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Meet the Recent-Grad Council

What is the Recent-Grad Council?

The Recent-Grad Council is a group of UW alumni who are all within 10 years of graduation and serve as peer advocates for recent graduates around the world. They work with the Wisconsin Alumni Association (WAA) to provide engaging, meaningful programs and resources for their fellow Badgers.

Join Us!

Interested in joining the next cohort of the Recent-Grad Council? Fill out the interest form! You’ll become a peer voice for recent UW grads, help WAA plan events, and assist in developing new programs to benefit students and recent grads. In return, you’ll get a complimentary two-year WAA membership with all its perks — plus the opportunity to build your personal and professional network of Badgers!

Questions? Email srg@uwalumni.com.

Y’Noka Bass ’18

Y’Noka Bass ’18
Pronouns:
She/Her
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Current Town: Chicago, IL
Majors at the UW: English, Legal Studies
Activities at the UW: Badger Volunteers, Center for Cultural Enrichment, Associated Students of Madison
Current Job/Industry: Attorney

“I joined the Recent-Grad Council as a way to connect back with the university in a new light. It was really a chance to grow on my undergraduate experience by connecting with alumni who I hadn’t had the chance to meet while in undergrad. It’s also a great way to engage with other attorneys who graduated from the UW, whether that be for undergrad or law school.”

Denzel Bibbs ’19

Denzel Bibbs ’19
Pronouns:
He/Him
Hometown: Schererville, IN
Current Town: Madison, WI
Majors at the UW: Mechanical Engineering
Activities at the UW: Chancellors Scholar, Leaders in Engineering Excellence and Diversity Scholar, National Society of Black Engineers, UW Makerspace
Current Job/Industry: Project Manager in Construction Management

“I am thrilled to join the Recent-Grad Council to reconnect with fellow alumni. I think it is a great opportunity to broaden my network with the UW–Madison community. I had a fantastic undergraduate experience while I was on campus. This school is what brought me to Wisconsin, and I would like to give back to the community by building opportunities for recent graduates.”

Izzy Boudnik ’21

Izzy Boudnik ’21
Pronouns:
She/Her
Hometown: Milwaukee, WI
Current Town: Philadelphia, PA
Majors at the UW: Political Science, Educational Policy Studies Certificate, Honors in the Liberal Arts
Activities at the UW: Daily Cardinal, Open Seat On-Campus Food Pantry, Center for the First-Year Experience Undergraduate Teaching Fellow
Current Job/Industry: Program Coordinator at the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School

“I didn’t know how much I would miss the UW until I moved to Philadelphia after graduating. I joined the Recent-Grad Council as a way to stay connected to a place that has had a significant impact on my life and to be in community with others who feel similarly. Additionally, as a first-generation graduate of the UW, I wanted to ensure that voices of recent grads and alumni from underrepresented backgrounds are heard.”

Olivia Cook ’17

Olivia Cook ’17
Pronouns:
She/Her
Hometown: Mount Horeb, WI
Current Town: Tallahassee, FL
Major at the UW: Human Development and Family Studies with certificates in Scandinavian Studies and Studio Art
Activities at the UW: The Studio Learning Community, Seeking Educational Equity and Diversity Seminars, Study Abroad (Norway), College Democrats, Norwegian Language Table
Current Job/Industry: Postdoctoral Scholar and Quantitative Research

“I am thrilled to serve on the Recent-Grad Council! Specifically, I hope to contribute to the RGC’s advocacy for alumni from minoritized backgrounds and identities, as the UW’s commitment to these students spans beyond graduation. I am eager to facilitate partnerships between the RGC and other UW groups, such as learning and affinity communities, that have served students during their undergraduate experience.”

Abby Grant ’23

Abby Grant ’23
Pronouns: She/Her
Hometown: Glenview, IL
Current Town: Chicago, IL
Major at the UW: Civil Engineering
Activities at the UW: Steel Bridge Competition Team, American Society of Civil Engineers, Undergraduate Learning Center Tutor, Kappa Alpha Theta
Current Job/Industry: Engineering Consulting

“When I found out about the RGC, applying was an easy decision for me. Wisconsin brought me some of the most memorable moments and friendships of my life, and I want to be involved in helping people maintain and grow those connections. UW–Madison is not just a place we attend college. It’s also a supportive community for the rest of our lives. I’m excited to start planning events for former Badgers to reconnect with our alma mater!”

Hannah Herbst ’22

Hannah Herbst ’22
Pronouns: She/Her
Hometown: Monroe, WI
Current Town: Milwaukee, WI
Major at the UW: Agricultural Business Management
Activities at the UW: Mercile J. Lee Scholar, Association of Women in Agriculture, AreaRED
Current Job/Industry: Pharmaceutical Software

“I am excited to join the Recent-Grad Council for the opportunity to reconnect and collaborate with fellow alumni. I am committed to connecting local Badgers in a way that positively impacts the community and builds opportunities for recent graduates. I am very excited to start this journey with the alumni association and other council members!”

Max Herteen ’21

Max Herteen ’21
Pronouns:
He/Him
Hometown: Milwaukee, WI
Current Town: Evanston, IL
Majors at the UW: English and History with Comprehensive Honors
Activities at the UW: Honors Student Organization, All-University Strings, GreenHouse Learning Community, Dean’s Ambassadors Program
Current Studies: Educational Policy and Leadership, PhD Candidate at Marquette University

“I had a fantastic experience at the UW, and I couldn’t turn down the chance to stay connected to the school in such a meaningful way. I’m thrilled to work with other recent grads and hopefully be a successful advocate for other Badgers around the world. I am also excited to gain new perspectives from other members of the council and translate my passion and pride into ideas and events. I’m definitely a “hype man” type of person, so being on the Recent-Grad Council is a more formal way to share the enthusiasm I already have in my day-to-day life! Once a Badger, always a Badger!”

Juhi Jhaveri '21, ’22

Juhi Jhaveri 21, ’22
Pronouns:
She/Her
Hometown: Long Grove, IL
Current Town: Chicago, IL
Majors at the UW: Psychology and Nursing
Activities at the UW: Wisconsin Alumni Student Board, Campus and Visitor Relations Tour Guide
Current Job/Industry: Registered Nurse at Northwestern Medicine

“I am excited to join the Recent-Grad Council because it will give me the opportunity to stay connected with the university as well as fellow alumni from all over the world. Since my undergraduate years, I have always been passionate about connecting Badgers from all points of life, and being part of the Recent-Grad Council will give me the ability to do that as a proud alumna. Being part of this council is something that is extremely important to me, and I am so excited to start my journey with the alumni association and my fellow council members!”

Jai Khanna ’21

Jai Khanna ’21
Pronouns:
He/Him
Hometown: Delhi, India
Current Town: Milwaukee, WI
Major at the UW: Mechanical Engineering
Activities at the UW: Dean of Students Advisory Board, Wisconsin School of Bhangra, Aa Dekhen Zara, COVID Committee
Current Job/Industry: Project Engineer

“Being a part of the Recent-Grad Council at UW–Madison, I am genuinely passionate and looking forward to networking and meeting new people. The prospect of connecting with fellow alumni and forging meaningful relationships within the community excites me. I am eager to contribute my energy and ideas to create an unparalleled experience for our fellow graduates, to help us stay connected and engaged with our alma mater. Being a part of this council allows me to foster new ideas and be an integral part of UW–Madison’s ever-evolving story, ensuring that our collective impact continues to grow and thrive. I look forward to experiencing the global impact we bring through our efforts at RGC.”

Elizabeth Laning ’22

Elizabeth Laning ’22
Pronouns: She/Her
Hometown: Pewaukee, WI
Current Town: Madison, WI
Major at the UW: Global Health
Activities at the UW: Wisconsin Alumni Student Board, obstetrics and gynecology research, public health research, Wiscience Service Learning peer leader, Girls Inc. volunteer, Badger Cru
Current Job/Industry: Medical Surgery

“When I applied to UW–Madison, I distinctly remember writing in my personal statement that I wanted to ‘ooze red and white’ and embrace Badger pride. As an alumna, I am so proud that I went to UW–Madison and my experience can speak to not only the traditions we share as Badgers but also the tight-knit community. I know Madison is always a place I will call home. Thus, I joined the RGC to continue the momentum of fostering community within the Badger network, creating a space for all Badgers to feel proud of their alma mater and stay connected to fellow Badgers.”

Jackson Miller ’20

Jackson Miller ’20
Pronouns:
He/Him
Hometown: Plymouth, MN
Current Town: Minneapolis, MN
Majors at the UW: Business Administration
Activities at the UW: Food Recovery Network — Madison Chapter, Finance and Investment Society
Current Job/Industry: Financial Analyst, Manufacturing

“I’m excited to be able to connect with other Badgers from around the country. I’m also excited to have the opportunity to better connect with local Badger alumni in a way that positively impacts the community.”

Lennox Ochieng ’23

Lennox Ochieng ’23
Pronouns: He/Him
Hometown: Nairobi, Kenya
Current Town: New York City, NY
Major at the UW: Actuarial Science, Finance
Activities at the UW: Student Services Finance Committee, Associated Students of Madison, King Morgridge Scholarship Program
Current Job/Industry: Actuarial Assistant

“I am thrilled to become a part of the Recent-Grad Council, as it presents a unique chance to maintain strong ties with the broader UW–Madison community, all the while advocating for the voices of my fellow recent Badger alumni. I eagerly anticipate collaborating with other bright and forward-thinking members of the council to develop impactful programs and resources that benefit Badgers worldwide, with a particular focus on those from underrepresented communities, like the one I hail from. On, Wisconsin!”

Jordan Pasbrig ’20, MS’21

Jordan Pasbrig ’20, MS’21
Pronouns: He/Him
Hometown: Wauwatosa, WI
Current Town: Washington, D.C.
Major at the UW: BBA in Marketing and Political Science, MS in Business Analytics
Activities at the UW: Wisconsin Alumni Student Board, Associated Students of Madison, Student Council, Student Services Finance Committee, Chi Psi Fraternity (The Lodge), Interfraternity Council, Campus and Visitor Relations tour guide, Wisconsin Model United Nations
Current Job/Industry: Managing Economic Consultant

“I believe that the Recent-Grad Council is uniquely well-positioned to foster some of the most meaningful alumni connections in the history of the university. The RGC serves as a facilitator between young alumni and the university and should create spaces in which recent graduates can build on their relationship with the UW from wherever they are. Serving on the Recent-Grad Council will provide me opportunities to meaningfully engage recent graduates with the university and the broader alumni community, help foster the same shared sense of Badger pride that we feel while singing “Varsity” at Camp Randall, and play a small role in reinvigorating and reinventing preexisting relationships with the university.”

Jelani Perez ’17

Jelani Perez ’17
Pronouns:
He/Him
Hometown: Bronx, NY
Current Town: New York City , NY
Majors at the UW: Rehabilitation Psychology
Activities at the UW: Black History Month and Latinx Heritage Month Planning Committees, Bias Response Team, Diversity Squad
Current Job/Industry: Higher Education

“I decided to join RGC to stay connected to the university and create new experiences for younger alumni. I am committed to developing spaces that are inclusive of different identities and foster a sense of belonging. RGC is a great opportunity to develop my skills in program development and inclusion initiatives. I have gained a stronger connection to the UW through this experience and feel like I have a direct hand in creating community on campus and beyond.”

Jasmyne Short ’22

Jasmyne Short ’22
Pronouns: She/Her
Hometown: Racine, WI
Current Town: Ann Arbor, MI
Major at the UW: Social Work
Activities at the UW: Center for Educational Opportunity Scholar, McNair Scholar, Wisconsin Black Student Union, African Student Association, Wisconsin Association of Black Men
Current Job/Industry: Career Services

“I am thrilled to join the Recent-Grad Council because it offers me the perfect opportunity to remain connected to UW–Madison and continue my dedication to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). As a Black woman and first-generation college student, my undergraduate journey was defined by both my academic achievements and my commitment to creating spaces that fostered DEI. I was involved in various campus organizations and initiatives aimed at promoting inclusivity. I have a great love for the UW community, and I look forward to contributing to its growth and progress by championing diversity, equity, and inclusion as a part of the Recent-Grad Council.”

Helen Yuan ’21

Helen Yuan ’21
Pronouns:
She/Her
Hometown: Wilmington, DE
Current Town: New York City, NY
Majors at the UW: Consumer Behavior and Marketplace Studies
Activities at the UW: Alpha Xi Delta Sorority, Mu Kappa Tau Marketing Fraternity, UW Advertising Club, Student Leadership Program
Current Job/Industry: Consulting, Innovation Strategy

“UW–Madison’s electric school spirit, hard-working culture, and uplifting campus environment are differentiating factors that separate the Badger experience and what initially drew me to the university. I am excited to join RGC to elevate these factors in the postgrad community and continue to build touchpoints where alumni can connect, learn, and grow together. Through RGC, I hope to meet other like-minded young professionals across diverse industries to develop my skills as a leader and give back to the Badger community, which has taught me so much!”

Huaxia Zhou ’19

Huaxia Zhou ’19
Pronouns:
He/Him
Hometown: Shanghai, China
Current Town: Evanston, IL
Major at the UW: Physics
Activities at the UW: Asian Musical Instruments Community, UW–Madison Concert Band, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers UW–Madison Student Chapter, Madzine, UW–Madison Physics Club, Yuan-Shan Study Society
Current Studies: PhD Candidate at Northwestern University

“Being part of the Recent-Grad Council provides me the exclusive opportunity to connect to Badgers worldwide. As a proud Badger, I’m eager to collaborate with fellow alumni in practicing the values and knowledge we acquired at UW–Madison to contribute beyond the boundaries of the classroom.”

Past Council Members

Happy Member Appreciation Month, WAA members! Thank you for being a part of this Badger community. Be sure to take advantage of special perks all April long. Not a member? Join today.