Follow the iSchool Graduate Ambassadors on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Reddit, Weibo, and WhatsApp (Ambassadors At iSchool).
Schedule an appointment with an MSIM ambassador or MSLIS ambassador. You can also connect with the ambassadors via email.
Neha Bhujbal, MSIM student
I am from Mumbai, India. I earned my bachelor’s degree in electronics and telecommunication engineering from Mumbai University. I pursued a short stint as a business analyst at Ketto — a medical crowdfunding firm, which piqued my interest in business intelligence and analytics. I joined the iSchool because of its curriculum flexibility, perfect blend of analytics and consulting, and extensive learning opportunities at Research Park. Currently, I am working on a healthcare informatics project with a PhD student. I look forward to leveraging the power of information to create a positive social impact.
Yi Chook, MSIM student
After graduating from UIUC in 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in economics and minor in business and informatics, I worked as an account manager. My minor spurred my interested in technology and data. I want to use data to tell a story and develop strategic plans. I realized I needed a deeper analytical and technical background to implement any solutions using information drawn from data. That is why I chose this program. I can customize the curriculum to match my career interest. My hope is to have a career in business intelligence/analytics.
Angela Finochio, MSLIS student
Reading, teaching, and art are my passions. It was my daughter’s birth, and our time spent learning and creating, that inspired me to pursue my dream of becoming a children’s librarian. I completed my undergraduate degree in footwear and accessories design at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, where I currently work as a classroom assistant. My family and I live on Long Island. We frequent the beach and spend lots of time outdoors. I hope to share my experience and encourage all to realize that, with the right mindset and support, it is possible to achieve your goals.
Sarah Rebecca Gaglio, MSLIS student
Originally from Brooklyn, New York, I moved to Chicago eight years ago for graduate school. I have a bachelor’s in religion, a graduate degree in women’s studies and gender studies, and worked for six years in nonprofit fundraising and volunteer coordination. Having worked in libraries previously, I decided to pursue an MSLIS to make my way back into research libraries. I am one of the CARLI Building Diversity graduate assistants, working in libraries at the University of Illinois Chicago and Loyola University Chicago. Outside of school, I spend my time watching movies, taking long strolls in cemeteries, and playing table-top RPGs.
Jenni Diaz Garcia, MSLIS student
I chose to study here because of the program offers the freedom to explore my library interests while working with top faculty. I currently work in the Teaching, Learning, and Academic support unit of the Main Library where I help undergraduates improve their research strategies. I also help manage social media sites that bring students closer to the libraries around campus. I hope to use the skills I gain at UIUC to work at a public library outreach program for first-generation students. I studied English and Spanish at Carleton College, and am a native Spanish speaker.
Uyen Nguyen, MSLIS student
I am an international student from Vietnam. However, I finished my undergrad in Baltimore, where I majored in French transnational studies, international relations, and visual material culture. I’m interested in making information and knowledge more accessible and equitable, and how the library can be an agent for social justice. The iSchool provides bountiful academic and professional opportunities, with great resources and staff. Currently, I am also a GA in the Teaching, Learning, and Academic Support Unit for the Main Library where we collaborate with our wonderful librarians to support student success.
Precious Olalere, MSLIS student
I am an on-campus student from Nigeria. My undergraduate degree was in library and information science at the University of Ilorin in Nigeria, West Africa. I chose the iSchool because of the level of customization and flexibility for configuring your pathway. One key factor that influenced my choice of this field is my ardent love for helping people and connecting people to the information they are looking for. When I am not taking classes, you will find me balancing my graduate assistantship at the Scholarly Commons and my graduate position at the Agricultural Communications Documentation Center at the Funk Library.
Spring Olivares, MSLIS student
I am from Baltimore, Maryland, and I am a graduate assistant with the iSchool Help Desk. Before coming to Champaign, I was working on my undergraduate degree in English from Florida Gulf Coast University. I chose UIUC for the flexible coursework and access to resources in the archive concentration. I’ve always had a deep love for literature and libraries, so I wanted to combine these interests into a career. I collect antiques, write, craft, and play video games. I am excited to delve into the library field and discover what makes them integral parts of society as well as vital to human connection.
Cassidy Russell, MSLIS student
I am in my second semester in the iSchool LEEP program. I’ve moved around a lot, but currently live in Chicago where I work as a theater director, improv teacher, actor, and visual artist. I have a BFA in printmaking from the University of Notre Dame and an MFA in printmaking from Savannah College of Art and Design. I decided to pursue an MSLIS degree at the iSchool because of interests in storytelling and the stories we choose to tell, in creating artistic spaces where people feel comfortable being vulnerable, in information equity, and in literacy and language preservation.
Kirti Tyagi, MSIM student
I fell in love with data when I started working as a data analyst in the e-commerce domain. I wanted to explore the different methodologies and tools that exist so I could become a top-notch data professional. My career interests and iSchool curriculum were a perfect match. Post-graduation I am looking to be a person who will be able to discover insights, find meaningful patterns, locate opportunities for improvement, and eradicate waste in business processes.
Gabriela Vieira da Cunha Prates, MSLIS student
I am an on-campus LIS student from Brazil. I attended undergrad at UDESC and graduated in 2018 with a degree in Library Science with a certificate in Information Management. I currently hold an assistantship with the iSchool Help Desk. In my free time, I enjoy reading historical fiction, watching an endless list of TV shows, and being with my family (even if only through technology). After graduation, I hope to be able to start a project for building a library in an underserved community back at Florianópolis, Brazil.