Loyola University Chicago

Achieving College Excellence

Student Academic Services

Meet the ACE Mentors


Peer mentors host a week-long Summer Transition Program for incoming first-year students the week before fall classes begin.  The Summer Transition Program include a series of team-building activities, academic enrichment sessions, and a community service project.

Once the semester begins, peer mentors will assist a small group of ACE Scholars in acclimating to the college environment.  Peer mentors maintain regular contact with each ACE scholar in their small group and design programming to tailor to the needs of first-year students.  Additonally, one-one-one mentoring will take place between peer mentors and new students throughout the academic year.

Below is a brief introduction to our team of peer mentors.  If you are an ACE student with questions about this service, please e-mail us at ace@luc.edu.

Peer Mentors:

Efrata Sasahulih, Lead Peer Mentor

Hometown: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Major: Bachelor of Science in Psychology, Bachelor of Arts in African Studies, Master of Arts in Applied Social Psychology

Involvement: Behavioral Research on Acceptance and Diversity (BROAD) Lab, Provost Fellowship, Maroon & Gold Society

Favorite aspect of ACE: My favorite aspect of ACE is the community. I have met some of my closest friends through ACE and I don't know what I would do without them.

Ruqiya Abdulle, Lead Peer Mentor

Hometown: Mogadishu, Somalia

Major: Environmental Policy and Political Science

Favorite Aspect of ACE: The flexibility and understanding of both the students, mentors, and staff. It truly feels like a family supporting one another to succeed.


Gregory Frijia, Social Media Coordinator

Hometown: Milwaukee, WI

Major: Creative Writing and Philosophy

Involvement: Delta Sigma Phi Fraternity, Alpha Sigma Nu: National Jesuit Honor Society, English Honors Program

Favorite aspect of ACE: Whether in-person or virtual, ACE is a community that has your back. You're never short a friend in your corner or resource to succeed, because ACE is always there for you. 


Malessa McKillip, Marketing Coordinator

Hometown: Rockford, Illinois

Major: Marketing and Management

Involvement: Loyola Women's Club Volleyball Team, Polish Student Alliance

Favorite Aspect of ACE: My favorite part of ACE is the family atmosphere and the comfort of knowing that ACE is always there to support and encourage me through my academic, career, spiritual, and personal growth.

Yatzany Resendiz-Rivera

Hometown: Plainfield, IL

Major: Biology and Spanish 

Minor: Bioethics

Involvement: ACE Medical Club, ACE Peer Mentor, ACE Peer Tutor, Welcome Week Leader, AMSA, Alpha Phi Omega, UChicago Comer Baby Cuddler

Favorite Aspect about ACE: ACE is built on empowering and providing the support that each scholar needs to achieve their dreams.

Cade Turro

Hometown: Kankakee, IL

Major: Finance

Involvement: Club Sports, Sports Management Club, Finance Honors program

Favorite Aspect of ACE: The sense of family between members.


Ty List

Hometown: Columbus, Ohio

Major: Environmental Science

Minors: Political Science and Biostatistics

Involvement: Club Swim Team

Favorite Aspect of ACE: Having such a close community around you to support you and always feeling like you can walk into the ACE lounge and have a family around you even though you are away from home.


Japani Doan

Hometown: Hoffman Estates, IL

Major: Bioinformatics

Involvement: VSA (Vietnamese Student Association), APO (Alpha Phi Omega), Clay Club 

Favorite aspect of ACE: The close-knit community that feels like a second home.


Emilie Amadi

Hometown: Evanston, IL

Major: Biology (Pre-med)

Involvement: The National Society of Collegiate Scholars (NSCS), ACE Medical Club, American Medical Student Association (AMSA), New Life Volunteering Society (NLVS)

Favorite aspect of ACE: The helpful and supportive advisors.


Cindy Villagrán López 

Hometown: Cicero, IL

Major: Pre-Law, Psychology 

Minor: Philosophy

Favorite Aspect of ACE: The support and resources it offers students for their academic and professional success.