Meet the Student Leaders


Arielle Epstein

Major: Undeclarednest leaders 2

Hometown: Fairfax Station Virginia

Favorite part of NEST: meeting new people and making new friends with people who were in the same exact boat as me and discovering everything that UMW has to offer with these new friends.

Why did I want to become a student leader: I wanted to be a part of NEST and the experience as a leader and be able to lead activities and ice breakers with my group and help facilitate the experience as a whole because I had such a wonderful time.

Advice for incoming students: The best way to get yourself out there and make friends is to join clubs. There are so many to choose from and you can’t go wrong.

Fun fact: I can tap dance!


Meredith Fierro

Major/ Minor: Dignest leaders 3ital Media

Hometown: Virginia Beach, VA

What was your favorite part os NEST: I made some great friends that I’m still friends with today. I also really enjoyed the Adventure Links day, where we did team building activities and even a high ropes course.

Why did you want to be a Student Leader: I had such a great time in NEST that I wanted to give that same experience to the incoming students.

Advice for incoming students: Just be yourself and don’t be afraid to put yourself out there! Great things will come!

Fun fact: I’m a tutor in the Digital Knowledge Center.

Carmen Flores

nest leaders 7Major/Minor: International Affairs/Economics

Hometown: Fredericksburg, Va

What was your favorite part of NEST: My favorite part was making new friends so that when classes started, I had people who I could talk to. You meet some of the best people there!

Why did you want to be a Student Leader: During my time in the NEST program, the student leaders were the ones that made meeting new people and adjusting to college life easier. They were helpful in answering questions and I aspire to be like them and reach out to the upcoming Freshman.

Advice for incoming students: Step outside your comfort-zone and be weird.

​Fun fact: My spirit animal is Angus from Despicable Me :)

Emily Lowrie

nest leaders 4Major/Minor: Political Science

Hometown: La Verne, CA

What was your favorite part of NEST: Getting to meet new people and explore the area.

Why did you want to be a Student Leader: I had such a wonderful NEST experience and I hope to provide the same experience for new students.

Advice for incoming students: Be bold and pursue what you feel most passionate about.

Fun fact: My birthday is on St. Patrick’s Day!

Corrie Presland-Byrne 

nest leaders 1Major: Biology

Minor: Chemistry

Hometown: Lyme, NH

Favorite Part of NEST: The day out on the river, the weather was beautiful and tubing was so much fun as our first activity together as a program

Why did you want to be a student leader: I love taking on leadership opportunities and I had such an amazing NEST experience and I want for other students to have the same.

Advice: Be outgoing and positive about college and meeting new people, trust me, I know it’s hard to introduce yourself and make the effort to meet others but it is worth it!

Fun fact: I love to scuba dive and got licensed when i was 16!

Michayla Rice

nest leaders 8Major/Minor: Undecided

Hometown: Hampton, VA

What was your favorite part of NEST: Exploring the campus & doing the team building activities

Why did you want to be a Student Leader: I really want be a familiar face and friend to new Eagles during this transition. It was hard for me at first but NEST & its leaders personally helped me so much.

Advice for incoming students: Leave your past behind & start fresh here at MaryWash. Just be you!

Fun fact: I LOVE to dance and perform on a stage.

Noelle Thomas 

nest leaders 5Major/Minor: Studio Art Major with a double in English (creative writing)

Hometown: Nowhere! My dad is in the Air Force and have not lived in any place longer than 3 years.

What was your favorite part of NEST: I loved doing all the activities and exploring the Virginia/DC area, as I am not from here. I also met my best friend through the program as well as many other great friends I am still close to.

Why did you want to be a Student Leader: My NEST Leader had a great impact on me and inspired me to do the same for incoming students. I think knowing and being close to someone that is familiar with the school and campus is a great advantage to have. 

Advice for incoming students: I know that some of you probably have begrudgingly entered this program as a result of parents wanting you to be proactive. Believe me, I understand: this was me. Please, however, realize that this is one of the best experiences you will have. Not only do you get to meet new people and have a leg up on the rest of the incoming student body by being familiar with people and the campus, but you get to go on adventures and do things that normally might not be an option. So PLEASE get excited, because we’re going to make NEST 2015 amazing and unforgettable. 

Fun fact: I’m actually a werewolf

Georgia Underhill

nest leaders 6Major: Political Science

Hometown: Bath, England… Yes, I have an English accent :)

Favourite part of NEST: My favourite part of NEST was getting to explore UMW and the Fredericksburg area before everyone else moved in!

Advice for incoming students: Be open to everything! Try new things, talk to people you wouldn’t usually talk to, and have fun!

Fun fact: My biggest pet peeve is seeing donuts and not being able to eat them

Kirsten Whitley

nest leaders 12Major: English

Hometown: Virginia Beach, VA

Favorite Part of NEST: Doing the incredible ropes course and the zip line!

Why I became a Student Leader: To be able to be a part of NEST again, and hopefully contribute to others enjoying the NEST week as much as I did.

Advice: Don’t be afraid to try new things, and step outside your comfort zone once in a while. You never know what could come of it.

Fun Fact: I’ve been a rock climber since I was a little kid, and occasionally do work at a ropes course.

Kiele Marston


Major/Minor: Biology and Art History

Hometown: Tampa, Florida

What was your favorite part of NEST: Getting to make wonderful friends and zip lining upside-down like Spiderman at Adventure Links.

Why did you want to be a Student Leader: Transitioning from the routine of your day-to-day life can be one of the most jarring experiences you go through. As a student leader, I want to help make this transition as easy as possible and guide future eagles in the direction of a positive college experience!

Advice for incoming students: Everything is going to seem scary and new. But this is your time! It’s your time to do that thing you’ve always wanted to do, step outside of your comfort zone, be the person you’ve always aspired to be. Don’t be afraid to say hello to the awkward, gangly kid next to you. Who knows, they may be your future best friend! So take chances and know that the NEST leaders have gone through the same experiences and are here to help you out!!

Fun fact: I once set a bagel on fire in Seacobeck… it inflamed my relationship with toasters. *ba dum tssshhh* In other words, I love puns and any pun or stupid joke is most welcome!