Peer Mentors

Group of twenty-one peer mentors.

A Peer Mentor within the OASIS Student Success Program (OSSP) conducts engaging mentoring sessions and assists students with their academic, social, and cultural engagement as they transition to UNL during the students’ first year. Peer Mentors develop an enduring, trusting relationship with students and help them:   

1) With the transition from high school to college through one-on-one interactions and group meetings  

2) Develop effective study strategies and life skills to implement within and outside the classroom as students work toward individual academic and personal goals.   

3) Become more involved on campus by referring them to appropriate department workshops and/or campus resources.

Meet the Mentor Leadership Team


 Sara Al-Rishawi


Hi! I'm Sara Al-Rishawi, a junior from Lincoln, Nebraska. I decided to become a peer mentor to help other first-year students who want to take advantage of their college years to grow and develop toward their goals, as that was something that I benefited from my first year on campus as an Oasis mentee. Fun Fact: I love traveling and hope to do more someday!


Abraham Cervantes Garcia


My name is Abraham Cervantes Garcia, and I am a Junior Electrical Engineering major. For me, Home has been Lincoln, NE. I was born in Monterrey, Mexico, and immigrated to the US when I was about three years old. Lincoln has been very open to my family, allowing me to grow and thrive in this community. I chose to become a peer mentor as I truly believe in the importance of promoting diversity and creating a welcoming environment for all students at UNL. Fun Fact: I used to work as a Hibachi chef, where I learned tricks such as making a volcano and catching an egg in my hat.


Rukhshona Islamova


Hi! My name is Rukhshona Islamova, and I was raised in Lincoln, NE, but my parents immigrated here from Tajikistan. A small country in Central Asia, Tajikistan is my other home, and visiting every 1-2 years has become an integral part of my life. By belonging to these two places, I delve into the best parts of my culture in my day-to-day life. I chose to be a peer mentor because I started as a mentee, and the sense of community I gained from OASIS was unparalleled by anything I experienced. I thought, what better way to keep that going for myself and others than to become a peer mentor?? A fun fact about me: the spicier the food, the better. 

Noah Haidul


I am a second-year student majoring in accounting. The reason why I became a Peer Mentor is to help other new students on trying to get used to college life and trying to find a safe place for them. A fun fact about me is that I am color blind (deuteranopia).

Meet the Peer Mentors

Meklit Aga


Hello! I'm Meklit, a fourth year originally from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. I became a peer mentor to support first-year students academically and through the college transition. Fun fact, I've run a half-marathon before!


Janelly Hidalgo


Hi! I'm Janelly, a senior from El Paso, Texas, studying chemical engineering. I decided to become a peer mentor because of the positive experience I had through the OASIS program during my freshman year as an out-of-state student. I want to help guide others into their first year at UNL. Fun Fact: I've been to 12 countries!

portrait of Keanna Stanley

Keanna Stanley


Hi! My name is Keanna Stanley, and I'm a junior from Lincoln, NE. I chose to become a mentor because I want to be able to help students with the transition to college and show them resources to help them get the most out of their college experience. Fun Fact: I love animals and work at a vet clinic here in Lincoln!


Jay Williams


My name is Jay Williams, and I will be a second-year student at UNL (class of 2025). I am a Psychology major on the Clinical Psychology track with minors in Sexuality Studies and Sociology. I decided to become a peer mentor to give back to OASIS for helping me through my first year of college and pay it forward to other students entering college in the fall.


Zachary Ninete


Hi! My name is Zach, and I am from Omaha, Nebraska. I wanted to become a peer mentor to help students explore and grow as individuals when coming to campus. Fun Fact: In my freshman year, I studied abroad in Japan!


Amy Kadyrova


Hi! I'm Amy Kadyrova, and I am from Kearney, Nebraska. I chose to become a peer mentor because I want to support incoming students with their transition to college, getting involved, and reaching their goals. Fun Fact: I love hiking and traveling!

Alana Ross


Hello! I'm Alana, and I am from Houston, Texas. I wanted to help students become prepared for college and grow into their own unique identities. Fun Fact: I've been to New Hampshire twice!


Jessie Nguyen


Hi! I'm Jessie Nguyen from Lincoln, NE, and I chose to be a peer mentor because I wanted to help students to find a community and friendships as I was able to during my time in OASIS. A fun fact about me is I once won a raffle for free axe throwing.


Madalynn Janousek


My name is Mady Janousek. I am a sophomore from Papillion, NE, studying economics and accounting. I chose to be a peer mentor because I want to help students find their community on campus and provide support to help everyone succeed. Fun fact, I love card and board games!

Maya   Maya Elias


Hey! My name is Maya Elias, and I'm a junior from Lincoln. I chose to be a mentor because of my mentor's positive impact on my first year at UNL. I want to encourage first-year students to find their place on campus and feel comfortable having a community through OASIS. A fun fact about me is that I am left-handed.


Khader Khoudeda


Hi, my name is Khader Khoudeda, and I am a computer science major born and raised in Lincoln, Nebraska. Home for me is both in Lincoln and Northern Iraq. Being in touch with my culture and people is a big part of my identity. I decided to become a mentor due to my mentor's positive impact on me; I want to give other people that feeling of being backed by a community. One fun fact about me is I'm a sneakerhead.


Ryan Tran


Hello! My name is Ryan Tran, and I am from Lincoln, NE, in my 2nd year at UNL. I became a peer mentor because I wanted to help students transition from high school to college life comfortably. Fun fact, I work at the hospital!


Mandy Tran


Hey! My name is Mandy Tran, and I'm from Omaha, NE, and I am going into my junior year at UNL. I chose to become a peer mentor because I want new students to have someone in their corner as soon as they arrive at UNL. I would love to be that person for someone to lean on and confide in as needed throughout their transition from high school to college. Fun fact: I really like concerts!

Maria Nunes Dias


Hi, I'm Maria, an international student from Brazil. Home for me is wherever the people I love are, which makes home possible in multiple places worldwide. I chose to be a mentor because I want to connect with students; I love helping people in the ways they most need help, as simple as it may be. I also love connecting with different groups and people and learning from them as much as I hope they learn from me. Fun fact: I got stuck in Ecuador during the pandemic, and it was one of the most amazing trips I've ever had!

Kendra Marshall

Kendra Marshall


Hi! My name is Kendra Marshall, and I am a Junior Psychology Neuroscience and Biological Sciences double major. I was born here in Lincoln but grew up in Illinois. Nebraska has always been a home for me, so it was an easy choice when choosing where to go to college. I chose to be a mentor because I love to help people find their place here and guide them through the transition process. I love to make new friends and am so excited to meet the incoming freshman at UNL this year! FUN FACT: I grew up in a town called Normal.