Mentoring Week

 I ❤️ Mentoring week
February 8-13

Sign up for a time to meet with any one of over 20 alumni for a casual virtual mentoring session. Alumni mentors come from all educational backgrounds and areas of study. Hurry! Space is limited.


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    Andy Wakeland '07, College of Engineering and Science

    Andy Wakeland ‘07
    College of Engineering & Science
    Giffels Webster


    • Monday 2/8/2021 4:00-4:30 pm
    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 4:00-4:30 pm
    BIO: Andy is currently a Senior Project Manager at a local civil engineering design firm. He has worked in
    the Civil Engineering field since 2005 as an intern. He is married with two small kids and a dog. He has
    served on the College of Engineering & Science Alumni board for many years and served on the E&S
    Student Council during his time at University of Detroit Mercy. He has also served on the Madison
    Heights Planning Commission since 2014. He enjoys cooking and won the Detroit Mercy Chili Cook-Off
    three years in a row!

    Angelo Vitale '80, College of Liberal Arts & Education / School of Law

    Angelo Vitale ‘80
    College of Liberal Arts & Education (share with law)
    CEO, Rock Central

    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 3:00-3:30 pm

    BIO: Angelo is the CEO at Rock Central. Previously, he was the Executive Vice President and General
    Counsel for Quicken Loans. In the course of his legal career, Angelo has managed complex class-action
    litigation involving a variety of residential mortgage loan origination and servicing practices. Angelo
    earned his bachelor’s degree from University of Detroit and his law degree from Wayne State University.


    Anthony Sahadi '98, '05, College of Liberal Arts & Education

    Anthony Sahadi ’98, ‘05
    College of Liberal Arts & Education
    Principal, St. Frances Cabrini Grade School


    • Monday 2/8/2021 5:30-6:00 pm
    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 6:00-6:30 pm
    • Thursday 2/11/2021 4:00-4:30 pm
    • Friday 2/12/2021 4:00-4:30 pm
    BIO: Anthony earned his undergraduate degree in History with an Elementary Education Certificate in
    1988, and a Masters in Educational Administration in 2005. Armed with both degrees, he began his
    service with the Archdiocese of Detroit in 1998. Along the way, he taught at Detroit Gesu Catholic
    School, was an Assistant Catholic School Principal with Detroit Christ the King Catholic School, and was a
    Catholic School Principal with Warren St. Anne Catholic Grade School. In 2016, he served the
    Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. as a Catholic School Teacher and Principal. He recently returned to the
    Archdiocese of Detroit where he serves as Principal to Allen Park Cabrini Grade School.

    Carolina Lopez ‘96, School of Architecture

    carolina's headshotCarolina Lopez ‘96
    School of Architecture
    Vice President and Director of Operations, SmithGroup


    • Wednesday, Feb 10, 2021, 10 - 10:30 a.m.
    • Thursday, Feb 11, 2021, 10 - 10:30 a.m.
    • Friday, Feb. 12, 2021, 10 - 10:30 a.m.

    BIO: Carolina combines her skills as an architect and director of operations for the Chicago office of SmithGroup to enrich a wide range of client and project teams. “This role has been a natural evolution for me due to my desire to improve the process in which we design and see the final built environment.” Her portfolio includes several notable research facilities. As a result of her desire to improve the process in which the built environment is designed and executed, her special interest are organization team dynamics and achieving and maintaining a culture that promotes curiosity and continuous improvement. In the complicated and volatile environment of getting great work done collaboratively, Carolina is an exceptional diplomat between vision and realization of process for our clients. Carolina believes, “Great things are achieved with great difficulty, empathy and astute critical examination. I immerse myself in every aspect of the process.”


    Dan Wemhoff '60, College of Liberal Arts & Education

    Dan Wemhoff ‘60
    College of Liberal Arts & Education (Share with law)
    Gun Victim Lawyer; Former Peace Corps Volunteer

    • Monday 2/8/2021 6:00-6:30 pm
    • Wednesday 2/10/2021 3:00-3:30 pm
    • Wednesday 2/10/2021 4:00-4:30 pm
    • Thursday 2/11/2021 3:00-3:30 pm
    BIO: Dan was the first Peace Corps volunteer from the University of Detroit Mercy. He served in
    Colombia in the firs Peace Corps under President Kennedy. He has spent the last 20 years as an attorney
    representing victims of gun violence against assault weapon manufacturers in Washington, D.C.

    Emily Melcher '18, '19, School of Architecture

    Emily Melcher ’18, ‘19
    School of Architecture
    Junior Architecture Coordinator, Bedrock


    • Monday 2/8/2021 8:00-8:30 am
    • Monday 2/8/2021 6:30-7:00 pm
    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 8:00-8:30 am
    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 6:30-7:00 pm
    BIO: Emily has always considered herself to be both left- and right-brained. He has a passion for
    creating, yet she looks at the functionality in every situation. Emily believes design is a subject that is
    largely taken for granted and lived in without much appreciation. It shapes individuals, society, and our
    natural and built environments. It affects the entire human population on both a personal and a global
    scale through both positive and negative functionalities. Architecture is a discipline in both art and
    functionality – a cause to design with purpose. Such design possessed a primary role in her decision to
    pursue architecture. She works to positively impact the lives of individuals through such a built

    Faiza Mohktar ‘12, School of Law

    Faiza's headshotFaiza Mohktar ‘12
    School of Law
    Clearance Manager of Business and Legal Affairs, Tennis Channel


    • Monday 2/8/2021 8:00-8:30 pm
    • Thursday 2/11/2021 8:00-8:30 pm

    BIO: Faiza has nearly a decade of experience in the entertainment industry. She has worked with major studios and production companies such as Warner Brothers, E! Entertainment, Endemol Shine North America, Magical Elves and Vin Di Bona Productions. Her extensive experience in the industry includes on-set production, contract management, contract drafting, rights management, deal negotiations, rights and permissions and project management. Currently, Faiza is the clearance manager at Tennis Channel, a dedicated sports broadcasting network that reaches over 60 million households in the United States.


    Frank Grohnert '79, College of Liberal Arts & Education / School of Law

    Frank Grohnert ‘79
    College of Liberal Arts & Education (share with law)
    Owner, Grohnert & Grohnert Law Office


    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 4:30-5:00 pm
    BIO: Frank has been a practicing attorney since 1982, focusing in Family Law.

    Heather Troup '92, College of Liberal Arts & Education

    Heather Troup ‘92
    College of Liberal Arts & Education
    Director of Development, ProPublica, Inc.


    • Monday 2/8/2021 12:00-12:30 pm
    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 1:30-2:00 pm
    • Thursday 2/11/2021 5:30-6:00 pm
    BIO: Heather is a philanthropy professional who has been the Director of Development and the New
    York investigative journalism firm for nine years. Prior to joining ProPublica, Heather served as Director
    of Development at Independent Diplomat for three years, Director of Development at Coro New York
    Leadership Center for three years and Director of Law Firms, Corporations and the Annual Fund at
    Human Rights First for five years.

    JP Martin '13, School of Law / College of Business Administration

    JP Martin ‘13
    School of Law (share with business)
    General Manager, BELFOR Property Restoration


    • Wednesday 2/10/2021 12:30-1:00 pm
    • Friday 2/12/2021 12:30-1:00 pm
    BIO: JP began his career as an adjuster in property claims, which turned into an auditor role, then claim
    management of adjusters and finally, overseeing the large loss department. During his time as a large
    loss manager, he attended the extended evening law school program to obtain his degree. JP describes
    his time attending law school and working full-time for five years as one of the hardest times of his life.
    After he graduated in 2013, he began a career at the same insurance company in regulatory compliance.
    Later, he moved to Grand Rapids to open a local operation for a property restoration company. After he
    built a business from the ground up over the course of four years, he was recruited as the general
    manager over two BELFOR offices. While he is not a practicing attorney, the skills he learned through
    law school contribute to his success and provided him an opportunity to grow as a business leader and
    he routinely uses his legal background to drive business success, manage employees and make risk-
    assessment decisions.

    Jim Welch '01, College of Business Administration

    Jim Welch ‘01
    College of Business Administration
    Owner, Amaze Travel


    • Monday 2/8/2021 10:30-11:00 am
    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 12:00-12:30 pm
    • Wednesday 2/10/2021 1:30-2:00 pm
    • Thursday 2/11/2021 2:30-3:00 pm

    BIO: Sparked by a lifelong interest and passion in traveling and entrepreneurial spirit, Jim Welch moved
    from a successful 13+ year corporate finance career and co-launched (and co-operates) Amaze Travel
    with his wife, Julie. Jim is a proud Detroiter and growing up could be found on the soccer fields of
    Birminham, and on the golf course or in the pool at Oakland Hills. Jim creates customized and

    personalized travel for couples, families, and multi-generational families. His clients include CEOs,
    executives, family offices, and people from the worlds of sports and entertainment.


    John Dinka, DDS '86, School of Dentistry

    John Dinka, DDS ‘86
    School of Dentistry
    Dentist at Dinka Dental


    • Monday 2/8/2021 7:00-7:30 pm
    • Monday 2/8/2021 7:30-8:00 pm
    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 7:00-7:30 pm
    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 7:30-8:00 pm
    BIO: Learn about John Dinka and his business here: you can
    also connect with him on Forever Titans here:

    Johnathan Shafer '09, College of Engineering & Science / College of Liberal Arts & Education

    Jonathan Shafer ‘09
    College of Engineering & Science; College of Liberal Arts & Education
    U.S. National Park Service


    • Wednesday 2/10/2021 6:00-6:30 pm
    • Friday 2/12/2021 4:30-5:00 pm
    BIO: Jonathan entered his current position in the National Park Service (NPS) in 2018. He serves as
    Region 1 – National Capital Area public affairs specialist for transportation. In this role, he manages
    media relations related to construction and historic rehabilitation projects. Jonathan also supports
    regional and national communications related to COVID-19, special events, and wildfire. Jonathan is a
    class of 2015 Presidential Management Fellow alumnus who formerly served in Lead, Heavy Metals, and
    Inoganics Branch at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). While at EPA, he managed review of
    the Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule and worked to implement the 2016 Lautenberg Chemical
    Safety Act. Jonathan first entered Federal service in 2012 as a Student Conservation Association intern
    at Shenandoah National Park. In the years that followed, he worked as a ranger and public affairs
    specialist at Wright Brothers National Memorial, as well as Isle Royale, Denali, and Yellowstone National

    Kasey Stark '17, College of Engineering & Science / School of Dentistry

    Kasey Stark ‘17
    College of Engineering & Science, School of Dentistry
    Director of Affordability & Solutions, and Clinical Account Consultant, United Healthcare/OptumHealth


    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 5:30-6:00 pm
    • Wednesday 2/10/2020 5:30-6:00 pm
    BIO: Kasey is the Chief Pediatric Dental Resident with NYU Lagone’s program in Anchorage, Alaska. She
    graduated from Detroit Mercy’s seven-year Dental program in 2013. During her time at Detroit Mercy, she
    was the captain of the Detroit Titans Dance team. After graduation, she worked as a General Dentis in
    Otisville, Michigan for two years before applying and matching to a pediatric residency in Anchorage.

    Lisa Schuster '12, College of Liberal Arts & Education

    Lisa Schuster ‘12
    College of Liberal Arts & Education
    Licensed Psychologist, Children’s Medical Center in Dallas


    • Monday 2/8/2021 9:30-10:00 am
    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 9:30-10:00 am
    • Wednesday 2/10/2021 6:30-7:00 pm
    BIO: Lisa is a licensed psychologist specializing in child maltreatment and she currently works in the
    REACH (Referral and Evaluation of At-Risk Children) Clinic at Children’s Medical Center Dallas. In her
    role, she assesses children with concerns of abuse or neglect for difficulties in social emotional or
    behavioral function and evaluate safety, adjustment, and psychosocial risk factors. She was hired at
    Children’s Health in 2015 after completing her Ph. D. in Clinical Psychology at Detroit Mercy in 2012, an
    internship in infant/child mental health at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in 2010,
    and a postdoctoral fellowship in pediatric health psychology at Children’s Medical Center in 2013, with
    concentrated work in child maltreatment.

    Lynn Elliot '88, College of Health Professions / McAuley School of Nursing

    Lynn Elliott ‘88
    College of Health Professions/McAuley School of Nursing
    Director of Affordability & Solutions and Clinical Account Consultant, United Healthcare/OptumHealth


    • Thursday 2/11/2021 4:30-5:00 pm
    BIO: As Director of Affordability & Solutions and Clinical Account Consultant, Lynn is responsible for
    data reporting on health, cost and use regarding programs purchased by large, national and key
    companies for their employees. Her goal is to report to employer groups on the success of their
    nurses and coaches in helping members with chronic or acute conditions to improve their health
    status and quality of life for well members to stay healthy and enhance their state of wellness.

    Mark Sangin '95, School of Architecture

    Mark Sangin ‘95
    School of Architecture
    Architectural Design Manager, Chipman Design Architecture


    • Monday 2/8/2021 5:00-5:30 pm
    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 5:00-5:30 pm
    • Thursday 2/11/2021 10:00-10:30 am

    BIO: Learn about Mark’s experience and skills here:


    Michael McBride '99, College of Business Administration

    Michael McBride ‘99
    College of Business Administration
    Executive Director of Global Design Operations & Immersive Technology, General Motors


    • Monday 2/8/2021 11:00-11:30 am
    • Monday 2/8/2021 2:00-2:30 pm

    BIO: Michael has held a number of positions creating a broad base of managerial, 3D visualization,
    program management, operational excellence and people development skills. Additionally, he has
    served as the “Chief of Staff” for the Vice President of GM Design. He is currently responsible for all of
    GM Design Center’s Global Operations, including budget, business operations, facilities, IT, program
    management, operational excellence, export compliance, and immersive technology.


    Michael Polito '87, College of Liberal Arts & Education

    Michael Polito ‘87
    College of Liberal Arts & Education
    Partner, Polito Rodstrom Burke LLP


    • Tuesday 2/9/2021 1:00-1:30 pm
    • Friday 2/12/2021 1:00-1:30 pm

    BIO: Michael Polio is a partner in the firm which he founded with Derek Rodstrom. Michael is a Native
    Clevelander and attended St. Ignatius High School. His undergraduate studies were completed at the
    University of Detroit, where he was admitted to the Honors program and studied English and
    Philosophy, receiving a Bachelor of Arts in 1987. Michael received a Doctorate of Jurisprudence from
    Cleveland Marshall College of Law in 1990. He is admitted to practice before the United States District
    Court, Northern District of Ohio and the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Michael is a
    member of the Ohio State Bar Association and has served as a delegate to the Eighth Judicial
    Conference. Also he is past president of the Fairview Park Chamber of Commerce. For many years, he
    has coached Little League Baseball. Additionally, Michael has acted as mentor to Cleveland public high
    school students through the Rotsky Foundation for Mentors, and as a mentor to young lawyers through
    the Supreme Court of Ohio’s Lawyer to Lawyer Mentoring Program.


    Peter Namou '17, College of Engineering & Science / School of Dentistry

    Peter Namou ’17
    College of Engineering & Science, School of Dentistry
    Dentist, Warren Laser Dentistry


    • Monday 2/8/2021 7:30-8:00 pm
    • Wednesday 2/10/2021 9:00-9:30 am
    • Wednesday 2/10/2021 7:00-7:30 pm
    • Saturday 2/13/2021 10:00-10:30 am

    BIO: Peter graduated in 2017 from the seven-year BS/DDS program. He works as a general dentist in
    Warren, MI. He performs all disciplines within dentistry. He was a member of Delta Sigma Delta at the
    School of Dentistry and is currently a member of the grad chapter. He is a member of AGD, AAID, AAFE,
    and is on the Alumni Board. He is passionate about helping new and future dentists grow in the field.


    Teresa Thiele '96, College of Business Administration

    Teresa Thiele ‘96
    College of Business Administration
    Director, MOPAR Purchasing & Supplier Operations, Stellantis


    • Wednesday 2/10/2021 5:00-5:30 pm

    BIO: Teresa has automotive experience in purchasing, financing, product development, supply chain,
    and safety/recall management. Teresa is strong in program management, leading change, process
    development, cost analysis, people development, and University recruiting. Teresa is also a member of
    the Alumni Board at University of Detroit Mercy and can often be found attending University events and
    interacting with students.


    Thomas Buysse '83, '87, College of Business Administration / College of Engineering & Science

    Thomas Buysse ’83, ‘87
    College of Business Administration, College of Engineering & Science
    Publisher & President, Fourth Seacoast Publishing Co, Inc.


    • Thursday 2/11/2021 5:00-5:30 pm
    • Friday 2/12/2021 5:00-5:30 pm

    BIO: Thomas is an experienced business owner who has spent over 30 years taking care of customers by
    providing focused marketing/communications tools such as advertising opportunities in nationwide
    cargo reference directories, email marketing, website development, website promotion, copy
    writing/editing, and more. He has learned first-hand that helping your customer out in unique ways is
    the key to success. Thomas has been with Fourth Seacoast Publishing for over 30 years. He has previous
    experience as a reporter with the Detroit Free Press.


    Vanessa Lee '19, College of Health Professions

    Vanessa Lee ‘19
    College Health Professions
    Grad Student, University of Michigan School of Nursing; Research Assistant, Michigan Medicine


    • Monday 2/8/2021 1:00-1:30 pm
    • Monday 2/8/2021 1:30-2:00 pm
    • Friday 2/12/2021 1:30-2:00 pm
    • Friday 2/12/2021 2:00-2:30 pm

    BIO: Vanessa is a first generation student who graduated from University of Detroit Mercy with a BSN
    and a minor in Leadership. During her four years at Detroit Mercy, she was in the NIH ReBUILDetroit
    Scholar program, conducting research and mentoring nursing/biology students. She was very active in
    volunteering and served as the community outreach chair member for Campus Kitchen. She also worked
    as a SNA at DMC, CNA at Michigan Medicine, and student ambassador for Kaplan. Immediately after
    graduation and passing the NCLEX, she started working as an RN at Michigan Medicine on their
    Ortho/Trauma unit. She currently does research at Michigan Medicine in their Department of Psychiatry
    as a Research Assistant. She is also a second year full-time student at University of Michigan School of
    Nursing in their Adult-Gerontology Primary Care 3-year BSN to DNP Program. She recently finished her
    second rotation in Adult Palliative Care at Michigan Medicine. After graduation, he hopes to pursue a


    Vania Noguez '20, College of Business Administration

    Vania Noguez ‘20
    College of Business Administration
    Buyer, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles


    • Monday 2/8/2021 7:00-7:30 pm
    • Thursday 2/11/2021 6:00-6:30 pm
    • Thursday 2/11/2021 7:00-7:30 pm

    BIO: Vania graduated in May 2020 from the five-year BS/MBA Business Administration program with
    concentrations in Finance and Marketing. While she was in school, she was involved in several
    leadership and extracurricular activities including Residence Life, Digital Ambassador Program, The
    Writing Center, Presidential Ambassador Program, Campus Ministry, and others. She is truly passionate
    about activism, service, and personal growth. Currently, she works full-time as a Buyer in Purchasing at
    Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. This exciting role involves the procurement of commodities, strategic
    sourcing, and negotiation of contracts. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family,
    teaching English to Chinese students through the program Hi-Link, and growing her knowledge on