Faculty & Staff - Resident Assistants
This is Hannah LaPrise's third year as an RA at GSSE, and her second year as one of the two head RAs. She happily attends UTK, and will be a "super" senior this fall. Hannah, regrettably, is not well versed in the realms of math, sciences, and engineering. However, she does study global studies (her major), political science, religious studies (her major) linguistics, and dinosaurs. And food. When she isn't doing homework, Hannah likes reading, cooking, swimming, and watching movies with friends. She is super excited for Governor's School to start!
Desta was born in 1991 and grew up on a farm in the small village of Wotera in Southern Ethiopia. After completing the 8th grade in his home village, he went to high school in Hawassa, the capital city of the Southern State of Ethiopia. When he was a Junior in high school, Desta had an opportunity to go to Signal Mountain High School in Chattanooga as an exchange student through the Cherokee Gives Back Education Program, being one of 21 students selected from Ethiopian high schools to participate in the program. He co-founded a Non-governmental Organization (NGO) in Ethiopia that supports high school students from poor families by offering tutorial classes, collaborates with other local and International NGOs to empower women, creates job opportunities for youth, and creates awareness about HIV/AIDS in rural Ethiopia. The organization also works with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) to protect environmental degradation by planting trees. In addition, with his former host school and family, he raises money to build water wells, classrooms, and buy books for schools in his home village through “Walk for Wotera” and “Water for Wotera” events.
Desta is a senior, double majoring in Chemistry and BCMB. Also, he is one of fifteen 2010 Haslam Scholars. Last year, Desta worked as a teaching assistant in Biology and, this year, he is taking on a double role as an RA and TA. He is looking forward to working with students during five weeks of Governor School. Desta enjoys biking, running, playing soccer, and volleyball.
Matthew Goodman graduated last May from Tennessee Tech with a degree in accounting. He is currently working on his Masters in Divinity at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in hopes of becoming a pastor or overseas missionary. He attended GSSE in the summer of 2007. This will be his fifth and final year as an R.A. He is looking forward to yet another fun summer. Proceed to party!
Jessica Grenvik is a rising sophomore at the University of Tennessee. On campus, Jessica is part of the Chancellor's Honors Program, is on the Equestrian Team, and is a member of Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority. She plans to double major in Biochemistry and Neuroscience and minor in Spanish. After undergraduate school, she hopes to attend medical school to become a surgeon. In her free time, Jessica enjoys riding horses, working out, and painting. Jessica attended GSSE in 2011 where she studied biology. Because of her wonderful experience at Governor's School, she decided to come back again! This time, she is looking forward to helping her residents study while also having lots of fun. She already has lots of fun games and crafts planned, so her residents should come prepared for a great time!
This is my first year as an RA. I'm a rising junior at Tusculum College, majoring in Pre-physical Therapy. I'm a member of the TC volleyball team, and I'm also a 2nd degree black belt in Tae kwon do. My favorite things to do are eat and sleep, when I'm not working out or playing volleyball!
This is Stephanie's first year as a governor's school RA. She is a rising junior majoring in anthropology from Johnson City, TN. During the school year, Stephanie is involved with Greek life, VolCorps Ambassadors, the Chancellor's Honors Program, and interning at the Forensic Anthropology center. When she's not studying, sleeping, or eating, she loves reading, hiking, shopping, and hanging out with friends. She's so excited to spend her summer with everyone involved with GSSE!
Arian just graduated from UTK with a bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Engineering with a minor in Biology. This is his last good summer before starting medical school in Memphis this fall. He’s excited, but at the same time, he’s so nervous he’s shaking in his little boots! When not eating, sleeping, or watching TV, Arian can be occasionally seen outside, biking or playing soccer. This is his second year as an RA, and Arian is looking forward to making new friends and making new memories!
Fun Fact: Arian's favorite movie is Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel.
Chris just graduated from UTK with a bachelor’s degree in Aerospace Engineering and a minor in Mechanical Engineering. He loves all things space related and can’t wait to get started on his Master’s degree in Astronautics at Purdue next year. This is his first summer as a GSSE RA and Chris is super excited to make lots of new friends. Besides day dreaming about space ships, Chris can often be seen playing soccer and hanging out around campus. He thinks this is going to be the best summer ever!
Eileen is a rising senior at Vanderbilt University, though she will always call Knoxville home. She is majoring in neuroscience and minoring in theatre, and will be applying to medical schools this summer. Though this is her first year with GSSE, she knows it'll be awesome and super educational. In her free time, she enjoys watching The Mindy Project, listening to One Direction, and going to the lake with friends.
Jakob Samsel is a rising sophomore at The University of Tennessee. Jake is majoring in BCMB, and plans to attend The College of Veterinary Medicine at UT after completing a bachelor’s degree. He loves any kind of animal and looks forward to a career around them. When not studying, Jake enjoys camping, hiking, painting, and working on his antique car. He attended GSSE in 2011 and had a fantastic time. He met so many of his closest friends, many of which attend UTK with him, at GSSE when he was a student. He can’t wait to come back as an RA! Jake is excited for what will be a great summer with new friends and experiences.
Emily is a rising junior at Middle Tennessee State. She is a biology major with an intent to attend grad school and become involved with Environmental Toxicology research. On campus, Emily is an RA during the school year, a Buchanan Fellow, and will be starting work as a research assistant in a lab this fall. While she attended GSSE as a student in 2010, this will be Emily’s first time as an RA with the program. When she’s not studying or sleeping, Emily enjoys hanging out with friends, reading, listening to music, and going on adventures. Emily is so excited about being a part of this program and can’t wait to spend all summer working on her Chaco tan and making new friends!