The Peer Mentor program is an exciting program whose purpose is to create a community for undeclared students. It’s an opportunity for current undeclared students to meet with former undeclared students with the goal of sharing their major declaration story. This includes what worked for them, what didn’t work, challenges, and successes. The idea is that there is hope that every University Studies student will declare a major that’s a good fit for them. Furthermore, by hearing someone else’s story, each student will feel empowered and motivated to actively participate in their own journey.

Peer Mentors participate in an intense training where they learn communication skills, policies, resource referral, and understand the resources available to undeclared students. They are a guide, a non-judgmental listener, a supporter, an encourager, and a resource.

To learn more, contact your advisor, or Tracy Malz at

Meet the Peer Mentors

Picture of Kate Pelszynski, Architecture

Kate Pelszynski, Architecture

Last Names Ac - Bn

Kate is an Architecture student. She declared her major after taking a handful of exploratory classes and performing informational interviews. What she wishes she knew as a freshman is that “No one has everything figured out and it's ok to change your mind!”

Picture of Brittany Koch, Education with a concentration in Spanish

Brittany Koch, Education with a concentration in Spanish

Last Names Bo - C

Brittany is a Spanish and Education major in the College of Education. She came into Temple Undeclared because she had interests but did not want to get stuck in something she would regret. Being an undeclared student allowed her to explore her options and choose the best fit. Utilizing the advisers and group advising sessions allowed her to formulate a schedule fit for her. Currently, Brittany loves her major classes and may continue at Temple to get her masters degree in the Spanish program.

Picture of Vanshil Thakkar, MIS/ Fox

Vanshil Thakkar, MIS/ Fox

Last Names D - F

Vanshil is a Junior in the Fox School of Business as a Management Information Systems (MIS) major. He is a member of the Ultimate Frisbee team (Temple Alert), and wants to help other students find their passions as he did. “Finding an extracurricular you enjoy helps you connect with students of all different backgrounds and interests”. He’s very excited to be a peer mentor and I can't wait to assist new students coming to Temple.

Picture of Sam Titus, Political Science/Sociology

Sam Titus, Political Science/Sociology

Last Names G - H

Sam is a junior Political Science and Sociology double major. He grew up in an extremely small town in Connecticut and did not know what major or career path he wanted to go down. He came to Temple, he was very overwhelmed and lost. He found that Political Science and Sociology had classes that he really enjoyed and professors that he liked. He’s also considering going to law school or a post-graduate program with sociological research after graduation. His major exploration took a long time and is still continuing. Sam wants to be a peer mentor because he want to help students who are going through similar situations that he dealt with. Uncertainty is very stressful and he wants to help students who are dealing with this uncertainty. If he were to give a piece of advice to an incoming student, he would tell them to try as many things as they can and don’t let opportunities pass them by. He would encourage incoming students to join clubs and meet as many people as possible.

Picture of Natalie Willis, Early Childhood Education, concentration in Special Education

Natalie Willis, Early Childhood Education, concentration in Special Education

Last Names I - L

Natalie is a senior Early Childhood Education major with a concentration in Special Education. Natalie has wanted to be a teacher for as long as she can remember, but there are many different paths she could've chosen to follow my dream. Coming to Temple allowed her to learn about different careers in education and take classes that provide real experience to help her decide what she wants to pursue. Outside of classes, she sing in Temple's queer advocacy a cappella group, Pitch, Please, which she joined in the fall of her freshman year. Both her major and my singing group have led her to new experiences and people that have helped her grow more than she ever thought possible.

Picture of Ava Derago, Psychology

Ava Derago, Psychology

Last Names Ma - Me

Ava is a Psychology major. Ava says what she wishes she knew as a Freshman is... "You are not alone! There are many other students in the same boat as you. Finding the right path is not easy but with some guidance you will find your way. Temple has so many programs that are designed to help you so take advantage of them."

Picture of Hannah Kalup, Public Health

Hannah Kalup, Public Health

Last Names Mf - O

Hannah is a Public Health major taking prerequisites for Occupational Therapy master programs. When she is not studying for her classes, she works part time as a restaurant hostess. Also, she is an executive board member of Temple's non-profit chapter of A Moment of Magic. With her busy schedule she enjoys spending her free time with her family and friends. She is so excited to be a peer mentor for the 2020-2021 school year to help guide students who went through a similar experience to her when it comes to figuring out college life.

Picture of Julianne Borst, Art Therapy/Creative Entrepreneurship Certificate

Julianne Borst, Art Therapy/Creative Entrepreneurship Certificate

Last Names P - R

Julianne is an Art Therapy major pursuing a certificate in Creative Entrepreneurship. She is a stage manager for Temple’s sketch comedy club Temple SMASH and is a customer at Bagel Hut more often than she’d like to admit. A big lesson she realized along her path as a University Studies student is that learning what you don’t like within a major is just as important as discovering what you do. Don’t be afraid to take a step that feels a little uncertain but excites you, because most of the time it will lead you in the right direction. She’s been in those same shoes and is so thrilled to be helping new students find their right fit, in whatever way best suits them!

Picture of Emma Szymanski, Psychology

Emma Szymanski, Psychology

Last Names S - T

Emma Szymanski is a Psychology major and Neuroscience minor. After she graduates from Temple, she plans on going to graduate school to receive her Masters in Clinical Psychology. She is currently the President of the Temple Outdoors Club and is also a current member of the Psi Chi Honors Society and Alpha Phi Omega Co-Ed Fraternity at Temple. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, yoga, and photography. She also loves to travel and learn about new cultures!

Picture of Anne Roe, Community Development

Anne Roe, Community Development

Last Names U - Z

Anne is declared in the Tyler School of Art and Architecture as a Community Development major with a concentration in Real Estate. She is a member of Temple’s Community Development Club. She has worked in the office of Campus Recreation since she was a Freshman and is currently an intramural supervisor. In her free time, you can find her at the IBC gym attending one of the group fitness classes! She is so excited to be a peer mentor for University Studies so she can share her major exploration story with students who are going through a similar experience.