (mentor). Outside of school and studying, Janice enjoys exploring new places with her friends, playing the piano, drawing, and spending time with her family.

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Daniela Gomez-Dugan

Director of Recruitment & Membership

Daniela is a second-year student pursuing a Computer Science major with a Criminal Justice minor. She is originally from Puerto Rico but has lived in South Florida for the majority of her life. She is involved as an Undergraduate Learning Assistant, research volunteer with the College of Engineering & Computer Science and is in Mixed Mode Acapella. She is also going to be a Google Intern for the second time this summer! She is so excited to expand her role in Honors Congress from being the previous Director of Philanthropy to now Director of Recruitment and Membership. She is looking forward to seeing members at the upcoming events!

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Alysha Irvin

Director of Academic Affairs

Alysha is a second-year student from Tampa, Florida double majoring in Mechanical Engineering and Biomedical Sciences. She has been a member of Honors Congress since her first year and has served on both the Special Events committee in Spring 2021 and the Housing committee in Fall 2021. In addition to Honors Congress, she is the President of Knight's Bow Archery and works as an undergraduate researcher in a materials science research lab. In her free time, Alysha enjoys reading, playing video games, and baking.

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Archana Ram 

Director of Social Affairs

Archana is a first-year student from Phoenix, Arizona majoring in Biomedical Sciences. She hopes to attend medical school after graduating from UCF. Her experience with Honors Congress began when she was a member of the Committee of Social Affairs during her first semester at UCF. In her free time, Archana loves to be around nature, try different cuisines, and make every night karaoke night! Archana is excited to serve as Director of Social Affairs and cannot wait to see everyone at the events!

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Brianna Bergman

Director of Volunteer Affairs

Brianna is a second-year student majoring in Health Sciences (Pre-Clinical). She hopes to continue to focus on gaining healthcare experience and apply to Physician Associate school after graduating. Brianna has been involved with Honors Congress since the start of her freshman year by becoming a member of the Volunteer Affairs Committee and is now serving as the Director of Volunteer Affairs. She can't wait to see what volunteering opportunities she is able to bring to her fellow Honors Congress members. In addition to Honors Congress, she has been able to work with UCF outdoor adventure as a trip leader and a medical scribe at a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). 

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Michael Sola

Director of Housing Affairs

Michael is a first-year student majoring in Hospitality Management. He was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia before moving to Orlando for college. Michael is also currently working at Walt Disney World (come visit him at Trail’s End Restaurant!) and loves visiting theme parks around Central Florida. In his first semester, Michael was a member of the Housing Committee, and cannot wait to carry on the legacy!

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Uma Sriram

Director of Fundraising

Uma is a first-year student originally from Farmington Hills, MI. She is majoring in Biomedical Sciences and minoring in Women and Gender Studies. She hopes to attend medical school and become a pediatric cardiologist. In her free time, Uma loves to read a variety of genres, do henna for her friends, and go thrifting. Outside of Honors Congress, Uma is involved in LEAD, Cardiovascular Alliance, and PERIOD. Uma is excited to serve as Director of Fundraising and raise money for member-voted charities and nonprofits!

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Sandra Ford

Director of Publications & Marketing

Sandra is a second-year student from Cape Coral, Florida majoring in English on the Creative Writing track, as well as working towards an Editing and Publishing Certificate. She hopes to one day be a published author and is already working towards that goal. This is her second year as the Director of Publications & Marketing. She is also the production editor The Cypress Dome and President of the Cypress Dome Society, and is working on an Honors Undergraduate Thesis. In her free time, Sandra likes to write, read, and play video games.

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Mai Ly Nguyen-Luu

Historian

Mai Ly is a first-year student from Orlando, FL, and is majoring in Biomedical Sciences on the Pre-Med track. She began her involvement in Honors Congress as a member of the Historian Committee and is excited to continue the committee’s work as historian during the 2022 school year. Mai Ly is currently involved in numerous extracurriculars and clubs including Student Government, Asian Student Association, and Vietnamese-American Student Association (Cultural Dance Team). In her free time, she likes to attend dance classes/workshops of numerous styles, play the guitar, and video edit!

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Anthony Trombetta

Director of Special Events

Anthony is a first-year student from Cleveland, Ohio. He is currently double majoring in Biology and Political Science, hoping to either become an Orthopedic Surgeon or a Civil Rights/Social Justice Lawyer. Anthony joined Honors Congress during his first semester at UCF. He became a member of the Special Events Committee and was appointed the Director of Special Events for 2022. Outside of Honors Congress, Anthony is involved in Relay for Life, Pre-Med AMSA, and Knights Pre-Law Association. Some of Anthony’s hobbies outside of school include working out, cycling, swimming, and hanging out with friends. He is looking forward to being captain of the Honors College Relay for Life Team and is very excited to meet everyone!

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Jean Guadalupe-Nieves

Director of Philanthropy

Jean is a second-year student majoring in Health Sciences with a goal of attending medical school. At medical he plans on pursuing either emergency medicine or trauma surgery. He is originally from Puerto Rico but has spent the latter part of his life living in Orlando. In addition to Honors Congress he is involved in the Latino Medical Student Association as their Treasurer and volunteers on the Orthopedic Trauma Unit at ORMC. In his free time he enjoys playing and watching football, camping, and spending time with his family. He is looking forward to leading our Knight-Thon team for the upcoming year.