Graduates wearing caps and gowns with bonner ribons

Bonner Alumni Highlights

Check out the impact the Montclair State University Bonner Leader Program has left on our alumni and their achievements in various civically engaged fields:

Lateisha Exi
MSU Class of 2020

Lateisha recently graduated with her bachelor’s in Public Health. During her time at Montclair, she was an active student on campus and Bonner was the very first program she was involved in.

“To me, to be a Bonner is to stand out above many. Bonner introduced me to a diverse group of amazing students that shared a passion for leading, self reflection, and giving back to countless community groups. Each year, the program continues to grow and it was a pleasure witnessing this for the four years I was with Bonner!” 

Alyson Schwartz
MSU Class of 2016

Alyson graduated with a degree in Political Science, with a double minor in Leadership and Jurisprudence. She is currently in her last year of Law School at Seton Hall University School of Law. While in Bonner, her passion for service was evident as she was always motivated and had a positive attitude towards serving those in need.

“Bonner gave me the confidence to step out of my comfort zone. Bonner taught me that success comes only when you fail multiple times. This gave me the strength to follow my dream and become a lawyer. I am beyond grateful for all the memories and friendships Bonner has given me.”

Abdiel Jimenez
MSU Class of 2018

Abdiel graduated with a B.S in Sustainability Science. He is working as an Environmental Coordinator for a pharmaceutical manufacturing company. While in Bonner, he initiated the Redhawk Food Pantry service site, served as the site lead and was on the Bonner leadership team.

“I’ll never forget my first year in the program. The program taught me the importance of serving your community, through selfless acts, and of volunteering and getting more involved with local officials. There are countless forms in which one can make a difference, and even the smallest acts can make a huge impact for others.” 

Amara Higgins
MSU Class of 2016

Amara graduated with a degree in Finance and Economics. She is currently working for a global luxury goods conglomerate company. While in Bonner, she served at various local elementary schools and was a part of the fundraising committee, raising money for Bonner service trips.

“Bonner is synonymous to hope. No matter what service we’ve done, we always come together and succeed anything because Bonner holds such a strong foundation. That foundation has translated to dedication, passion and perseverance. Because of Bonner, I have hope and I feel that I can achieve anything.”

Angela Strignile
MSU Class of 2013

Angela graduated magna cum laude with a B.A in Broadcasting. She worked at NBC for 4 years and is now working full-time at a corporate communication training company in Montclair, NJ. She participated in multiple service trips and continues to support Bonner at events and fundraisers.

“The experiences and friendships I’ve gained from Bonner have been life changing. I feel so grateful to have been part of a program that has not only impacted my life, but countless others through our community service.” 

Ashley Singewald
MSU Class of 2018

Ashley graduated with her master’s degree and is currently a 4th grade teacher. She loves how much of an impact she has on all of her students as she is able to guide them towards their bright futures, just like the Bonner program did for her. While in Bonner, she attended service trips, retreats and always had a positive and uplifting attitude towards service.

“The Bonner program has positively impacted my life in so many ways! I gained confidence and a sense of direction that helped me become the person that I am today. I learned to never give up on the things that I am passionate about. Bonner was a huge support system during my undergraduate years throughout the highs and lows of college. Without the Bonner program, I would not have seen as much growth in myself and I am fortunate enough to have experienced moments that I can cherish forever.”

Carolina Focella
MSU Class of 2016

Carolina received her bachelor’s degree from MSU, and she recently graduated from Rutgers University with her Master’s in Public Health and Social Behavioral and Environmental Health Sciences. While in Bonner she served on the leadership team, was involved in Greek life and had a positive influence on our campus community.

“Bonner has allowed me to grow and develop my skills as a leader based on a foundation of service grounded in social justice. Bonner gave me unforgettable experiences that shaped me into the passionate woman I am today. If I had the chance, I’d do it over again.”

Debora Cubias
MSU Class of 2015

Debora is currently working towards finishing her master’s degree in Educational Leadership, with a concentration in Higher Education. She works as an academic advisor and graduate assistant on campus. While in Bonner, she served in SPOTS and in Orange Community Schools and she attended a service trip to help those devastated by hurricane Sandy.

“Bonner inspired me to make a positive difference in the lives of others and ultimately guided my career path in student affairs. I learned the importance of giving back and met amazing people along the way.”

Fiorella Vecco
MSU Class of 2019

Fiorella graduated with a degree in Mathematics and a K-6 Teaching Certification. She is currently working as a full-time teacher in Newark, NJ. While in Bonner she served on our leadership team and was always willing to go above and beyond to help others.

“Bonner has impacted my self-confidence and my ability to work hard for what I’m passionate about. After going through the Bonner program and graduating college, it definitely made me realize how much I love service and the ability to give back to others. I’m happy that I chose a career path that I am able to do so.”

Adriana Pasquale
MSU Class of 2020

Adriana Pasquale is a recent graduate from Montclair State University, with a degree in Family Science and Human Development with a minor in Psychology and Leadership through Civic Engagement. As a former member of the Bonner Leader Program she is continuing her passion for serving the community.

“The Bonner Program transformed my college experience, allowing me to grow both personally and professionally. Bonner has given me the opportunity to view the world from diverse perspectives through service and leadership development. Bonner gave me lasting memories and molded me into the person I am today. I am forever thankful for my experience in this program!”

Kristy Cruz
MSU Class of 2018

Kristy is currently working at a Pre-School in Jersey City, NJ. She focuses on registering students, checking up on their progress and keeping in close contact with families. She has plans to go back to school to further her education. While in Bonner, she was always positive, caring and had immense enthusiasm towards service.

“Being a part of Bonner helped me significantly. Since I became a Bonner, I knew I wanted to be in a career where I get to help others. I cherish the moments I had as a Bonner and my goal is to continue helping and impacting my community. If I can do it all over again, I would without a doubt.  I thank everyone in the Bonner Leadership Program for their continuous dedication to helping others.” 

Ivan Lopez
MSU Class of 2016

Ivan graduated from MSU with his master’s in counseling. He currently works at Rutgers University as a counselor. While in Bonner, he was dedicated to participating in service, and he was also involved with EOF and with student life.

“Bonner allowed me to develop strong leadership and communication skills, which later helped me in my career. The program gave me awareness of multiple disparities and social justice issues in my surrounding communities. I can honestly say, joining the Bonner program was one of the best decisions I did as an undergrad.”

Ally Coughlin
MSU Class of 2019

Ally graduated with a degree in Sociology and a minor in Economics. Currently, she is working with an advancing medical technology company that distributes to U.S. facilities. While in Bonner, she served on the leadership team as a Congress Representative and participated in multiple spring break service trips.

“Bonner paved the way for me towards career advancement by providing leadership positions in community development projects.”

Julia Zahriyeh
MSU Class of 2018

Julia graduated with a degree in Public Health and is currently continuing her education to become a pharmacist. While in Bonner, she completed service at several local elementary schools and after-school programs.

“I will forever be grateful to be part of a program that has impacted my life. Bonner has guided me throughout my years at MSU and my current path. It taught me the importance of giving back to others. Also, I made lifelong friendships.”

Juan Andres
MSU Class of 2016

Juan is currently a high school English teacher at Memorial High School in West New York, NJ. He is finishing his master’s degree in English Education at the Teacher’s College of Columbia University. While in Bonner, he completed his service at local elementary schools, and he was a member of the leadership team.

“Bonner helped me recognize that I love working with kids. I completed my service in the Orange Community Schools, as a program assistant and teaching FEC. It later led to my first job out of college at Orange High School.”

Laura Hickey
MSU Class of 2019

Laura graduated with a degree in Anthropology. She is currently working in the education department at the New York Aquarium. While in Bonner, she served on the leadership team as a Congress Representative and attended multiple spring and summer break service trips.

“Bonner inspired me to put myself outside of my comfort zone and to engage with the community.”

Linda Ly
MSU Class of 2014

Linda is currently working as an account manager at a logistics company as well as working part time at a gym. While in Bonner, she completed service at local elementary schools and attended spring break service trips.

“Bonner has impacted me in many ways, one of which is not being afraid to take risks and to always give the gift of inspiration. Bonner helped me grow out of my comfort zone and to help others do the same.”

Marie Vizzotti
MSU Class of 2017

Marie graduated with a degree in Family and Child Studies. While in Bonner, she was always ready to take initiative, bring new ideas to the table and make others feel welcomed. She also served on the leadership team and spent a summer working at the YMCA Blue Ridge Assembly in North Carolina.

“Being a Bonner Leader didn’t just positively impact my college experience, it changed my entire life. It opened my mind to new ideas and continuously pushed me out of my comfort zone. I gained excellent leadership skills, experienced inspiring service opportunities and formed relationships with some of the most amazing people. I will forever be grateful for the experience I had with the Bonner Leaders.”

Linda Salazar 
MSU Class of 2017

Linda is currently working as the Program Assistant for the Department of Nutrition and Food Studies on campus. She is currently applying to complete her master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at MSU. While in Bonner, she served as the Discover 101 lead where she found her passion in working with students with disabilities.

“Bonner impacted my life from the moment I walked into my first orientation. I learned countless lessons, but the most impactful was to persevere and remain dedicated in the things you are passionate about. Even when it got tough, I learned to keep going for the end result. Seeing faces light up from serving is truly priceless and left a lasting impression on me. The passion I found for service will always make a difference in my life and I will always remember to stay dedicated in everything I do.”

Myla Ramirez
MSU Class of 2014

Myla completed her MPH in Environmental Health Policy at Columbia University in 2017. She currently works as a government scientist to develop sound policies to address environmental pollution issues. While in Bonner, she served on the leadership team and was committed to growing the Swipes to Save a Life program.

“Bonner helped me explore and learn about ways to apply my science degree to address greater social and environmental justice issues. My time with Bonner was some of the fondest times of my undergraduate career.”  

Mylinh Huynh
MSU Class of 2019

Mylinh graduated with a degree in Marketing and Hospitality Management. She later accepted a job offer as a marketing manager at Paragon Group USA. While in Bonner, she served on the leadership team as the fundraising chair for two years and attended the spring break service trip four years in a row.

“Bonner shaped me into the leader I am today. I have learned to strive to be the best version of myself through Bonner. It was a place of learning and growth for me.”

Robert Clark
MSU Class of 2017

Robert is currently working for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection in the Bureau of Solid Waste Compliance and Enforcement. While in Bonner, he served on the leadership team as the site lead for Side Door.

“Bonner has helped sharpen my leadership skills which I’ve been able to utilize in my current career path. I have learned so many lessons which help to this day.”

Megan Breitenbach
MSU Class of 2018

Megan graduated with her MAT, being dual certified to teach English as well as students with disabilities, grades K-12. She is currently teaching 8th grade Language Arts in inclusion classes at Orange Preparatory Academy. While in Bonner, she served on the leadership team, was site lead for Discovery 101 and the campus’ first BAB member.

“Bonner inspired me to pursue a career in teaching through my experiences in the ELLC program and volunteering with Discovery 101. Bonner helped me to become a civically engaged citizen and inspired me to educate others. Without Bonner I never would have had the hands-on experience to volunteer in my community, get to know the individuals I serve on a personal level, and develop the skills one needs to best serve others.”  

Portia Calo
MSU Class of 2019

Portia graduated with a degree in Nutrition and Food Science. Currently, she is the Assistant Manager at a yoga studio in NYC, where she also teaches yoga. While in Bonner, she served on the leadership team as member support and was the lead service coordinator for the campus food pantry.

“Bonner helped me find my passion by allowing me to incorporate my major into my weekly service site, our on-campus food pantry. It gave me a great support system and people I can always count on, as well as a family. I know there are always people cheering for me and making sure I succeed and that is the greatest feeling.”

Simon Madolid
MSU Class of 2017

Simon is currently an Accounts Payable Associate at WeWork. While in Bonner, he served on the leadership team as a Congress Representative and he went on multiple service trips. He completed his service at Side Door and he also gained an internship with the Appalachia Service Project in Tennessee through Bonner.

“Being a Bonner paved the way for becoming the person I am today. From traveling to new destinations, pursuing not only a career, but simultaneously helping those in need. Bonner taught me to expand my horizons and to go only for the dreams I desire most.”

Garrick Beauliere
MSU Class of 2016

Garrick Beauliere is a third-year clinical psychology doctoral student. Currently, he is an extern at St. Elizabeths Hospital (SEH), the first federally funded inpatient psychiatric hospital in the country. He also was an extern at the Superior Court of the District of Columbia – Child Guidance Clinic and he was recently offered a position at the Washington DC Veteran Affairs Medical Center. Garrick has been heavily associated with the Association of Black Psychologists (ABPsi). He is currently a part of the 2019-2020 National Student Circle Board of Directors as the Membership Chair.

In his doctoral program, he was the cohort representative for Director of Clinical Training (DCT) Search Committee in 2018, Faculty Professor Search Committee in 2019, and the current cohort representative for the Community Enhancement and Outreach Committee. Due to his work and participation in ABPsi, he was awarded the Academic Development Award by the Association of Black Psychologist Student Circle in 2019.

“Bonner made service fun. It gave me opportunities to give back to underserved areas while inspiring others to do the same. I was privileged to be able to give back and seeing the countless faces of gratitude was priceless. I impacted lives and that made my experience unforgettable. Bonner gave me the skills and tools to develop community service initiatives for my fraternity and service-based organization at graduate school.”