New Student Orientation is led by Gwen Schimek, Assistant Dean of Students/Director of Student Life.

Along with four Orientation Leaders -- Nikki Ahline, Jarod Armenta, Katlyn Arndt, and Eleanor Cotton, they work with 28 peer advocates, who lead incoming students through New Student Orientation during the week prior to classes starting.  As new students work individually and in groups with a PA, this is the individual with whom students will have the most contact beginning in August and until the academic year begins. 

What is a PA?

The NSO team is composed of 28 Peer Advocates (PAs), four Orientation Leaders, and several professional staff members from the Student Life staff.

The PAs help you by facilitating your small group, getting to know you, helping you meet other new students, and showing you how to get involved on campus. Their primary goal is to help you make a successful transition to Cornell. Your peer group will meet several times each day during NSO. Your PA will continue to plan activities for you throughout the first three blocks to make sure that you are connected to services, resources, and friends.

Meet the 2014 NSO Team

The PAs

Emily Andrulis

Rachel Foster

Tiffany Lawless

Nolan Schillerstrom

Leah Bossom

Joelle Holtman

Nick Mann

Nathan Spalding

Kenny Capesius

Molly Johnson

Rocky Mazorow

Tyler Vandergaast

Kang Chen

Yolanda Jones

Justin Pruitt

Janessa Weightman

Tegan Crombie

Kyra Koehler

David Quintana

Mary Willis

Kyle Decker

Aubrey Kohl

Caryn Schebowich

Jordan Wolfe

Miranda Donnellan

Bekah Kurtz

Dakota Schee

Audrey Zannini

How does a student become a Peer Advocate?

PA candidates go through a highly selective interview process during the spring semester. Ideal PAs have a positive attitude, are dependable, communicate effectively, and work well with a team. Your PAs are the best Cornell has to offer. They are personable and responsible community members.  Learn more about the PA process here