Madison Bondoc
Graduate Assistant, Pre-Professionals Programs / OADI Honors

Madison has earned her B.S. in Chemical Engineering at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). During her undergraduate years, she was an involved E-board member in several STEM organizations, including the Society of Women Engineers, and Engineers Without Borders. Recently, she worked full-time as a fermentation research assistant in a healthcare company in Maryland. Madison is currently studying for her M.Eng. in Biomedical Engineering at Cornell. She hopes to make a difference in improving human life through novel engineering solutions in the development of biomedical devices, artificial organs, or prosthetics. In her spare time, she draws, paints, plays piano, and dances for a hip-hop dance team on campus. 

Nicholas “Nic” Cappon
Graduate Assistant, Community Development and Social Justice Programs

Nic Cappon is a second-year graduate student studying Public Administration. As a Graduate Program Assistant for Community Development & Social Justice, Nic works with First in Class Mobilizers on study abroad initiatives, experiential learning as well as advocacy and mentorship. Prior to his studies at Cornell, Nic served as an aide to New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, specializing on operations and intergovernmental affairs. He is a proud first generation student and graduate of SUNY Plattsburgh’s Educational Opportunity Program (EOP), where he holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science.

Mengjia Chen
Graduate Assistant, Student Funding / DSE

Graduated with a B.S degree in International Economics from the University of International Relations in China, Mengjia is now pursuing her master degree at Cornell Institute for Public Affairs (CIPA). She takes the concentration of economics and financial policy analysis in CIPA. As an international student, she understands how tough it can be to pick up a second language, and overcome the cultural shocks, and is committed to helping OADI and the students it serves.

She believes one should remember and appreciate the sunshine even if it is dark at the present.


Ayesha Khan
Graduate Assistant, Compendium & Database

Ayesha is an Electronic Engineer who has a 3-years work experience in an Oil and Gas Industry. Her work experience includes a field training where she was the first female engineer on a gas field in her organization in Pakistan. As a pioneer of this ‘women in technology project’, she knows what it’s like to take up challenges and being an extreme minority at a workplace.

She is currently earning an MPA focused on Environmental Impact Assessment from Cornell University.

From her time at the gas field, she understands the importance of encouragement, effective communication and a sense of inclusion for a student’s progress; especially when they are underrepresented.

Emily Martin
Graduate Assistant, Community Development and Social Justice Programs

Emily Martin is an alumna of Ithaca College where she graduated with a B.A. in Sociology with a minor in Communication, Management and Design. She is currently earning an MPA in Public Administration from Cornell University. She has a passion for analyzing the factors that contribute to socio-economic inequality and working to eradicate them.

Anlly Palacios
Graduate Assistant, OADI Research Scholars

Anlly is currently in the Masters in Public Administration program, hoping to concentrate in Public and NGO Management. She attended Binghamton University and received her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology, with a minor in Spanish. Anlly is also a McNair Scholar alumna. She is from Queens, New York and she is passionate about social change and hopes to make a difference in the world through public service. Anlly likes to go to the movies during her time off. 

Jaynel Santos
Graduate Assistant, McNair Scholars

Graduated with a B.S in Environmental Science from UCLA and a current Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV) from Senegal, West Africa, Jaynel decided to pursue a dual Master’s degree in City and Regional Planning and Landscape Architecture. With a focus in environmental planning and international development, she hopes to give back to her ancestral countries in Honduras and the Philippines doing work in water resource management and natural disaster risk management.

Having been raised by extended family she has found the importance to endeavor to persevere and the true meaning of delayed gratification. “Believe in yourself even when no one else does. If someone tells you that you can’t do it, prove them wrong.” Anonymous

Blaire Sorenson
Graduate Assistant, Community Development and Social Justice Programs

Blaire holds Bachelor’s degrees in Chemistry and Applied Mathematics. Her undergraduate research focused on renewable energy applications, specifically solar cells. Blaire is currently a Master's student in Chemical and Biological Engineering at Cornell and she conducts research in the Clancy Group, where Blaire models perovskite solar cells using the Cornell Supercomputers.

Sharanya Subramony
Graduate Assistant, EOP/HEOP Tutoring

Sharanya graduated with a B.S in Chemical Engineering from Drexel University with minors in Mathematics and Criminal Justice. She is currently a Master’s student in Chemical and Biological Engineering at Cornell, working in the Koch group on experiments related to hydrodynamic separations of micron and sub-micron particles.

Having teachers in her family has taught her that everyone should have as many resources as they can to help them succeed in their education. She hopes that through OADI’s tutoring services, students will be able to get the additional support they need in order to succeed in their courses.

“Look for something positive in each day, even if some days you have to look harder.” Anonymous 

Xiao Tan
Graduate Assistant, Student Funding / DSE

Xiao is currently a graduate M.P.A. student at Cornell University, with a concentration in Economics and Financial Policy. She recently graduated from Emory University with a dual degree in Art History and Economics. The analytical skills she gained from studying Economics, and the communication skills embodied in the process of studying Art History have intertwined and inspired her to study and analyze the economic situations of different cultures and sectors. She conducted an honor research on Native American cultures, especially the Hopi and Navajo tribes. Between 2012 to 2014, she also published 5 pieces of fiction. 

Sanan Isaba Zaman
Graduate Assistant, McNair Scholars Program

Sanan is a first year fellow at the Cornell Institute of Public Affairs. She recently graduated from Boston University this past spring with a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations. She hopes to work in the UN or a similar international organization to pursue her passion for world peace. She loves traveling and trying different cuisines.