The Luminaries are the official student ambassadors for the UF Honors Program and assist Honors leadership with info sessions and outreach. If you're a prospective student, feel free to reach out to a Luminary with your question(s).

Meet the Luminaries by college:


Theresa LaNasa,

  • Major: Business Administration
  • Minor: General Theatre
  • Involvement: Freshman Leadership Council, Honor Chords, Catholic Gators, Sailing Club

Erik Ruszkowski,

  • Major: Finance
  • Involvement: Undergraduate Consulting Club, Student Investment Club, Association of Latino Professionals for America, Florida Ski & Snowboard Club, Fellow for the Hamilton Center of Classical and Civic Education; Honors Athletics 

James Walter,

  • Major: Accounting
  • Minor: Sustainability Studies
  • Involvement: Florida Students of Accounting Council, Florida Leadership Academy, Florida Running Club, Honors Athletics

Claire Wong, 

  • Major: Information Systems and Operations Management
  • Minor: Economics
  • Involvement: Undergraduate Consulting Club, Special Olympics, Sigma Kappa, Teaching Assistant

Design, Construction, and Planning

Hana Checketts,

  • Major: Architecture
  • Minor: Sustainability and the Built Environment
  • Involvement: URSP, MentorGNV Tutor, American Institute of Architecture Students, Honors Gators for Gainesville, Japanese Club

Engineering, Herbert Wertheim College

Camille Grimaldi,

  • Major: Chemical Engineering
  • Minor: Nutritional Sciences
  • Involvement: Freshman Leadership Engineering Group (FLEG), Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE), ChemE Car, Argentine Student Association (ArSA), Undergraduate research

Kaylie Martling,

  • Major: Environmental Engineering
  • Involvement: Society of Women Engineers, Summer Internships: USDA - NRCS (2023) and ExxonMobil (2024), Westside Baptist Church College Ministry, Honors Professional Development for Engineers Peer Mentor, Resident Assistant, Freshmen Leadership Engineering Group (FLEG), URSP

Phoebe Barron,

  • Major: Environmental Engineering
  • Involvement: University College Democrats, Honors Theatre Appreciation

Public Health and Health Professions

Daisy Jones, 

  • Major: Communication Sciences and Disorders
  • Involvement: French Club, Kappa Kappa Gamma, AI in Education research, ELI conversation partner

Caleb Moncrief,

  • Major: Applied Physiology and Kinesiology
  • Involvement: Phi Delta Epsilon Pre-Medical Fraternity, University of Florida Cheerleading

Lucy Pellenbarg, 

  • Major: Public Health
  • Involvement: URSP, iGEM Competition Team, Florida's Future Leadership Program, Medigators, LEAP Pre-professional Society, UF Homecoming and Gator Growl, Chi Omega, Study Abroad (Tanzania)

Casi Ramirez,

  • Major: Applied Physiology and Kinesiology
  • Minor: Geography
  • Involvement: The Salt Company student leader, H-Camp/H-Day SOFA (2022) and Exec (2023), Medigators, Orthopedics and Athletic Medicine Club, Gator Emergency Medical Response Unit (GEMRU), Integrative Cardiovascular Physiology Lab assistant, Fire Rescue EMT

Journalism and Communications

Marinna Stopa,

  • Majors: Journalism and Geography
  • Certificate: Meteorology & Climatology
  • Involvement: Editor-in-Chief of Her Campus UFL, PRISM Honors Magazine, American Meteorological Society, Geography Department Ambassador, WUFT-Weather, National Science Foundation SOARS 2024 Protégé

Liberal Arts and Sciences

Abhi Bommineni,

  • Major: Economics
  • Involvement: Securities Analysis Club, Gator Impact Ventures, Inter-Residence Hall Association, Florida Community Innovation, URSP

Gabriella Berardi,

  • Majors: Psychology (Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience)
  • Minor: Italian Studies
  • Involvement: URSP, Nueroscience Club, Psychology Club, Italian Student Association, Spoon University, Phi Alpha Delta Mock Trial, Study Abroad (Florence)

Miriam Girgis, 

  • Major: Biology (Pre-professional)
  • Minor: Business Administration
  • Involvement: URSP; Dream Team; H-Day; Undergraduate research in pediatric neuro-oncology; CURBS Peer Advisor; Regenegators; First Responder Gator; UF Girls in Engineering, Mathematics, and Science (GEMS)

Peyton Harris,

  • Majors: English and Religion
  • Involvement: The Independent Florida Alligator, Undergraduate research (USP and URSP), Teach for America Ignite Fellowship, Writing Center Tutoring

Michele Hirn, 

  • Major: Data Science
  • Involvement: Black Student Union, Data Science and Informatics Club, Students Taking Action Against Racism (STAAR), Center for African Studies Ambassador

Vanessa Obando,

  • Majors: Political Science and Sociology
  • Minor: African American Studies
  • Involvement: Central American Latin Organization, Junior Research Fellow, Sankofa African American Studies Society

Jacob Roman,

  • Majors: Anthropology, Political Sciences (Pre-Med)
  • Involvement: H-Camp/H-Day SOFA, UF Speech Lab Consultant, Polish Student Association, SHO Exec

Marinna Stopa,

  • Majors: Journalism and Geography
  • Certificate: Meteorology & Climatology
  • Involvement: Editor-in-Chief of Her Campus UFL, PRISM Honors Magazine, American Meteorological Society, Geography Department Ambassador, WUFT-Weather, National Science Foundation SOARS 2024 Protégé

Primrose Tanachaiwiwat, 

  • Major: Microbiology
  • Minors: Entomology, Bioinformatics
  • Involvement: Center for Medical, Agricultural, and Veterinary Entomology; Florida Medical Entomology Lap, PRISM Honors Literary Magazine Creative Section Editor; Thai-Laos Student Association; General Relief in Prosthetics Art Division

Avery Teman,

  • Major: Economics
  • Involvement: URSP, Alpha Kappa Psi Professional Co-ed Business Fraternity, Entrepreneurship Collective, Florida Women in Business, Alpha Chi Omega

Liz Thomason, 

  • Majors: Political Science and French and Francophone Studies
  • Involvement: Hamilton Center Society of Fellows, Preview Staff, U.S. Prix Goncourt Committee Member, Student Legal Services Research Intern, Honors Mindfulness Peer Leader, Child & Youth Intern at Peaceful Paths

CJ Volpe,

  • Major: Biology
  • Minors: Spanish and Chemistry
  • Involvement: UF Center for Undergraduate Research Board of Students, Gator Muscular Dystrophy Association, laboratory assistant, Research Experiences for Undergraduates, UF Mesa de Español

Sam Waterston, 

  • Major: Economics
  • Involvement: Undergraduate research, UF Writing Center tutor, TEA Literary Magazine, Women in Economics

Jake Wooley, 

  • Major: Psychology
  • Minor: Health Disparities in Society
  • Involvement: URSP and advisory board, Preview Staff, UF Shands Health Volunteer, Medigators
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