Philadelphia University Honors Institute at Thomas Jefferson University

Alumni Narratives

What's next for the Honors Class of 2017?

Monika Adeni – Physician Assistant Studies
Monica is in her first year of graduate school in the Physician Assistant Studies program at Jefferson – East Falls. Monica won the Program’s Academic Achievement Award for her stellar performance and peer leadership.

Maria Balestino – Fashion Design
Maria works as a Technical Design Coordinator for Lilly Pulitzer in the Philadelphia metro area. As a student, Maria won industry awards for her designs and worked summers at Oscar de la Renta and Madewell in New York City.

Basimah Beyah – Professional Communication
Basimah works for Independence Blue Cross in Customer Service in Philadelphia. During her time as a student, she worked in the library and as a Communications Associate with Build-a-Bridge International. Basimah, a Philadelphia native, also speaks Arabic.

Naomi Milrod – Fashion Merchandising and Management
Naomi is a graduate assistant in the Fashion Merchandising & Management program at Jefferson – East Falls campus, while working as assistant store manager at Gilbert & Evans boutique in Ardmore, PA. As an undergraduate, Naomi gained experience as a graphic content contributor, product development intern, and in brand marketing with various companies.

Louise Sandstrom – Industrial Design
Currently living in the greater NYC area, Louise is a Junior Designer for Display Designs. Louise worked on campus as lead Rambassador, public relations coordinator for the student-run Tandem Design Conference, and as a summer intern with the Lyn Godley Design Studio. Louise, an international student from Sweden, speaks 3 languages and placed first in the Virginia Jackson Design Competition – Jaquard category.

Brian Wise – Architecture
Brian works as an architectural designer with Wulff Architects, Inc. in the Philadelphia area. During his fifth year, Brian was a finalist for the Stewardson Memorial Fellowship in Architecture. Brian is fluent in German.

Alumni Narratives

Tyler Fleming '12 entered Honors as a freshman. He was an early standout for his curiosity and discipline. In addition to seeking out opportunities to serve as a peer tutor and teaching assistant, Tyler presented his research at several conferences, co-authored an article with a faculty member, and studied abroad in Australia. Upon graduation, the New York native taught in Vietnam on a Fulbright fellowship. Tyler then enrolled in Touro University of Osteopathic Medicine where he continues to distinguish himself by winning an Albert Schweitzer Award. Tyler is due to graduate medical school in 2018.

Elizabeth "Libby" Nichols '14 transferred to Jefferson - East Falls as a sophomore. The Maryland native found her intellectual home here where she also excelled as a student athlete on the women’s lacrosse team. During her senior year, Libby won the inaugural campus Eileen Martinson award to conduct a transdisciplinary study with engineering students. Libby, now a student at University of Maryland School of Medicine, is also the winner of a Fulbright research fellowship to Germany.

Maria Balestino ’17 graduated from Honors with her degree in Fashion Design. As a student, Maria won industry awards for her designs and worked summers at Oscar de la Renta and Madewell in New York City. Maria now works as a Technical Design Coordinator for Lilly Pulitzer in the Philadelphia metro area.

Claire Domogala '19 entered Honors as a freshman in the 5-year Physician Assistant program. She became vice president of the Honor Student Association sophomore year. Claire also went on 3 Global Medical Brigades trips to provide medicine to underserved communities in Honduras. She completed a semester long study abroad in Costa Rica and received minors in Medical Spanish and Childhood Trauma Studies. Immediately after graduation, Claire returned to taking graduate classes for the PA program. She starts clinical rotations in July and is on track to graduate PA school in August 2020.

Alumni Spotlight

Maya Philips, Class of 2017
Mount Holly, NJ

College Highlights

  • Making lifelong friendships with people of all majors and fields.
  • Honors giving us the opportunity to get out of the classroom to learn and enjoy a movie at the same time!
  • Honors service trip to NYC, staying in a hostel and making others happy.