First-Year Counselors

We are Pierson’s First-Year Counselors (or FroCos)! Each First-year is assigned to one of us before the year begins – we are the seniors who live near you and are a source of information and assistance throughout the year. We can offer suggestions about your curricular and extracurricular choices, take an interest in your concerns, and give firsthand advice on how best to use the academic and other resources of Pierson and of Yale. 

Gabriel Betancur

Gabriel was born in Medellín, Colombia and lived there for the first twelve years of his life before moving to Woodbridge, Connecticut. He has a younger sister and loves his family like nothing else in the world. He is a Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology major and hopes to attend medical school after college to become a pediatric endocrinologist. This summer, he will be conducting research at the Yale medical school, working on how to use molecular markers as a way to diagnose Type 1 Diabetes. In past summers, Gabriel has worked as a summer camp counselor as well as a ball person coordinator for the Connecticut Open tennis tournament hosted at Yale every August. Gabriel loves sports, especially tennis and basketball, and is an intramural secretary for Pierson as well as a member of the club tennis team. On campus, he is also involved as a Spanish interpreter at the HAVEN free clinic, Yale’s student-run medical clinic for uninsured residents of the greater New Haven area.

In his free time, Gabriel enjoys playing pick-up basketball at the Payne Whitney gym and beating his suitemates at FIFA, 2K, and Super Smash Bros. He is extremely excited to be a Pierson Froco and to get to know the class of 2022!

Kelsang Dolma

Kelsang Dolma was born and raised in Mundgod, a Tibetan refugee colony in India, before moving to Richfield, Minnesota. She majors in Ethnicity, Race, and Migration with a concentration in human rights. During her college summers, Kelsang has traveled to Nepal, India, Croatia, Bosnia, and Montenegro! She has studied abroad twice, interned for the Tibetan government and will be interning at the Environmental Law & Policy Center over this summer.

Other than traveling on the Yale dime, Kelsang loves to be involved on campus in various student organizations; she has been involved in The Lowenstein Project, Yale Refugee Project, Yale Hunger and Homeless Action Project Book Exchange, Minnesota Club, Peer Wellness Champion, the Pierson Buttery, and Pierson College Council. In addition, Kelsang founded the Himalayan Students Association at Yale her freshmen year. Aside from schoolwork, Kelsang enjoys making memes for the Yale Memes for Special Snowflake Teens Facebook group, jamming out at the Radio House, applying face masks, attending guest speaker events, and supporting her beloved friends.

Tiffany Fomby

Tiffany is a Theater Studies major from Georgia who enjoys using creativity to inspire others. On campus she has served on the Executive Board of the Yale Dramatic Association as its Outreach Coordinator, helping to facilitate the relationship between theater and the Yale-New Haven Community. She’s also served as Music Director for Living Water, an a cappella group. As you may have guessed, Tiffany’s very involved in the theater community on campus, performing in various plays and musicals throughout the year. She’s also a member of  Chi Alpha Christian Fellowship and loves to talk about faith. Her past summers have seen her in Shanghai, China developing educational programming and most recently Paris, France studying French. Tiffany also works at the Yale Law School Library 

In her free time not spent rehearsing or studying, Tiffany enjoys reading, photography, eating good food, rewatching vine compilations, and admiring all forms of art. She’s so excited to welcome the Class of 2022!!

Valentina Guerrero

Valentina grew up in sunny Orlando, Florida. She is the proud older sister to two wonderful brothers. Called to a life of public service, Valentina studies racial inequality at Yale as an American Studies major pursuing a concentration in Politics & American Communities. On campus, she connects with her interests through the Women in Government Fellowship, the Yale Institution for Social and Policy Studies, and Yale Law School’s Worker and Immigrant Rights Advocacy Clinic where she works as a legal interpreter. Service is perhaps the most central component to her Yale experience. Valentina organizes Pierson service outreach through Dwight Hall. She is also involved with faith-based communities, the Yale Farm, and La Casa. 

Valentina loves all things Pierson College. She works as a Pierson Aide and is thrilled to now serve as a FroCo! She is excited to share this special community with her first-years. Other things that thrill Valentina: vegan food, arts & crafts, poetry, and The Great British Bake Off. 

Stephen Irving

Stephen is from Bowie, Maryland and majoring in Psychology. Much of his focus with psychology has been in child development. Stephen loves working with kids and is member of Camp Kesem at Yale and happily teaches children how to swim in PWG on the weekends. When he’s not in the classroom, you can also find him playing soccer with the men’s club team, rehearsing his moves for Yale Danceworks, or out representing Pierson in different IM sports. Stephen loves languages and has always been obsessed with traveling. He’s also a huge supporter of any events where he can cheer and scream for his friends, especially Yale Softball and Gymnastics. If you’re a fan of losing, feel free to challenge him in a game of Super Smash Bros. or Mario Kart! He loves making people laugh and won’t hesitate to embarrass himself for a joke if he has to. Stephen can’t wait to welcome the Class of 2022!!!

Vicky (Yi Qing) Liu

Vicky is a Political Science and French double major from Surrey, British Columbia, Canada.  She has special academic interest in language policy and preservation.  Ask her about the humanities and social sciences at Yale; Vicky is a Directed Studies Ambassador, a Research Assistant for the Yale Grammatical Diversity Project, and part of the undergraduate advisory committee of both her majors.  She is also President of the Canadian Students Association and has served on the board of The Yale Record and Yale Model Congress.  Vicky is heavily involved with Pierson as a College Aide and formerly as its Peer Liaison from both the Asian American Cultural Center and the Office of International Students.  Her extracurricular life has ranged from YTV to the Yale Precision Marching Band to club archery to the Office of Sustainability.  Her past summers have involved research on French North America and internships in patent law, city government, and finance.  

In her free time, Vicky enjoys drawing, taking long walks, admiring art and architecture, brainstorming standup comedy routines, and reading longwinded think pieces about RPGs.  She cannot wait to welcome the Class of 2022!

Brian Matusovsky

Bri grew up on the beach in Santa Monica, California, where they gained a love for the outdoors and the planet. At some point over their life, they also developed a love for people. Bri is studying Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, and Global Health, with an interest in the ways in which humans interact with their social and physical environments. They are also pursuing a Masters of Public Health in Social and Behavioral Sciences through the Yale 5-year BS/MPH program.

Outside of classes, Bri spends their time writing and performing poetry as a member of Voke LGBTQ+ Spoken Word Group, which is their favorite community on campus. For on-campus jobs, they work as a Pierson Aide and as a Peer Wellness Champion for Pierson College and the Office of LGBTQ+ Resources, planning wellness events for the student body. They also volunteer with the Hypertension Awareness and Prevention Program at Yale (HAPPY), where they give free blood pressure screenings and health resource information to residents of New Haven. In their free time, Bri enjoys going to Yoga classes.

Bri is a first generation college student and a Questbridge Scholar, and they find constant inspiration from the hard work of other first generation college students at Yale. They are very exited to be a Froco for the class of 2022, and to pass on the Yale that they love so much. 

Alex Wang

Alex is a cognitive science major from Scotch Plains, New Jersey. (Make all the New Jersey jokes you want, he’s very used to it!) He’s interested in studying the effects of race and bias in legal decision-making, and will be doing research in the Cultural Cognition Lab in the law school this year. After graduating, he hopes to volunteer or work for a couple years before maybe going to law school. Outside of academics, Alex is an avid violinist, playing in the Yale Symphony Orchestra and in his quartet as well as taking weekly lessons. He is also involved in social activism and service on campus, serving as a member of the Asian American Studies Task Force as well as a teacher for the Chinese American History Project, which is a program that sends Yale students to a local Chinese school to teach middle and high schoolers Chinese American history. When not engaged in one of the above pursuits, you can find Alex trying new and controversial food combinations, watching TV, or reading, sometimes all at the same time!