Meet the Bystander Trainers
Bystander Education Trainers teach their peers about the importance of speaking out and standing up to prevent sexual violence from occuring. They are part of a social movement that seeks to create a change in campus culture, and form a community of people who refuse to stand by in the face of violence. Read on to learn more about our team of Bystander Trainers!
Julia Barrett, MCAS ‘19, is from Lansing, New York, and is an International Studies major, concentrating in Ethics and International Social Justice - Economic and Social Development, minoring in Foundation in Education. She has been a member of the AHANA+ Leadership Council (ALC) for the last three years. Julia has an incredibly love for her job at the Women’s Center and has a special interest in intersectional feminism, LGBTQ+ rights, gender equality, and sexual assault on campus. She is excited to be working on Bystander for the second year in a row, and is incredibly passionate about empowering and educating the BC community on how to prevent sexual violence. In her free time, Julia likes to read, attempt to kickbox, play her problems away on her ukulele, and sometimes interact with other humans.
Maithri Harve, MCAS '19, is from Ashland, MA, and is double majoring in Computer Science and Communications (and really wishes she could fit a women & gender studies minor into her schedule). She is the co-president of the Boston College chapter of Girls Who Code, a national organization dedicated to empowering girls by teaching them how to code. She is super excited to return to the Women's Center for her senior year to continue to empowering and educating the BC community! Maithri is extremely passionate about intersectional feminism, starting effective conversation about sexual assault on campus, and being a good ally. In her free time, she enjoys telling herself that she'll build an app some day, watching (and crying over) hockey and football, and drinking way too much iced coffee.
Eliza Manriquez, MCAS ’20, is a sociology major with plans of going to law school. She is from Orlando, Florida and therefore loves Disney World. She is really excited to become a Bystander trainer in order to promote awareness about sexual assault and the importance of intersectionality in these discussions. Eliza also has an amazing service dog by her side at all times who she loves to travel and explore with.
Christina Cistulli, MCAS ’19, is from Dallas, Texas. She is majoring in Sociology. In addition to the Bystander Intervention Program, she is in Army ROTC, and hopes to become a teacher after her time in the service. She is also the President of BC Students for Soldiers club and loves playing intramural soccer. Christina is specifically interested in women empowerment, gender equality, and combatting sexual assault and harassment both on campus and in the military. She believes that continuing the open dialogue on campus about these prevalent issues will allow students to feel safer to speak out. She is very excited for her first year on the Bystander team. Christina enjoys going to concerts, watching vine compilations, and trying to find the best strawberry milkshake in the country.
Hannah McCarthy, MCAS ‘19, is from Westchester, New York. She is currently pursuing a major in Psychology and a minor in Women’s and Gender Studies. Hannah is passionate about helping people understand more about sexual assault and making people feel safer and more educated in their everyday lives. In addition to joining the Bystander team, Hannah is a student assistant at the Social Work Library, a CLC leader, and is trying to learn how to knit with BC STITCH.
Jenny Byun, CSON '19, is from Long Island, New York. She studies Nursing with a minor in English. She is an active advocate against sexual violence and domestic abuse, and is also concerned with problematic portrayals of women in media. She hopes for increased awareness of the widespread yet concealed numbers of sexual assault survivors and believes that everyone has the right to feel safe. In her free time, Jenny composes songs on her piano and enjoys writing poetry. She is also a leader at BC Cornerstone Church on campus.
Meghan Dougherty, MCAS ’19, is from Trumbull, Connecticut. She is majoring in English and Economics with a minor in Philosophy. In addition to being a Bystander Advocate, she is secretary of the Equestrian Team and works at the Career Center and the Center for Corporate Citizenship. Returning from a year studying Irish literature in Dublin, Meghan is excited to join the Bystander Advocacy Team to promote awareness and dialogue around issues of sexual violence and gender equality on campus. In her spare time, she loves reading, crafting, and exploring the bookstores of Boston.
Maddy Karsten, MCAS ’19, is from Grand Rapids, Michigan. Maddy is an International Studies Major, a Hispanic Studies Minor and on a Pre-Medical track. She has a dog and is the middle child of three. On campus she is also involved in UGBC working in the Mental Health Committee, and she volunteers at a local hospital. Maddy is excited to be a part of Bystander this year because she believes that sexual assault on college campuses is such a huge problem all over the country right now, and she is hoping she can change that here at BC!
Alicia Clow, MCAS '19, is from Tokyo, Japan. She is an International Studies major with a concentration in Ethics & International Social Justice. Alicia's first step into getting involved with gender equality and social justice was through a club she founded in high school called Students Advocating Gender Equality (SAGE). At her university she transferred from, she was an Equity Center Educator that did Escalation Workshops and supported other equity-related clubs on campus. Currently, she is also the secretary for the Middle East and Islamic Studies Student Association. Alicia loves to go to concerts, try new cafes and restaurants, people watch, or to stay in and watch a documentary or to write. As a transfer student, she is very excited to get more involved at BC, and to meet more people who share the same passion for gender equality and social justice as her.
Erin Lyons, MCAS '19, is from Manhasset, New York. She is currently pursuing a Political Science and History double major, with a minor in Faith, Peace and Justice concentrating in Human Ethics. Erin is very dedicated to breaking down negative stigmas, and encouraging conversations about both sexual violence and mental health. Erin is a 4Boston volunteer, where she works at Women's Lunch Place, an all-women's homeless shelter in Boston. She is also a member of BC's chapter of To Write Love on Her Arms, where she leads discussions pertaining to mental health with BC freshman. Erin loves reading, drinking coffee, eating (Long Island) bagels, talking about her homeless friends and making terrible jokes.
Lucy Kaneb, MCAS ’19, is a Communication major and Women's & Gender Studies minor. She is from Cambridge, MA and is a lifelong Boston sports fan who hopes to pursue a career in broadcast journalism. Having attended all-girls school from 6th-12th grade, Lucy became passionate about issues like gender inequality, LGBT rights, and violence against women early on, and got involved with the Women’s Center at BC in order to channel her concern into action. As a Bystander Trainer, Lucy hopes to spread awareness about important topics like sexual assault prevention and consent so that BC can be a leader in ending the stigma and inaction surrounding these issues.
Lizzy Barrett, MCAS '19, is from Ithaca, NY. She is a Communication major and hopes to pursue a life filled with photography, videography, activism, and travel (and hopefully a job that combines it all). She spent her junior spring semester traveling around Australia and New Zealand, hiking every mountain and swimming in practically every glacial lake and beach she drove past. She loves storytelling and documenting, anything to do with the outdoors, and spending time with the amazing people she is lucky to call her friends. Liz has always been incredibly passionate about combating sexual assault, is excited to start channeling that passion into constructive action in the BC community.
Michaela Chipman, MCAS ‘19, is a Political Science and Biology double major and Medical Humanities minor from Norfolk, MA. She is passionate about reducing the stigma surrounding feminism and empowering women, and is honored to be a member of the Bystander Team. Michaela is also a member of the BC Sharps A Cappella group, the BC Women’s Rugby Team, and the Bellarmine Law Society. When she’s not at a meeting or working in the Dean of Students Office, you can find her reading a book in the Stokes Honors Library or running around Boston taking pictures.
Kristina Major, MCAS ’19, is an English and Communication Double Major with a History Minor from Wakefield, Massachusetts. Kristina is a member of the Dance Organization of Boston College (DOBC) and plays clarinet in the University Wind Ensemble. She is so excited to be returning for her third year with Bystander Intervention to spread awareness about sexual assault on campus, and participate in the many important dialogues that will follow. Kristina is passionate about empowering people of all genders, sexualities, races, ethnicities, and abilities in order to help overcome erasure and structural oppression. In her free time, she is a Marketing Intern at Urbanity Dance, and enjoys editing her friends’ papers, choreographing in her head to every song on Spotify, drinking iced coffee in the winter, and exploring Boston with her friends.
Tristan Pulver, MCAS '19, is from San Francisco, California. He is currently pursuing a Political Science and Economics double major. Tristan is fascinated by the topics of ethics, the environment and International relations. After school Tristan would like to pursue a career in Environmental, Social, and Governmental development investment. Tristan loves to travel, and spent his fall junior semester in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. On campus you can find him with friends, in the library, probably talking about abroad. Tristan has always been extremely passionate about combating sexual assault and aiding those who are harmed by it. He is excited to focus his passion into fostering constructive change.
Trish Rodican, CSOM '19, is from Norwalk, Connecticut. She is pre-law and is concentrating in Economics with a minor in Philosophy. In addition to the Bystander Intervention program, she is a proud member of WZBC and Arrupe. Trish is thrilled to have the opportunity to educate others, raise awareness, and expand the conversation about sexual assault on campus as a Bystander trainer. In her spare time, she loves to listen to music, play bass and guitar, go to concerts, wander museums, read, write poetry, take long walks, and explore new places.
Sarah L Mandelblatt, MCAS ’19, is from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She is currently studying English with a minor in biology and a concentration in creative writing. When she’s not in class, Sarah can be found working in the Law Library or in Stokes, where she interns for BC’s professional literary Journal, Post Road. She’s excited to join the Bystander team this year and is passionate about taking an intersectional approach to feminism and women's issues. In her free time, Sarah enjoys reading, writing, painting, baking bread, and pointing out to her roommates why Pittsburgh sports teams are obviously superior to New England ones.
Katie Genirs, LSOE '20, is from Warren, New Jersey. She is pursuing a double major in Applied Psychology and Communication. Katie is passionate about women's issues and gender equality, and is excited for her first year as a member of the Bystander team to raise awareness of sexual assault on campus. In addition to being a Bystander trainer, Katie is the Assistant Photo Editor of The Heights and a member of BC Club Equestrian! When she's not taking photos or riding horses, she can be found watching movies or catching up on sleep.
Anna Leveroni, MCAS '20, is from Madison, Connecticut. She is pursuing an International Studies major with a concentration in Economics, with a particular interest in development economics. In addition to the Bystander program, Anna is a member of the BC Marching Band and REACT. She is passionate about empowering women and very excited to speak to students about preventing sexual assault. Anna spends her time enjoying good food and hanging out with her dog.
Chris Ferrari, MCAS ’20, is a Political Science and Communication double major from Tulsa, Oklahoma. Chris is a member and captain of Sexual Chocolate, Boston College’s all male step team. He is also a supporter for Lean on Me, which is a emotional support hotline for students struggling in any aspect of their lives, whether it be academic or emotional stress. Chris is excited to be working with Bystander Intervention in an effort to help make Boston College a safer environment for people of all genders, races, and sexualities. Chris loves meeting new people and is always happy to hang out at the Chocolate Bar with his friends. You can find him practicing for upcoming shows, hanging out with friends, or writing essays!
Sydney Koehler, MCAS ’20, is from Minneapolis, Minnesota. She is pre-law, with a double-major in Political Science and English and a minor in Women’s and Gender Studies. She’s studying abroad this spring at the University of Amsterdam! Aside from Bystander, Sydney is also a member of the University Chorale. She loves traveling, hiking, exploring all that Boston has to offer, and humoring people with her Minnesotan accent. Sydney is passionate about gender equality and female empowerment, so she’s extremely excited to continue her work with the Bystander team this year!
Juan Lones, CSOM '20, is from Bronx, NY, and is majoring in Finance and hopes to one day get his MBA. He is a member of Boston College's B.E.A.T.S a capella group, and works at Campus Ministry. Juan is passionate about social justice and intersectionality. He is excited be a part of the Bystander community and hopes to facilitate conversation about feminism, gender equality, and sexual assault prevention on campus. Juan enjoys many different sports and can be found playing basketball at the Plex instead of studying.
Nicola Roux, MCAS '20, is from Vienna, VA (a suburb of Washington, D.C.) and is a Psychology BS major on a premed track with minors in French and Medical Humanities. Nicola is passionate about bringing awareness to and ending sexual violence and rape on college campuses and beyond and hopes to be able to address some of the stigma that surrounds these issues in her role as a Bystander trainer. She is looking forward to facilitating better conversations with her friends and peers about sexual assault and consent. Nicola hopes to go on to medical school and become an OBGYN so that she can continue to focus on issues predominantly affecting women. In addition to Bystander, Nicola is involved in GlobeMed, Project Sunshine, BC Club Equestrian, and works as a research assistant in a neuroscience lab! Nicola is: a morning person, a determined but slow runner, a frequent petter of dogs, a lover of good books, and a brunch enthusiast.
Amanda Ilaria, CSON ’20, is a Nursing major, Philosophy minor from Zionsville, Indiana. She hopes to eventually pursue a career in nursing and public health. She is very excited to be a part of the Bystander Intervention program, working to help educate and empower the Boston College community. She is passionate about reducing the stigmas surrounding feminism and creating a culture of equality and open dialogue. In addition to being a Bystander Trainer, Amanda is involved with 4Boston, GlobeMed, the Massachusetts Student Nursing Association Board of Directors, and works in the Philosophy Department. In her free time, she enjoys reading, exploring Boston, hiking, and spending time with friends
Noah Jussila, MCAS '20, is from West Greenwich, Rhode Island. He is majoring in mathematics and economics, and wants to pursue a PhD in economics and go into academia. Being raised by a single mother instilled within Noah the importance of treating women with respect, and inspired him to become a Bystander Trainer. He is excited to bring awareness to how sexual assault affects those of all races and socioeconomic backgrounds. Along with participating in the Bystander Intervention Program, Noah is a member of the Shaw Leadership Program, participates in the McNair Scholars Program, and conducts research in the economics department. On any given day, Noah can be found in a booth in Lower doing schoolwork and listening to Radiohead, or practicing self care through sleep and exercise.
Erin McHugh, MCAS '20 is a sophomore from Morristown, New Jersey. She is majoring in biology in addition to minoring in history. Erin has always been passionate about gender equality, open discussion about sexual assault on campus, and female empowerment. She is excited to be a bystander trainer this year and will also be volunteering through PULSE and attending an Arrupe service trip this winter. In her free time, she enjoys reading, going to the beach and searching for the best slice of pizza.
Samantha Ricci, MCAS’20, is from Waltham, Massachusetts. She is pre law and currently pursuing a History major and Medical Humanities minor. She is passionate in ensuring that every person is treated as a human being. She is very excited to join the Bystander team and to continue to participate in and facilitate conversations about sexual assault and campus sexual violence. In her free time, Samantha enjoys reading everything, dancing, trying to be funny, and continuously demolishing the patriarchy.
Alexis Sabbaghian, MCAS ’20, is from Lafayette, Louisiana. She is majoring in Economics an intended minor in Mathematics or French. In addition to Bystander, Alexis participated in the Catalyst Program this past summer, and will be the Director of Outreach in the Communications division of Boston College’s Undergraduate Government this year. She is incredibly excited to be a part of Bystander this year, and remains passionate about facilitating conversations surrounding consent, hook-up culture, gender empowerment. In her spare time, Alexis enjoys surfing & paddle boarding, visiting art museums, and volunteering at animal shelters.
Caroline Keil, LSOE ‘20, is an Applied Psychology & Human Development and Communications double major. From the North Fork of Long Island, NY Caroline enjoys all things beach related, and runs a youth sailing program during the summer. Caroline is very passionate about preventing sexual assault on campus and is interested in women's health issues, body positivity, and the stigmas surrounding feminism. During her first two years at BC, Caroline has become very involved with several service programs, the Student Admission Program and Arts Council and dances for the Golden Eagles Dance Team.
Ellen Kang, MCAS '20, is a Psychology major from Clarksburg, Maryland. She is passionate about promoting equality and deeply cares about social issues regarding race, gender, and socioeconomics. Ellen joined Bystander Intervention in hopes of breaking the stigma attached to victims of sexual assault and the psychological effects that often result from these traumatic events. She hopes to convey a message of not only self-defense against sexual predators, but also the overall prevention and elimination of sexual assault on BC's campus. In addition to being a Bystander Trainer, Ellen is also involved in Ecopledge and UGBC's Environmental Caucus. She enjoys reading, watching movies, hiking, and binging drinking tea.
Grace Mitchell, MCAS ’20, is from Barrington, IL but now lives in Maine where she works as a licensed kayaking guide during the summer. She is double majoring in economics and international studies. Before beginning at BC she took a gap year to study Mandarin Chinese in a local Chinese high school. Grace enjoys hiking, running, studying foreign languages, and reading in her free time. She is honored to have the opportunity to make a meaningful impact on our campus with the Bystander team.
Eilidh Currie, MCAS ’20, is from North Bend, Washington. She is studying political science and sociology and hopes to establish a career in policymaking. Eilidh is passionate about women’s issues and is dedicated to opening an important dialogue about sexual assault on campus. She is looking forward to working with the Bystander team to make BC a safer place by spreading awareness about the issues surrounding sexual assault and consent. In her free time, Eilidh enjoys running, watching Netflix, and planning elaborate trips around the world she may never be able to afford.
Jennifer Cruz-Rincón, MCAS '2,0 is from Mayagüez, Puerto Rico and was raised in Waterbury, Connecticut from a very young age. She views herself as a warrior for social justice and is excited to join the Bystander Program family. Also passionate about queer issues and the latinx community, she is determined to expose all to the complexity and importance of intersectionality, especially within modern society. Impassioned by perceiving beauty in the struggle, she looks forward to emulating servant leadership and walking with marginalized communities, especially survivors of domestic violence, as a social worker.
Alexia Kovatsis, LSOE '21, is from Natick, Massachusetts. She is an Elementary Education and Applied Psychology & Human Development double major with minors in Special Education and Teaching English Language Learners. In addition to the Bystander Intervention Program, she is on the executive board for Students for Education Reform, a TA at the Campus School, and a Health Coach. She is passionate about promoting intersectionality and fighting sexual assault, gender inequalities, and social stigmas. Alexia is excited to be working with a marvelous team of students to strive towards creating a safer campus for everyone at Boston College. In her spare time, Alexia loves running, reading, listening to NPR, and currently she is teaching herself code.
Yolanda Okundaye, MCAS '21, is a Biology major from Boston, Massachusetts. She was born and raised in Benin city, Edo State, Nigeria but relocated to the States at the age of 9. Being from a part of the world that is behind on equal rights for all people from different spectrums, she is deeply passionate about advocating for those without a voice. She was inspired to join Bystander as an outlet to aid navigating sexual violence within the Black community at Boston College. She also aspires to promote an end to and awareness of sexual violence of women and people identifying as LGBTQ+ in Black communities worldwide. In addition to Bystander, she is an RA on Newton and a Big Sister in BC Bigs Franklin Field campus based mentoring program.
Katie Zona, MCAS ’21, is from Medfield, Massachusetts. She is currently majoring in Communication and minoring in Applied Psychology & Human Development. In addition to joining the Bystander Intervention program, Katie is the treasurer of R.E.A.C.T, a group working to raise awareness on campus about human and labor trafficking. Katie also teaches women self defense alongside the campus police as a certified R.A.D. instructor. Katie is a 4Boston volunteer where she works at St. Francis House, a homeless shelter for men and women in Boston. In her free time she loves spending time in Cape Cod and enjoys all things outdoors. As a Bystander trainer, Katie hopes to raise awareness about sexual assault on campus and the crucial role students play in keeping each other safe.
Diane Reardon, LSOE ‘21, is from Milford Massachusetts. She is an Applied Psychology and Human Development major with a minor in Women and Gender Studies. In addition to Bystander Intervention she is involved in undergraduate faculty research, Appalachian Volunteers, and CLC. Diane is also the Vice President of STITCH, BC’s knitting club (yes BC has a knitting club). She is passionate about women and gender issues and looks forward to create a dialogue with her other students. She feels it is crucial to educate others about consent and sexual assault on BC’s campus. In her free time Diane enjoys doing crafts, knitting, and advocating for the fashion of Crocs.
Emma Kane, MCAS '21, is from Minneapolis, Minnesota. She is double majoring in Political Science and Sociology. She is interested in understanding systems of privilege and marginalization to work towards equality. Emma is excited to join the Bystander team and encourage sexual agency at BC and beyond. In her free time, she enjoys painting, reading, and various outdoor activities.
Jenna Hope Rosenthal, LSOE ‘21, is from Pembroke Pines, Florida. She is a sophomore majoring in Applied Psychology and Human Development, with a minor in Finance. She enjoys writing, podcasting, exercising, binging Netflix mini-series, UberEats-ing and spending time with people she loves. She wanted to become a Bystander Trainer because she believes in Bystander’s mission to empower and inform the Boston College student body on how to stand up and speak out.
Cassie Gross, MCAS ’21, is from Eden Prairie, Minnesota. She is pursuing an International Studies major with a concentration in Cooperation and Conflict and a minor in History. After completing her undergrad, she plans to pursue a law degree. She is looking forward to becoming a Bystander Trainer this year so that she can play an active role in facilitating conversations surrounding sexual assault both on and off campus, as well as continue to learn about this difficult subject. In addition, she is extremely passionate about empowering women to believe in themselves and to become role models to the little girls who will follow in their footsteps. During her freshman year, Cassie enjoyed being a member of the Student Admissions Program and volunteering with APPA and is excited to continue to explore the many groups BC has to offer. When she has free time, you’ll most likely find her spending time with friends, creating new Spotify playlists, or watching Grey’s Anatomy.
Sankari Nadanapathan, LSOE '21, is from Old Tappan, New Jersey. She is currently majoring in Applied Psychology and Human Development. Sankari has always been passionate about women empowerment and gender equality, so she is also considering a minor in Women's and Gender Studies. She is looking forward to being a Bystander trainer because sexual assault and harassment are prevalent issues that everyone needs to be educated about. In addition to joining the Bystander team, Sankari is a member of Climate Justice, hoping to create not only a safer BC campus but also a healthier planet. In her free time, Sankari enjoys baking, watching horror movies, and traveling with family and friends.
Lia Frankis, CSOM '21, is from Manhasset, New York. She is majoring in finance, accounting, and communications. In addition to the Bystander Program, she is involved in the Hellenic Society, BCTV, the Student Admissions Program, and Women in Business. She is extremely excited to join the Bystander team and encourage the dialogues surrounding sexual violence. Lia also enjoys cheering on the NY Islanders and Yankees, walks to Dunkin', playing tennis, and late nights in Bapst!