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Meet Your UC Merced Student Staff

UC Merced Student Tour Guides

Connect with a student tour guide to learn more about UC Merced!


Student Tour Guide Leadership Team


Jefferson Duong

He / Him / His

jefferson duong

Hometown: Torrance, CA 

High school: North Torrance High School 

Major: Management and Business Economics

Hey Everyone! My name is Jefferson Duong, and I am a 3rd-year management and business economics major from Torrance California. I love to play sports but at the end of the day, nothing beats just hanging out with my friends. On campus I am the treasurer of the Vietnamese Student Association so make sure you come and say hi! Overall, I chose UC Merced because of its amazing and inclusive community, and the opportunities that are given to those of us who attend. I hope to see y'all soon :)






Raul Ramirez

He / Him / His

raul ramirez

Hometown: Oakland, CA

High school / Community College:  San Lorenzo High School / Merced Community College 

Major: Mechanical Engineering 

Hello! My name is Raul Ramirez, I’m a second-year Mechanical Engineer transfer student from Merced College. Although I attended the college of Merced, I was born and raised in Oakland, CA. I enjoy playing soccer and basketball, so if any of y’all see me in the court or field, feel welcome to stop by and get a match going. I chose UC Merced because of the knitted community, the opportunities it has to offer, and the astounding growth the University has achieved. My plans after graduation are to get involved with research groups to expand my knowledge, get hands-on experience, and also help solve real-world related problems. I hope to see you all on one of my tours here at UC Merced, where one day you may want to consider becoming a Bobcat too. 




Adam Nakham

He / Him

adam nakham

Hometown: Sacramento, CA

High school: Natomas Pacific Pathway Prep

Major: Psychology / Sociology

Minor: Cognitive Science

Hello Bobcats! My name is Adam Nakham, I'm a fourth year studying psychology and sociology with a minor in cognitive science at UC Merced. I am from Sacramento, CA. I enjoy going outdoors and camping near the beach. Involvements on campus include Sharpp Labs with Dr. Martin Hagger, Homebound as external affairs, and UCM Pilipinx American Alliance (PAA). My Merced hidden gem would be Pretty Good Burger, there's have cheap and delicious grilled burgers that'll make your jaw loosen up to take the biggest juiciest bite of a good burger! This is one of my favorite places to get a quick bite. I hope that you'll also enjoy UC Merced! There are plenty of opportunities and resources to discover!




Sofia Aguilar

She / Her / Hers

sophia aguilar

Hometown: Windsor Hills, CA 

High school: Culver City High School

Major: Public Health 

Minor: Psychology

Hello Scholars!!! My name is Sofia Aguilar, I’m one of the Lead Tour Guides at the UC Merced Welcome Center. I am originally from Los Angeles, California, and attended high school in Culver City, CA. I am currently my third year here at UC Merced, majoring in Public Health with a minor in Psychology. Studying Public Health has allowed my passion for the HealthCare system to grow. A goal/dream of mine is to earn my Doctoral Degree (PhD) in Public Health with hopes of becoming an epidemiologist or a Public Health Advisor for the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). On campus, I’m a student research assistant for The Housing, Opportunity, and Place (HOPe) Lab. At the HOPe lab, we focus on analyzing health inequities that exist within the California Central Valley with the goal of finding solutions to help eliminate those inequities. This year I also look forward to being more involved in some of our clubs here at UC Merced such as our Public Health, Society, and Merced in Motion; as well as joining Greek Life, Delta Epsilon Mu (DEM). Some of my hobbies include painting, playing guitar, hanging out with friends, and going to Downtown Merced to check out our local thrift stores and music stores! Attending UC Merced for my undergraduate studies has been by far one of the best choices I’ve made. Prior to selecting to attend UC Merced, I signed up for a Student Tour with my family; I quickly fell in love with the overall environment and the amazing and easy-to-access resources the campus has to offer. UC Merced has quickly become like a second home for me, and I’m sure it will for you too! If you ever see me around campus, whether doing a morning jog or walking to class, feel free to stop me and say hello. I am so excited to meet you all, and I look forward to being your Student Tour Guide! Lastly, GO BOBCATS!

Student Tour Guides

Adelina Murrilo

She / Her / Ella

adelin amurillo

Hometown: Montebello, CA

High school: MSTMA at Theodore Roosevelt High School

Major: Sociology

Minor: Natural Science Education Program (NSED)

Hello! My name is Adelina Murillo, I was born and raised in Montebello, California and I am currently a third year student at UC Merced. I am majoring in Sociology and minoring in the Natural Science Education Program (NSED). In the future and with the help of my minor, I hope to become an elementary school teacher and be able to work and shape the lives of future generations. Some things I enjoy doing in my free time are spending time with friends, fishing, watching Disney movies, crocheting or just taking naps. On campus I am also involved in one of the student-run clubs, Hermanas Unidas and I am also planning on working with the SATAL research team here on campus to further the improvement and the quality of education being given at UC Merced. Overall, Merced has been the right choice for me because of the strong sense of community that has really allowed me to fit in perfectly and find myself and some of my favorite people! I look forward to sharing my experiences with you as your tour guide!



Alinee Villarreal

She / Her

alinee villarreal

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA 

High school: Environmental Science High School (ESHS)

Major: Psychology

Minor: Spanish

Hello! My name is Alinee Villarreal and I'm a 3rd year here at UCM studying Psychology and minoring in Spanish. I'm from Los Angeles California and like to spend my time watching movies or listening to a good podcast. On campus I explored a couple clubs such as El Club de Espanol, Ballet Folklorico, and a couple more. However, the reason I chose UC Merced was because of their dedication to their mission of providing aid in the professional as well as social development of first generation students like myself.  




Bethany Moody

She / Her / Hers

bethany moody

Hometown: Fresno, CA  

High school: Central East High School

Major: Psychology

Hello! My name is Bethany Moody. I am a second-year Psychology Major from Fresno, California. I am a Pre-Health student hoping to find myself working towards my Physician's Assistant Certification after graduation. I chose UC Merced, not only because of how close to home it is, but the school's overall ambiance, close-knit community, and research opportunities. In my free time, you can find me reading in the library, going for walks around campus, or being part of events held in Downtown Merced!




Des Baltazar

She / Her

des baltazar

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA 

High school: Animo Jackie Robinson High School

Major: Psychology

Minor: Sociology

Hello everyone!!! My name is Desiree Baltazar. I am currently a 3rd year majoring in psychology and minoring in sociology. I am from Los Angeles California. My hobbies are painting,doing makeup, and hanging out with friends. As for my involvement on campus I am in a sorority called Phi Mu and a club called Hermanas Unidas. The reason why I chose Merced is because of the diversity within the campus and the amount of opportunities as being a first generation student.  




Diana Cervantes

She / Her / Hers

diana cervantes

Hometown: Livingston, CA  

High school: Livingston High School

Major: Biological Sciences

Hello everyone! My name is Diana Cervantes, and I am currently a first-year student. I am majoring in Biological Sciences with an emphasis on Human Biology to pursue a pre-med track. My dream is to become an ophthalmologist in the Central Valley. My hometown is Livingston, CA. In my free time you can catch me at the gym, spending time with friends, and especially listening to music! Here on campus, I am involved in the pre-med club, Diversified Doctors at UCM, as well as the Health Scholars Program. I chose UCM because it is the university in which I felt at home! On top of the generous financial aid and countless resources that UCM has to offer, I knew I wanted to be a part of the growing community UCM has built. I am super excited to be one of your fellow tour guides and tell you all about UCM! Welcome future Bobcats, friends and family!



Eliana Torres-Lara

She / Her / Hers

eliana torres-lara

Hometown: Lawndale, CA

High school: Geffen Academy at UCLA

Major: Environmental Engineering

Hello! My name is Eliana Torres-Lara and I'm a 3rd year environmental engineering major. I was born in the Bay (Oakland) and raised in LA, so I personally claim both to be my hometown! I enjoy singing and dancing, going outdoors on different excursions, and playing with my dog, Kosmo. One of my favorite things to do here in Merced is going out with friends Downtown and check out the night markets. Aside from being a tour guide, I'm an Intramural Sports Supervisor and the External Social Chair for La Familia de UC Merced.





Isabella Fuentes-Yip

She / Her / Ella

isabella fuentes-yip

Hometown: Livingston, CA

High school: Livingston High School

Major: Chemistry

Hi everyone! My name is Isabella Fuentes and I am currently a 3rd year Chemistry major here at UC Merced. I am from Livingston, CA which is only 30 minutes away from campus! Outside of school I train and do karate here in Merced, as I am currently a 3rd degree black belt. Besides karate, I also love to read and watch netflix/Hulu or even just hang out with family and friends! I chose to continue my studies here at UC Merced just because it is very close to home and the campus has all the resources I need.




Jaimie Colores Flores

She / Her

jamie colores flores

Hometown: Winton, CA

High school: Atwater High School

Major: Public Health

Hi! My name is Jaimie and I am a third-year majoring in Public Health. I am originally from Winton, CA, only a quick drive away from Merced! My hobbies include painting, baking, and playing tennis. Besides being a tour guide, I am also involved in Greek life, I am the Vice President of Foundation for Delta Gamma so I am in charge of coordinating our Philanthropy events and fundraising and community service events! I chose UC Merced because it is super close to home and I found it to be the perfect environment for me to be able to balance my academics, social, and work life!





Jasmine Junior

She / Her

jasmine junior

Hometown: Redlands, CA

High school: Redlands High School

Major: Public Health

Minor: Psychology

Hello, my name is Jasmine I am a second year here at UC Merced. My major is Public Health but before it was in Biological Sciences. I am from the Inland Empire which is about an hour from LA. Here at UCM we have many hidden gems on campus my favorite is the beautiful sunset view from the third floor of the library. It always takes my breath away. Somethings I like to do in town is going to watch movies or go to market nights. I choose UCM because I wanted a change of scenery. It's a slower pace compared to my hometown, and I also love the quietness.



Jaylynn Lamb

She / Her

jaylynn lamb

Hometown: Linden, CA 

High school / Community College: Linden High School/San Joaquin Delta College

Major: Psychology

Hey y'all! My name is Jaylynn, and I am a first year here at UC Merced where I am currently studying psychology. On campus, I am involved in the Kappa Kappa Gamma social sorority as well as being an officer and founding member of the Photography Club. In my free time, I enjoy all things crafty, over the pandemic I actually started my own candle making business! I am from Linden, California which is a small town about an hour north of Merced, known solely for cherries and baseball. I chose UC Merced, because I loved the small-town community (similar to where i'm from) and I was still relatively close to my family. After graduation, I plan to go back to school in order to receive my Ph.D is psychology, and practice in the field of developmental psychology. I look forward to sharing my experience with all of you, and lastly Go Bobcats!



Jennah Zambrano

She / Her

jennah zambrano

Hometown: Manteca, CA 

High school: Manteca High School 

Major: Pre-Med Psychology 

Hello, my name is Jennah (Jenn), I am a 3rd Year, Pre-Med Psych. During my free time I enjoy, karaoke, hanging out with friends, driving and eating. On campus I am involved with Helping Hands UCM Club as their Social Media Director. Fun fact, Merced’s hidden gem is the field behind Half Dome facing the lake at sunset -- check it out!  My favorite thing to do in Merced is find new places to eat with my friends. Lastly, I chose UC Merced because I’m close to home and I love the environment. 





Katelin Cortez

She / Her / Hers

katelin cortez

Hometown: Corcoran, CA

High school: Corcoran High School

Major: Political Science / Sociology

Hello, my name is Katelin Cortez and I'm a third year double majoring in Political Science and Sociology! My hometown is Corcoran, CA. Some of my hobbies when not studying for a midterm are spending time with dogs, and taking care or buying new plants. My favorite thing to do in Merced is going out to Merced Lake Yosemite and reading a book. I look forward to sharing all of my incredible experiences of UC Merced to you! 





Kayla McCoy

She / Her

kayla mccoy

Hometown: Paradise, CA

High school: COREButte Charter High School

Major: Civil Engineering

Hello and welcome to UC Merced! My name is Kayla McCoy. I am a second year civil engineering major from Paradise, CA. On campus I am a member of the Society of Women Engineers, the Yosemite Leadership Program, the Delta Gamma Social Sorority, and a board member of Bobcat Model United Nations. Some of my hobbies include reading, playing video games, paddleboarding, and hiking. I chose UC Merced because of all of the opportunities the school affords for undergraduate students to participate in research, something I would like to do in the future. I look forward to sharing all of my incredible experiences of UC Merced to you!



Maria Chavez

She / Her / Ella

maria chavez

Hometown: Redwood City, CA 

High school: Sequoia Highschool

Major: Psychology

Whats up! My name is Maria Chavez, I am a 4th-year psychology major. My hometown is Redwood City, CA so I am from the Bay Area. A little bit about myself I'm really into astrology so you'll always catch me asking people what their Zodiac sign is and I am obsessed with anything horror! Some of my favorite things to do in Merced are going to Lake Yosemite and having cute picnics with my partner as well as spending time with my sisters from Sigma Theta Psi which is a sorority on campus I am a part of. I chose UC Merced because of the many opportunities it has to offer. I can't wait to tell you all about them as your tour guide!




Meztli Galicia

She / Her / Hers / Ella

meztli galicia

Hometown: Santa Clarita, CA 

High school: Hart High School

Major: Psychology

Minor: Chicano studies

Hi! My name is Meztli Galicia and I am a first generation fourth year majoring in Psychology and minoring in Chicano Studies. I am originally from Southern California, specifically Santa Clarita. UC Merced was the perfect campus for me because of the many resources that are available and the ambiance that the school has built for its students. I currently do research with Dr. Epperson and that research focuses on health disparities in psychology. My goal is to get my doctorate degree in Psychology and work with kids as their therapist. In my free time, I enjoy trying new things and creating new memories.



Miguel Cruz

He / Him

miguel cruz

Hometown: Santa Ana, CA

High school: Middle College High School

Major: Civil Engineering

Hey everyone, my name is Miguel Cruz, I’m a second-year Civil Engineering major. I’m from Santa Ana, CA, right next to Disneyland. I love to play video games and make music in my free time, specifically music like John Frusciante, I just love his playing style and base mine off his. I’m not involved with too much on campus, but I am a member of SHPE, and I am the Outreach Chair for CESA, but we have yet to grow. One thing I love doing in Merced is going downtown to watch a movie with my buddies and getting tacos afterward. I’d tell you where that is but I’m gatekeeping it, respectfully.




Nicky Lor

He / Him

nicky lor

Hometown: Merced, CA

High school: El Capitan

Major: History

Minor: Natural Science Education Program 

Hello, my name is Nicky Lor. I am in my third year at UC Merced. My major is History, and my minor is Natural Science Education (NSED). I plan to major in that so I can become a history teacher. I am from Merced Cal, born and raised in Merced. Some of my hobbies are hanging out with friends and playing video games. One on-campus involvement will be the Hmong Student Association (HSA), a social Culture club promoting the Hmong culture. One of the reasons I chose UC Merced is that it has many opportunities to offer and a lovely community. I'm excited to see you all here!




Rebecca Rodriguez

She / Her

rebecca rodriguez

Hometown: Inglewood, CA 

High school: Hawthorne High School

Major: Management and Business Economics

Hi! My name is Rebecca Rodriguez and I’m currently a third year majoring in Management and Business Economics. With that, I would love to eventually run and manage my very own hair salon. I came to UC Merced because I’m from a big city and wanted a change of pace. To me, Merced seemed like the perfect place to become a strong, independent individual, and learn more about myself. And on that note, my favorite thing to do on campus is have picnics at the amphitheater by the little lake with friends or even alone. On campus, I am part of the dance team and participate in many volunteer opportunities.




Rosie Cabañas

She / Her / Ella

rose cabanas

Hometown: Anaheim, CA 

High school: Katella High School

Major: History

Minor: Political Science / Natural Science and Education

Hello, future Bobcats! my name is Rosie Cabañas I am a Fourth year here at UC Merced. I am a History major with a minor in Political Science and Natural Science and Education. I am from Anaheim, CA and for the most part, my favorite hobbies are watching Netflix and sleeping with my cat :). The reason I chose UC Merced was not only for the great financial aid I receive but the many opportunities I was going to be able to get as a first-generation student. This is my Fourth year and I can agree I made the best decision. UC Merced has allowed me to grow as a person and as a student. As well as the professors here are so amazing and always willing to work alongside you. A couple of things I am involved in here on campus is Guardian Scholars which helps us former/current foster youth students and any students who have suffered from homelessness. As well I am a part of a NALFO sorority called Kappa Delta Chi Sorority Inc. for our Latinx community. By far the best decision I have made and I am a part of. My plan after I graduate is that I will be continuing here at UC Merced working on gaining my teachers credential through our Teachers Preparation Program. Excited to meet you all!