FOCUS is run by three student coordinators who meet throughout the academic year and work in the summer to plan a memorable experience for first-year students. They work with our community partners to plan service projects, choose and train the rest of our student staff, and communicate with all interested incoming first years about the program. Please contact Us if you have any questions.

Each FOCUS group is led by two student leaders. Leaders are volunteers who have demonstrated their passion for welcoming the first year class and community service. Your FOCUS leaders work with you at each site, plan group activities, and navigate their groups through the greater Boston area. All of our leaders participate in training that includes leadership development, campus resources, facilitation, group dynamics, and community service issues in order to serve as effective resources for their first-year students.

FOCUS support staff make sure the program runs smoothly. They manage the behind-the-scenes tasks like delivering supplies, luggage, and groceries and working with the coordinators each day to make sure every detail is taken care of.

FOCUS Leaders

2019 Student Coordinators


AddyAddy Ball


Originally from Mill Valley, California, Addy Ball is a rising junior and double-major in Community Health and Science, Technology & Society. She is currently the co-president of Leonard Carmichael Society's DREAM, a community organizer for Tufts Dining Action Coalition, secretary of Tufts EMS-AID, and a member of Tufts Dance Collective and Tufts Burlesque Troupe. An avid traveler and cook, Addy loves adventuring and baking her famous sea-salt chocolate chip cookies for friends and family. When she's not cheering for her beloved San Francisco Giants, you can find her with her friends listening to the latest from her favorite artist, Kehlani. After participating in FOCUS as a first-year and last year as a support staffer, she can't wait to follow in the footsteps of past coordinators in welcoming the next first-year class to Tufts!


Julia Grier


Julia Grier is a rising Junior, majoring in International Relations. Though she has embraced Boston as her second home, she has yet to become accustomed to the shortness of New England winter days and will always be a Virginian at heart. In addition to FOCUS, she is involved in Generation Citizen, Tufts Model UN, and TFL, a comedy group for gender-minorities. When not doing homework in the depths of Tisch Library, she can be found watching her beloved University of Virginia Cavaliers play basketball or The West Wing and drinking tea. Having participated in FOCUS both as a first-year and a Support Staffer, Julia is delighted to welcome the class of 2023 and can't wait for FOCUS to start!

ZachZachary Hertz


Originally from Davis, California, Zach is attempting to bring some California warmth to the hill during his time coordinating FOCUS. Zach graduated from Tufts in 2019, with a BA in Political Science and a minor in philosophy. During his time at Tufts, he was a Managing Editor for the Tufts Daily and on the executive board of Theta Chi Fraternity, in addition to being involved in the Association of Multiracial People of Tufts, Tufts Quiz Bowl, and the Asian American Center. Outside of the Campus Center you can find him trying to listen to a new album every day or raving about The Good Place. He’s FO-excited to see the Class of 2023 at Tufts for pre-orientation!

Program Advisor

Brianda Hernandez Cavalcanti

Student Programs Administrator- Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life

Brianda works in Student Programs at Tisch College. In her role, she provides support to Tisch College student affiliate organizations and other student groups on campus. Her background also includes working with grassroots organizations in predominantly Latinx communities in the areas of youth leadership, food, and mental health advocacy. She received her B.A. in Urban Studies and Planning from California State University-Northridge and an M.A. in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning from Tufts University. Brianda was born in Jalisco, Mexico, and raised in Los Angeles, CA. She is a lover of good food, the sun, and considers herself a Mother Nature warrior.


John Wescott

John Wescott

Assistant Director, Programming, Office for Campus Life

John has a passion for social action and leadership development, and has ten years of experience volunteers with Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership (HOBY) New Hampshire, a youth leadership organization that inspires and develops our global community of youth and volunteers to a life dedicated to leadership, service and innovation. Originally from New Hampshire, when John isn’t working, you can usually find him exploring Boston and the outdoors with friends and family, or soaking up the sun on the beach. John’s role advising FOCUS includes assisting with operations and logistics, program management, staff hiring, and budget management.

2019 Student Leaders

Alekya Menta

Alekya is a sophomore Biopsychology major from Orange, CT who loves Carm almost as much as her stomach hates dairy. She is involved with Tufts Pulse (our Indian classical dance team on campus), Sharewood, Tour Guiding, and is a research assistant at a psych lab on campus.

Alexandra  Strong

Alexandra is an Anthropology major and English minor from Los Angeles (west coast best coast).  When she isn't hanging out with first years doing community service, you might see her singing with her a cappella group, giving campus tours, or reading and  jammin' to Spotify on Prez Lawn.

Asha Iyer

Asha is a Cognitive and Brain Sciences Major/Film and Media Studies Minor from Richmond, VA. She can be found dancing with Tufts JumboRaas or walking dogs on campus!!

Avani Ramachandra

I am a biomedical engineer from a suburb right outside of Chicago. Outside of class I teach elementary school students in the Medford/Somerville area and am often found hanging out in Davis Square.

Catherine Gross

Catherine is majoring in Community Health & Psychology, with a minor in Spanish and is from Franklin, MA (but went to high school in Woonsocket, RI!). In her free time she teaches health education classes to 9th graders through Peer Health Exchange, and works in a psychology lab researching memory and cognition.

Charlotte Lenz

Charlotte is a Biology Major on a pre-med track with a minor in Art History from Santa Cruz, California. You can find her in a boat during sailing practice on Mystic Lake, drinking a cup of coffee in the SEC, taking a nap in 574 or giving tours around campus!

Daniella Faura

Daniella is from the Los Angeles area and is studying International Relations and Economics. Outside the classroom, she is a part of Tufts DREAM and works for the OCL.

Danny Gur

Danny is a Clinical Psychology Major and Green Dot Ambassador from Westchester, New York. If you look closely, you can find Danny dancing in any public space for an extended period of time or passionately defending Carm's superiority over Dewick to any naysayers.

Eamon Mahoney

Eamon is an Economics and Psychology double major from Winchester, MA! He spends all of his free time singing with the Tufts Beelzebubs, an all-male a cappella group on campus!

Emma Damokosh

Emma is a Political Science and Film and Media studies double major from West Hartford, CT. If given the opportunity, she would spend every single day eating the iconic Tufts butternut squash and watching every single comedy special on Netflix.

Emma Tombaugh

Emma is a Geology major (it rocks!) from northern New Jersey. In her free time she likes to dance, go hiking, or read on the Pres Lawn.

Grace Materne

Grace is a Biology and Community Health double major from Carlisle, MA. On campus, she works in a genetics research lab and is involved in Tufts Timmy Global Health.

Grace Fabrycky

Grace is a Sociology and Political Science double-major from McLean, Virginia. Grace is a member of the Women's Crew Team, does Big Brothers Big Sisters, and is a member of SYNS on campus.

Jaclyn Tsiang

Jaclyn is a Computer Science Major with a minor in Urban Studies from the Bay Area in California. She loves rock climbing and hiking in her free time, and is also mentors a 6th grader through the DREAM mentor ship program.

Jefferson Xu

Jefferson is a biopsychology major from Staten Island, NY. On campus, he is involved with DREAM, Tufts Jazz Ensemble, and is a research assistant at the Tufts Boston Campus. You can usually spot him anywhere on campus in his usual sweater and sandals outfit!

Jesse Ryan

Jesse is an American Studies and Anthropology double major from just outside of Boston. Jesse organizes with the Tufts Labor Coalition, edits for the Tufts Observer, and works on campus as a Writing Fellow.

Jillian Impastato

Jillian is an Art History and Education double major from New York (no, not the city... yes, Westchester). She works at the student-run coffee shop and at the Tufts Art Galleries (that most students don't even know we have).

Jordan Gans

Jordan is an economics and psychology major from Doylestown, Pennsylvania. In his free time, he's probably cooking or eating out somewhere.

Julian Balkcom

Julian is a Child Study & Human Development major and a Food Systems & Nutrition minor from New Hyde Park, NY! A member of the Association of Multiracial People at Tufts and LCS Junior Jumbos, Julian loves to sing in the *~freshest~* all-gender a cappella group on campus, Tufts sQ!

Kenia French

Kenia is a double major in International Relations and Environmental Science. When she's not playing ultimate frisbee, you can find her watching cooking shows on Netflix or eating Cajun fries at the Campus Center.

Kevin Doherty

Kevin is an International Relations Major from Topsfield, Massachusetts, home of the country's oldest agricultural fair and former home of the world's largest pumpkin (the Germans stole the record). He loves playing club volleyball and pickup basketball at Tufts and loves spinning himself in circles with those pesky philosophical questions.

Maddie Oliff

Maddie is studying sociology and American studies, and originally from Chicago. Outside the classroom, she's either dancing with her Tamasha teammates, listening to her Discover Weekly playlist, or enjoying the sunshine on the prez lawn.

Madelyn Allen

Maddy is a double-major in Community Health and Education from Lexington, Massachusetts. She loves french bulldogs, playing Ultimate Frisbee with the Tufts BWO team, teaching kids about vegetables with Kids In Nutrition club, and seltzer.

Nicole McHenry

Nicole is a Community Health major and French enthusiast fresh off a semester in Senegal and summer at home in Seattle. Catch her dancing around campus with the Ballroom Team and around Boston with Peer Health Exchange (or seeking out brunch)!  

Rachel Klein

Rachel is from (northern!) California and is double majoring in Environmental Studies and Religion. When she's not busy worrying about global warming or doing research on the Bible, you can find her hanging out with the kids of Tufts DREAM, playing frisbee, or talking her friends' ears off about all the crazy things she did while studying abroad.

Ryan McCarragher

Ryan is a Biopsychology major and Child Development minor from right outside DC (Chevy Chase MD). When not drinking coffee and working in the Rez, you can find him teaching engineering to elementary schoolers in Boston, dancing in a TDC performance, or listening to Dua Lipa.

Santiago Noriega

Santiago is a CBS and Bio Major, from Torreon, Mexico. His favorite hobbies include watching old sitcoms and following FC Barcelona.

Sonya Bhatia

Sonya Bhatia is a sociology major on the pre med track all the way from Houston, Texas. Outside of class, she stays busy like writing and editing for the Tufts Observer and painting (for the journey, not the destination).

Tos (Thomas) Chan

Tos is a senior from Wayland, MA studying biology and computer science. You'll likely find them enjoying a Medford Fog in the Rez.

Will  Youman

I'm a double-major in Cognitive and Brain Sciences and Philosophy from outside of Philadelphia. If you ever need me, I'm probably in the Rez.

William Lynn

Billy is an Economics and Theatre major from Chicago (actual Chicago). He can consistently be found in the arts building on campus, performing, working, or just talking theatre.


2019 Support Staff

Alexandra Soo

Alex is a English and Spanish major from Michigan! She does comedy and sometimes is funny, depends on the political climate.

Chris LaBudde

Chris hails from Hamilton, Massachusetts and is a pre-med student most likely majoring in either Biology or Biopsych. When he's not hitting the books, you can probably find playing quidditch or helping to run Tufts Best Buddies.

Drew Sevilla

Drew is a Human Factors Engineering major on the pre-medical track from Los Angeles, California (West Coast best coast!). If not up late studying with friends, he's either in the psychology building as a research assistant, or volunteering at a local hospital!

Eli Glass

Eli is a pre-med student from Tenafly, New Jersey majoring in Biopsychology. When not in class, Eli is an active member of Tufts DREAM, and can also often be found watching soccer while putting off his schoolwork.

Elsa Rohm

Elsa is an environmental engineering and community health double major from Providence, Rhode Island. She spends her free time hanging out in Carm or working with Engineers Without Borders!

Emma Winey

Emma is a sophomore, Political Science and Economics double major from Melrose, MA (a whopping 12 minutes from Tufts).  At Tufts, when she isn't spending all her Jumbo Cash at the Rez, she is performing in Torn Ticket II musicals, giving admissions tours, facilitating voter registration for Jumbo Vote, or working in the Office of Alumni Relations.

Georgia Kay

Georgia is an American Studies major from Chicago, Illinois. Georgia finds joy in organizing with Tufts Labor Coalition, singing with her A cappella group, and making jewelry for friends and family. She can't wait for another great year of FOCUS! 

Margaret Parish

Margaret is a Child Study and Human Development major from Lyme, New Hampshire. When not in class or rehearsal for a show, she can be found getting TRUNK-y with Tufts Traveling Treasure TRUNK!, a children's theater troupe, or DREAM-ing with the Tufts' chapter of DREAM, a village mentoring organization.

Marwah  Kiani

Marwah is a community health major and religion minor from NYC. She is a member of Strong women strong girls, Peer health exchange and also ROOTS as a spoken word artist. When she's not in class you can see her with friends goofing off and having a good time

Matt Zachem

Matt is a Political Science major from New Jersey (the part that claims to be from New York City). At Tufts, he is involved in Generation Citizen and TDC, and he also serves on the Elections Commission.

Nithya Badrinath

Nithya is an International Relations Major from San Jose, California. When she's not talking about the West Coast being the superior coast, you can find her chasing after the Joey or studying in Carm.

Rachel Wang

Rachel is a potential psychology and political science double major from Seattle! On campus, you can find her mentoring a group of 3rd-5th grade girls through Strong Women, Strong Girls, leading groups of prospective students around campus as a tour guide, and volunteering as an LCS tutor.

Sabrina Wen

Sabrina is sophomore from New York City majoring in International Relations and Computer Science. On campus she is a member of ALLIES and Generation Citizen, and off campus she enjoys consuming unhealthy amounts of bubble tea.

Samantha Raymond

Samantha is an international relations major from right outside of Philadelphia, PA. She can be found volunteering with Tufts Best Buddies or taking long walks across campus.

Shannon Cloherty

Shannon is a Community Health and Environmental Studies major from Braintree, MA. She's passionate about the Red Line, Peer Health Exchange, and strawberries on Sunday in Dewick.

Sofia Friedman

Sofia is a Psychology and Civic Studies double major from the golden state of sunny California... West Coast (Best Coast)! On campus, you can spot her at the gym, in a DREAM or Friends of Israel meeting, or at Encendido dance practice.

Sonam Delhiwala

Sonam is a rising Sophomore majoring in Psychology, and, as you'll quickly figure out since she talks about it too much, comes from the great state of New York. When not drinking coffee and doing homework in Tisch Library, you can find her making artwork for Currents Magazine or showing everyone pictures of the puppy she walks for Animal Aid.

Tejus Govani

Tejus is a Poli-Sci and Environmental Studies Major from Princeton NJ. When he's not procrastinating doing actual work, he is usually telling bad jokes or auditioning for something or the other.

Yashi Thakurani

Yashi is a sophomore from Ocho Rios, Jamaica. She is studying Biology and American Studies, and she couldn't be more excited to welcome new Jumbos to campus!