Meet the Student Members of the Office

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2018 Graduate Assistants

Marty Hernandez is a graduate assistant in the Office of University Life, assisting in programming and event planning. He is currently pursuing his masters in higher and post-secondary education at Teachers College. Before coming to Columbia, Marty studied psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles and minored in civic engagement. He plans to apply to Ph.D. programs next fall and aspires to be an expert on military students in higher education. Marty is also a proud military veteran who served in the United States Marine Corps, and is currently in the United States Air Force Reserves. He is dedicated to supporting military veterans succeed in their transition into higher education. 

Brianna Kirk is a graduate assistant in the Office of University Life. Kirk has a passion for programming, access and equity in higher education and is working to find a way to decrease homelessness and hunger on college campuses, and improve access to higher education for homeless youth. 
She is a second-year master’s student at NYU where she is studying higher education and student affairs. Kirk is from Connecticut, enjoys traveling, and finding new bakeries.


Aayushi Mishra is a graduate assistant in the Office of University Life and is studying environmental science and policy at the School of International and Public Affairs. She is focusing on all-things wellness at Columbia, and helping to plan events and researching stress-relief. When not reading academic papers and writing about climate change, Aayushi is brushing up on her painting skills. Aayushi has a B.A. in biology and environmental studies from Mount Holyoke College. She has lived on four continents.

2017-18 Fellows

Shyamolie Biyani is a Columbia College senior majoring in Psychology and Business Management. She is interested in learning how people think, interact and live in communities, and is working with Columbia Libraries to transform library space to reduce stress and be a friendlier environment. As a University Life Fellow, Shyamolie wants to help make Columbia feel like home for everybody, particularly students who are international, isolated or lonely. Shyamolie wants to eventually be involved in education in developing countries and creating equal access to education for girls and women. 
Shyamolie is from Mumbai, India. She enjoys cooking, watching a lot of TV, and singing badly at parties.

Nathan Lam is a Columbia College sophomore with interest in human rights and public health policy. He has become a University Life Fellow with the goal of positively shaping campus culture and helping the community of students, faculty, and staff at Columbia. Nathan’s dream career is to be in a position to effect meaningful change for underserved and underrepresented populations, possibly as Surgeon-General or Director of World Health Organization. For now, he is most intent on staying open to intellectual and personal experiences. 
Nathan is from San Marino, California and, as an avid backpacker, has trekked in over 30 national parks and the Sierra Mountains.

Courtnii Lamar is a Columbia Law School first year student whose aim is to be a positive example for disadvantaged students both inside and outside of the classroom. Previously, she was a Teach for America Corps Member in Washington D.C. educating first graders. Courtnii will also be a continuing Summer Associate at the global firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP through Sponsors for Educational Opportunity (SEO), a program that offers incoming law students of color an internship with a top law firm. She believes good representation is not only about reversing harmful stereotypes, but also about ensuring diverse narratives, celebrating cultures, and sharing stories.
Courtnii is from Portland, Oregon and graduated magna cum laude from Howard University with a B.A. in History and a concentration in the African Diaspora. 


Christine Tran is a graduate student at the School of Social Work studying advanced clinical practice, health, mental health and disabilities. She is also the president of the Students Against Sexual Violence (SAS-V) Caucus helping to spread awareness and advocate for victims of domestic abuse and sexual assault. Christine’s dream would be to work in college counseling as a licensed clinical social worker. She is excited to join the Office of University Life as a Fellow to enhance the well being and experiences of Columbia students. 
A Bay Area, California native, Christine completed the Central Park Half Marathon 2017 and in her free time likes to eat her way through New York and burn it off with kickboxing.