Graduate Peer Mentors

Aspirational Graduate Peer Mentors

Peer Support


As a student, it helps to have the support and encouragement of a near peer that has experiences similar to your own. Undergraduate students that are interested in (or already are) working with faculty on original research and creative works projects can benefit from the advice the CSR Graduate Peer Mentors can offer! 


What can a Peer Mentor Do for Me?

Our Peer Mentors are available to answer your questions about the research and scholarship process. They have the experience and training to answer questions such as:

  • “What is the timeline for my research goal and how can I balance that with my other obligations? 
  • “Will I get paid to work on research, or am I eligible for a special scholarship?”
  • “How do I approach a mentor who can oversee my work and give me lab experience?”

Our mentors are also skilled in professional development as students who have been successful reaching graduate programs in their chosen field. Ask them things like:

  • “How do I even begin to write a personal statement?”
  • “What career opportunities exist if I don’t want to attend graduate school?”
  • “How do I pass the LSAT/MCAT/GRE ahh! Or, wait, do I really need to take the test?”

Meet our mentors

Ashley Degeorge

Undergraduate Degree: BS in Biomedical Science 

Graduate Program: MS in Biology - Cellular and Molecular Biology Track

Research Interests: Molecular genetics relating to neurodegenerative disease

What I can help you with:

1. Research as an undergraduate

2. Writing - research papers

3. Research design and plans

4. Graduate school applications

5. Time/stress management

Favorite activity to do outside of research: Cooking and taking my dog to wander the forest or the mountains!  


Meet with Ashley!


Brandon Collins

Undergraduate Degree: BS in Computer Science

Graduate Program: PhD Security Engineering

Research Interests: Game Theory, Multiagent Systems

What can I help you with: 

1. Research as an Undergraduate

2. Computer Science graduate school applications

3. Bioinformatics

4. Computational and Theoretical Research

Favorite activity to do outside of research and school? I enjoy racket sports like tennis, table tennis, badminton as well as hiking!

Meet with Brandon!

Colleen Mock

Undergraduate Degree: BS in Psychology, minor in Criminal Justice; MA in Clinical Psychology

Graduate Program: Clinical Psychology PhD Program, Geropsychology Specialization

Research Interests: Older Adults, Suicidal Ideation, Personality, Death Anxiety, Intrapersonal Functioning

What I can help you with:

1. Navigating being a first-generation student or having other barriers to education (SES, justice involvement, etc.)

2. Time management

3. SPSS navigation

4. Psychology graduate school admissions

5. Career and graduate school alternatives

6. Fostering professional relationships

Favorite activity to do outside of research: Engaging with nature (and thrift shopping!)

Meet with Colleen!

Kyrie Milliron

Undergraduate Degree: BS in Biochemistry, Distinction in Research 

Graduate Program: MS Biochemistry – Research Track 

Research Interests: Virology, Immunology, Biochemistry 

What I can help you with:

1. Research as an undergraduate

2. Undergraduate Research Academy (URA)

3. Writing - Personal statements, Research papers

4. Presentations - Oral and Poster

5. Mentor/Mentee Relationships

6. Work/Life Balance and Time Management 

Favorite activity to do outside of research: I love reading, going to concerts, and enjoying nature in the mountains. 


Meet with Kyrie!


Jon Sundby

Undergraduate Degree: BA in Political Science and Policy Studies

Graduate Program: MA in Clinical Psychology

Research Interests: Death Anxiety, Existential Psychology, Older Adults, Homelessness

What I can help you with:

1. Writing

2. Navigating the research process

3. Graduate school admissions

4. Research into fellowships

5. Gap year(s) planning

6. Personal statements and admission essays

7. Guidance on research mentors

8. Goal planning

Favorite activity to do outside of research: When I'm not thinking about research, I'm thinking about my next cooking "project".


Meet with Jon!


Josh Shulkin

Undergraduate Degree: BA in Psychology, minor in Political Science 

Graduate Program: M.A. in Psychological Science

Research Interests: Quantitative methods, structural equation modeling and latent factor modeling, emotions, beliefs about emotions, political psychology 

What I can help you with:

1. Writing

2. Navigating the research process

3. Research design and analytical plans

4. Statistical analyses in common programs (SPSS, R, JASP, etc.)

5. Graduate school application preparation

6. Creating and presenting poster presentations 

7. GRE preparation 

Favorite activity to do outside of research: In my rare moments of free time, I enjoy going to weekly trivia, brewing coffee with my ever-growing collection of coffee stuff, playing guitar, reading, and solving Rubik’s cubes  


Meet with Josh!


Megan Wendling

Undergraduate Degree: BA in Psychology

Graduate Program: Clinical Psychology - Trauma Track

Research Interests: PTSD, sexual assault, resilience, meaning-making (as it relates to trauma)

What I can help you with:

1. Writing

2. Goal setting

3. Scheduling management

4. Work life balance

5. Graduate school application and preparation

6. Networking

7. Qualitative/quantitative research

8. Stress management

Favorite activity to do outside of research: Outside of school and research, I love to travel, see live music, handout with friends, and try new restaurants/bars! 

Meet with Megan!


Branden Schaff CSR Program Developer

Branden Schaff, MA graduated with his master's in clinical psychology in 2023 from UCCS. Branden attended his undergraduate education at Truman State University, where he managed the Center for Applied Psychophysiology with Dr. Fred Shaffer. Working with Dr. Rachel Weiskittle, he is pursued his research interest in the treatment of older adult loneliness, especially as it pertains to minority status. Branden served as the Center for Student Research Peer Advocate Program Developer from 2022-2023 and was instrumental in establishing the Aspirational Graduate Peer Mentor Program. He is now pursuing his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at the University of Mississippi.

Now Recruiting Peer Mentors!

Want to Join the Graduate Peer Mentor Program?

The Center for Student Research is seeking to recruit graduate students from a variety of disciplines to serve as near-peer mentors for undergraduates. Students interested in research or creative works or those already involved in them will be able to request a 30-min meeting with a peer mentor to discuss different topics related to research, creative works, and graduate school pursuits. We intend for the peer mentors to serve and inspirational role models for undergraduates and provide informational and social peer support to those that contact them. Each peer mentor will receive training on mentoring best-practices including active listening, interpersonal communication, setting ground rules and trust building, and implicit bias mitigation as well as on-and off campus resources to help support their mentees.

Who can be a peer mentor?

All graduate students are welcome serve as peer mentors. The CSR will also consider advanced undergraduate students as well to serve in this role to mentor novice undergraduate students. If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a peer mentor, please contact Colleen Mock at today!