No one shares the UF Online student experience better than our students. UF Online Student Ambassadors are charged with ensuring every student feels welcomed, supported, and connected to Gator Nation.
The 2020-2021 Ambassador cohort has a combined experience of over 10 years of virtual learning and were chosen because of their passion to build a community for their fellow #GatorsOnline. During their term, ambassadors provide advice and tips, host virtual meet-ups, and ultimately serve as a liaison between UF Online staff and the student body. Current UF Online students can connect with the ambassadors in the Plaza to join them for game nights, or chat with them during virtual meet-ups. You can also keep up them with them on Instagram @ufonlinesa!
Meet the 2020-2021 UF Online Ambassadors:
Major: Senior, Bachelor in Telecommunications
Hobbies: Acting, Singing, Exercising, Photogrpahy, Dancing
Favorite Quote: “Though she be but little, she is fierce!
– William Shakespeare
Short Bio: I am a fourth-year Telecommunications New Major with a minor in Theatre. I was raised in Gainesville and have been a Gator my whole life. I was in PaCE for the first two years of college. I love to workout and travel. My favorite food is plain instant oatmeal!
Major: Sophomore, Bachelor in Sustainability and the Built Environment
Hobbies: Hiking, Being Outside, Playing the Piano, Dancing, Camping
Favorite Quote: “The first step toward success is taken when you refuse to be a captive of the environment in which you first find yourself.” – Mark Caine
Short Bio: I am originally from West Palm Beach, FL however I’m currently living in Gainesville. My whole family is originally from Colombia so when my parents immigrated to the USA they still incorporated their culture into the way they raised my twin brother and I. I enjoy being outside in nature whether that be at the beach, at a park, hiking, etc. Lastly, I am definitely a sweet tooth and I will ALWAYS choose having desert over regular meal 🙂
Major: Junior, Bachelor in Communication Sciences & Disorders
Hobbies: Reading, Movies, Painting, Soap Making
Favorite Quote: “Why fit in when you were born to stand out?”
– Dr. Seuss
Short Bio: Hey there! My name is Elani and I am from sunny Naples, FL. I am a junior majoring in Communication Sciences and Disorders with the goal of being a Speech and Language Pathologist. I am the oldest of 5 siblings, I love to read, and I love life! My favorite food is my mom’s mashed potatoes and mushroom gravy! Can you tell that that Thanksgiving and Christmas are my favorite holidays? I am so proud to call myself a Gator and I look forward to meeting you all! Have a wonderful semester!
Major: Sophomore, Bachelor in Advertising
Hobbies: Editing Videos, Scrapbooking, Cooking
Favorite Quote: “Believe in yourself and there will come a day when others will have no choice but to believe with you.” – The Lion King
Short Bio: I am from a small town in south-west Florida called Punta Gorda but I was born in Massachusetts! Unfortunately I’m allergic to most traditional pets so the only pet I have is my pet Gator. Gator is a beta fish that my roommates and I share and she’s really cool. My favorite foods are anything Italian, especially when I get to cook it with my friends and family. My favorite pastime is watching YouTube videos, I’m a huge fan of daily vlogs in particular! After I graduate I am hoping to move to NYC or Boston!
Major: Senior, Bachelor in Public Relations
Hobbies: Dancing, Cooking, Fund Raising
Favorite Quote: “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”
– Wayne Gretzky
Short Bio: I am a senior majoring in public relations. In the Fall of 2020, I started the combined degree program to pursue a master’s degree in mass communication specialized in digital strategy. I live in Orlando, Florida and am a full-time performer for the Walt Disney World Company. I have been molded into the person I am today through my experiences. In 2018, I was elected chapter president of Phi Theta Kappa, a prestigious international honor society where I organized multiple events. One event that gained a spot in my heart was a college-wide activity called Valencia Sleep Out for Homeless Youth, to raise funds and awareness for homeless youth. From brainstorming ideas to the event to the final debrief meeting, I learned the true value of collaboration, time-management, leadership, and most importantly, communication. Looking forward, I would like to continue to surround myself in an environment full of dreamers and doers, just like Walt Disney.
Major: Junior, Bachelor in Tourism, Event & Recreation Management
Hobbies: Scuba Diving, Traveling, Finding new Foodie Spots, Spend time with Family/Dogs, Social Media Marketing, Watching Reality TV, Dabbling in Video Games
Favorite Quote: “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
Short Bio: My name is Kenn Wade and I live in Orlando, FL but I grew up just down the street from UF on a horse farm in Ocala, FL. I have worked for the Walt Disney Company for over five years in the restaurant business and I love what I do. From traveling around the world to going deep sea scuba diving, it’s clear I have a deep wanderlust and passion for exploring the world and experiencing new cultures and foods. I am a huge sucker for any kind of dog so if you have any adorable pooch pictures, you can send them my way! At home, you can also find me binge watching my favorite reality tv competition shows, playing the latest video games, getting a workout in, or at the piano bench composing!
Major: Senior, Bachelor in Business Administration
Hobbies: Playing Golf, Watching Sports, Trying New Recipes, Spending time with Dogs, Home Improvement
Favorite Quote: “You can design and create, and build the most wonderful place in the world. But it takes people to make the dream a reality.” – Walt Disney
Short Bio: I am originally from Farmingdale New York, but moved to Central Florida in 2000. I currently reside in Windermere Florida. I have 2 dogs, Marney (beagle mix) and Molly (chi mix). I am an only child from a single mother. My mom retired in 2006 and moved here to live with me. Although you can take the girl out of NY, you can’t take the NY out of the girl. I’m still an avid NY Yankees fan and try to catch most games on tv. My favorite food is by far Mexican -- tacos, nachos, fajitas, yum! In the early 1990’s I almost completed my AA degree, but left school 4 classes shy to enter the workforce. I ended up completing that AA almost 30 years later in 2018 and am now pursuing a BS in Business Administration. I am a senior with 8 classes left to complete. I work full time for the Walt Disney Company as well as taking one to two classes per semester. My goal is to complete my degree by mid to late 2022.
Major: Sophomore, Bachelor in Public Relations
Hobbies: Photography, Writing, Volunteering
Favorite Quote: “To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson
Short Bio: My name is Melanie Jakubowicz and I am a sophomore PR major from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. My dad is from Cuba and my mom is from Miami Beach. I have an older brother who currently works on the Strategic Alliances team for Facebook in the Bay Area of California. My favorite types of food are Mexican and Cuban. I also enjoy spending time working with my old high school’s Speech and Debate team in helping students prepare for upcoming tournaments.
Major: Senior, Bachelor in International Studies & English Literature
Hobbies: Watching Cartoons, Watching Horror Movies, Drinking Boba Tea
Favorite Quote: “Sometimes, life is scary and dark. That is why we must find the light” – BMO, Adventure Time
Short Bio: Hello! My name is Tiffany Silva and I am a first generation Brazilian-American student. In my free time I love watching horror movies and drinking boba tea. I grew up in Salem, Massachusetts but went to high school in south Florida. I have spent a majority of my undergrad experience online, sometimes in different time zones!
Major: Junior, Bachelor in Public Relations
Hobbies: Reading, Writing, Dancing, Learning to Cook, Yoga, Drinking Coffee/Tea
Favorite Quote: “Just do the next right thing.” – Anna, Frozen 2
Short Bio: Hi! My name is Victoria, but I usually go by Tori so as to avoid being too formal. I am from Ocala, Florida, and I transitioned to UF Online for my last year of college so I could move to Italy to be with my husband who is stationed at an Air Force base there. In my free time, I like to read period pieces; drink tea and coffee; think about decorating our first apartment and dancing/ doing yoga. This semester, in addition to my classes, I am the social media intern for the UF international center, and I am learning Italian for my upcoming move.