Meet the 2017-2018 Academic Coaching Mentors

Ash McNamee

I have the privilege of being an Academic Coaching Mentor this year. I'm a 2nd year student double-majoring in Political Science & Criminology with aspirations for law school or teaching. Additionally, I love to play and watch hockey and enjoy spending my time with my family fishing, swimming, and canoeing during the summer. 

Growing up I faced many difficulties in my academic endeavours throughout elementary and middle school. However, in my grade 8 year I was blessed with the opportunity of having a teacher who went above and beyond her teaching requirements in helping me find success. With her help I was able to believe that I could actually achieve success and found myself excelling in areas I never felt possible. 

Being your Academic Coaching Mentor I hope to pay forward my good fortune of academic success and help you navigate your university experience.  I have no doubt that my path to success will be very different from your own. I look forward to being a helping hand along your own unique academic pursuit!

Elize Khan

My name is Elize and I am one of your mentors for this year! I am studying criminology, law and society, as well as political science here at UTM. Having just completed my first year of university, I understand the importance of having a mentor during university. A mentor truly makes a positive impact in one’s life because one is able to learn so many valuable skills from someone else’s experiences. To me, mentoring is about giving the mentee an opportunity to try and figure things out on their own, and the mentor is always there as a support system. A mentor is someone an individual can come to when they want to talk about their successes or their failures, or if they just need help. I hope that I can be there for you and ensure that you have a fabulous year here at UTM!

Michael Kim

My name is Michael, I am from Calgary and I am a third year student pursuing a double major in commerce and philosophy. As someone who switched programs several times, lived on residence and loves to get involved on campus, I believe I have a lot of experiences to share. I had a lot of mentors guide me during my three years, which really helped me find my way. My goal is to be able to do the same thing and guide you so you can accomplish your goals!

Misha Ali

My name is Misha and I'm in second year of Computer Science & Statistics. Mentorship programs like the ACP have helped me open my mind to the way in which I view and value different kinds of relationships. They also inspired me to look closely at my learning style and natural intelligence and build on my strengths and successes. Being a part of this program has made me value my peers, their experiences, and their goals.  I have met so many creative individuals that have put perspective on what it truly means to be unique. In university, it’s easy to think that you are just like everyone else, but you realize that each person is on their own journey, and each has their own story to tell. Programs such as the ACP have made me realize that solutions to the world’s problems are tangible and to believe that, collectively, we possess the capacity - and relish the opportunity - to make differences in our communities, in ourselves, and in the world. It all starts with being a good neighbor, a supportive peer, a good friend, and a compassionate colleague.

Nour Hanafi

My name is Nour, and I am a 3rd year student, doing a specialist in Molecular Biology, and a minor in Chemistry. When I’m not doing textbook readings, lab prep, or writing papers (which is most of the time!) I love to read a good fantasy book, visit the movie theatre, or watch some sports.

I think that most people come into university - and many graduate - with the spectre of the cGPA always lurking over them, and I believe that that makes one’s university experience less likely to be enjoyable and enriching. If you’re stressed with academics all the time, after all, you’re less likely to be involved outside of class, or engage in social activities, and that does take a toll. I’ve been there, done that. As an academic coaching mentor, I want to help people avoid seeing good grades as one almost insurmountable hurdle, but rather as a series of smaller tasks, which with good study skills, one can easily navigate, and gradually achieve that lofty goal of a great cGPA.

I also believe that academic coaching is a two-way stream: as a mentor, I also get to learn from other people’s experiences, learn new ways of approaching problems, and seeing the world, which is invaluable. It is a pleasure to be here, and I hope that I can help people to whom academics and university life may seem overwhelming, not only as a mentor, but also as a friend.

Sara Ahmed

I am working towards my Biology major, Education Studies minor, and a minor in Chemistry at UTM. Aside from academics, I enjoy trying new recipes, listening to music, travelling, and creating art pieces during her free-time. I joined the Office of Student Transition this year as an Academic Coaching Mentor to help students create and reach their academic goals this school year! To me, mentoring is a collaborative effort made by the mentor and mentee to make a positive impact on the mentee by helping them realize their potential and in doing so, help them achieve their goals.