The goals of the Dean's Student Advisory Board are (1) To provide guidance directly to the dean of social sciences and other designated faculty and staff as to the endeavors of the School of Social Sciences and associated undergraduate programming; (2) To serve as ambassadors of the residential colleges by communicating to the dean and inform college members on new initiatives and to gather feedback; (3) When warranted, assist in arranging events and platforms for Dean Merlo to directly engage with the undergraduate student body.
Jordan Pflum – (’20) Mathematical Economic Analysis and Statistics
Jordan Pflum is a senior from Dallas, TX, pursuing a double major in Mathematical Economic Analysis and Statistics as well a minor in Financial Computation and Modeling. This is his second year on the Student Advisory Board and is very excited to continue to facilitate discussions between Social Science students and the faculty as well as promote the many tools the School of Social Sciences offers the student body.
Connor Rothschild – (’21) SOPA, POLI, Sociology
Connor Rothschild is a junior from Springfield, Missouri majoring in Social Policy Analysis, Political Science, and Sociology. He is interested in attending graduate school and eventually entering academia. The School of Social Sciences has helped equip him with the tools necessary to pursue such aspirations. At Rice, Connor is interested in undergraduate research and incorporating data into the social sciences.
Elizabeth Martin is a freshman from Houston, Texas. She is planning on majoring in Sport Management with a concentration in Sports Law. Elizabeth plans to pursue her JD/MBA following her time at Rice. While on the board, she hopes to engage with other students in the School of Social Sciences and advance the school’s mission.
Riley Huo is a junior from Qingdao, China majoring in MathEcon and Philosophy. Riley is passionate about promoting the School’s resources through connecting the students with undergrad research opportunities. This is her first year on the Student Advisory Board.
Franklin Estein is a sophomore from Orlando, FL pursuing a double major in Mathematical Economic Analysis and Political Science. He is currently assisting with research at the Baker Institute for Public Policy and working as an intern at Musket Corporation. His interests include international economic affairs, foreign policy, and financial markets. Through the School of Social Sciences, he seeks to provide students with the framework to analyze complex global phenomena from a wide range of perspectives.
Elliot Stahr is a rising junior from Irvine, California pursuing a major in Psychology with a minor in Politics, Law, and Social Thought. Elliot has engaged with the Social Sciences at Rice through his involvement in Psychology research and serving as president of Rice's chapter of Psi Chi, the international honor society for Psychology majors. He is grateful for the opportunity to work with the Social Sciences Student Advisory Board in order to represent student interests and ensure an inclusive and fulfilling experience for all.
Sofia Opel is a junior from New Orleans, Louisiana, majoring in Political Science and Social Policy Analysis. While at Rice, she is interested in undergraduate research and engaging firsthand with both the Rice and Houston community. Readied with the tools and experience the School of Social Sciences provides, she plans to attend graduate school and pursue policy work in the future.
Rajpal S. Bal
Rajpal Bal is a freshman at McMurtry College who is currently on track to double major in Social Policy Analysis and Mathematical Economic Analysis with a Minor in Business. Rajpal’s internal drive is to help others, and being on the SSSAB allows him to improve his department further its intellectual curiosity and desire to be the best department that it can be. Rajpal wants to help empower Social Science Students and Faculty across a wide range of academic disciplines and goals.
Jennifer Lee is a senior from Houston, TX studying psychology with a minor in business and a certificate in Civic Leadership. Through the Social Science Gateway Consulting Practicum, she partnered with the Greater Houston Partnership to understand and address the career skills gap in Houston. The practicum has helped her clarify her career plans and provided her with the opportunity to network with leaders in the Houston community. As a member of the Social Science Advisory Board, Jennifer is excited to serve as an ambassador and resource for students. She looks forward to ensuring that the School of Social Science will continue to provide enriching academic experiences for its students.
Ahmed Alhroob is a junior from Amman, Jordan majoring in Psychology and Political Science. This is Ahmed’s second year serving on the Social Sciences Student Advisory Board; he is excited to connect the Rice student body with the School of Social Sciences and introduce them to the variety of opportunities within their reach.
Allison Yelvington is a senior from Rosenberg, TX studying sociology with a minor in environmental studies. On campus, she works as as an intern for the Rice Administrative Center for Sustainability and Energy Management and co-leads the Rice Eco-Rep program. She is also a research assistant working with Drs. Elliot and Loughran in the Sociology Department. Following graduation, Allison will return to Deloitte Consulting as an Analyst in the Human Capital, Talent & Organization Performance Competency Group.
Xavier Elizondo is a freshman from Corpus Christi, Texas. He is majoring in Linguistics and philosophy. While at Rice, he hopes to further his interests in the field of law with a focus in forensic linguistics. He is currently volunteering with the Houston and Community Development Department and is particular interested in Housing policy. This is his first year on the Student Advisory Board and he is excited to be a mediator between his residential college and the School of Social Sciences.
Kyla Barnwell is a junior from Atlanta, Georgia majoring in Cognitive Sciences. She plans to use her time at Rice to do undergraduate research and has a special interest in public and community health. She plans to attend law school after graduation. During her second year as a board member, she hopes she can serve as an ambassador and a resource to students within the Social Sciences to ensure a well balanced and enriching academic experience.
Alina Zhu is a sophomore from Shanghai, China currently studying Economics and Social Policy Analysis with a pre-law track. She’s a member of the George R. Brown Forensics Society, editor for the Rice Examiner, and a freelance writer for the Thresher. She wanted to join the board in order to play a larger role in promoting a passion for the social sciences within her peers. She’s excited to provide and contribute to more academically enriching experiences for her and her peers in the School of Social Sciences.
Saniya Gayake is a junior from Plano, Texas majoring in Anthropology with aspirations of attending medical school. Saniya hopes to continue the growth and promotion of the Social Sciences whether it is in the form of research, opportunities, programs, academics or events. This is Saniya’s second year on the Social Sciences Student Advisory Board, and she hopes to use her position to provide guidance and feedback to the School, while communicating back to the student body.
Charlie Dwight is a sophomore from Cincinnati, Ohio majoring in Mathematical Economic Analysis and Philosophy. He currently engages with the School of Social Sciences by attending Baker Institute events and conducting economic research. In his first year on the Student Advisory Board, he is excited to discover ways to help students engage with such opportunities from the moment they arrive at Rice. He plans to attend graduate school for either Public Policy or Economics.