Our Staff

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Alberto Rodriguez (he/him)

Alberto is the Center’s Housekeeper originally from Miami, FL. You can catch him on a coast lying on the beach or somewhere across the globe experiencing different cultures. Heis passionate about baseball, running track, and food — all of which have taken him to parts of the world he could never imagine (18 US states and three countries!). Alberto’s ultimate goal is to make an impact on younger generations from all walks of life by sharing his experiences, encouraging them to keep an open mind, and helping them find the “beautiful” about every person, place, or thing in life.
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Emily Orengo (she/her)

Emily is a junior in the College majoring in the Biological Basis of Behavior with a minor in Psychology. She works as a research assistant at the Penn Child Development Labs and volunteers at HUP. In her free time, you can find her curating Spotify playlists, playing piano, and exploring the city.

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Erin Cross (she/her)

Erin, the Center’s Director, is a Cleveland, OH native who now calls Philadelphia home. Before coming to Penn she held various jobs after earning her B.A. in History and Political Science from The College of Wooster, M.A. in Political Science from The Pennsylvania State University, and Ph.D. from Penn’s Graduate School of Education (GSE) specializing in queer, gender, and learning theories in out of school contexts. In addition to her duties at the Center, Erin is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at GSE, Affiliate Faculty with Penn’s Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies Program, Pre-Major Advisor in the College, Restorative Practices at Penn facilitator, Anti-Violence Advocate, and sits on the Provost’s Wellness Advisory Committee, Alcohol and Other Drug Task Force, International Student and Scholar Service’s International Partners Outreach Group, and the Vice Provost’s Sexual Assault Working Group. She has been honored as a Model of Excellence, Penn’s highest staff honor, four times, teaches annually at GSE, and was a co-primary investigator on a Provost’s Excellence through Diversity Fund grant around inclusion of LGBTQ students and topics in professional education, and is part of a Penn Futures grant looking to prepare students at GSE, SP2, and SON to better serve LGBTQ+ youth, particularly those of color. Outside of work she enjoys a good night’s sleep, reading for fun, finding restaurants where she can actually eat, watching NHK World, and staying connected with friends and family, near and far.  Erin loves spending time with her partner, Amy, and all the cool kids in her life.

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Felipe Gomez (he/him)

Felipe is a senior in the college, majoring in Marketing at Wharton. Originally from Medellin, Colombia, Felipe immigrated to the US when he was six years old. Since then, Felipe has lived in Miami, FL with his mother. In his free time, Felipe enjoys playing volleyball, going to the bea
ch, watching movies, hanging out with friends, and most importantly, trying new food.

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Jan Kee-Scott (she/her)

Jan in the Center’s Business Administrator. She takes amazing care of us and ensures the money goes where it needs to go.  Although her office is in the Office of Student Affairs because she works with other Penn officestoo, we could not function without her knowledge and expertise.  Jan is also an early bird who enjoys traveling and hot yoga.

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Joao Campos (he/him)

 Joao is a senior in the College from a city in central Brazil called Belo Horizonte. He is an International Relations and Political Science major in the hopes of actually doing some good in the world. In his free time, he likes to eat good food and watch good Netflix shows.

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Malik Muhammad (he/him)

Malik Muhammad is an Associate Director at the LGBT Center. A Philadelphia native, Malik holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology as well a Master’s degree in Higher Education Counseling and Student Affairs from West Chester University (WCU) of Pennsylvania. A proud brother of the Pennsylvania Tau Chapter of Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity, Malik’s passion for social justice began at an early age as  the son and grandson of phenomenal change agents in the Philadelphia African American Muslim community. That passion was reignited and started to flourish during his six-year academic and para-professional career at WCU. There he came to realize the deep significance of LGBTQ+ advocacy, education, and working with an intersectional lens at the higher education level and in all walks of life. Now, years later, Malik is a change agent himself. At Penn, he diligently works to support students, faculty, staff, alumni, and community members spearheading the Center’s educational programs, advising LGBTQ+ student groups, and fostering collaboration across the University with various other roles. Malik also serves the Philadelphia community as a member of the Penn Center for AIDS Research Community Advisory Board, the Colours Organization Board, and as a talented local artist/entertainer. From the moment you meet him, Malik’s genuine, energetic, and optimistic nature is undeniable and often, quite contagious. If you haven’t already, find out for yourself!

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Michael Williams (he/him)

Michael Williams is a senior in the College from Brooklyn, NY. He was originally born in Tampa, FL and spent most of his childhood in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. He ismajoring in Political Science and will pursue a career in journalism, politics or law. In his spare time he enjoys listening to music, particularly Erykah Badu, Solange, SZA and Janet Jackson to name a few. He also writes poetry and acts. He hopes to bring his passion for advocacy to the Center.

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Tathagat Bhatia (he/him)

Tathagat is a senior from Lucknow, India studying Math and Philosophy in the College. He has an undying love for ice skating, Russian, and just about anything with Meryl Streep in it. When he’s not busy calculating derivatives and telling people about how culturally shocking he finds the US, he can be found in one of the quieter spots in Van Pelt, studying and missing Appa, a very cute beagle who’s waiting for him back home.

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Tayondra Williams (she/her)

Philly native Tayondra, also known as Tay, is our building’sservice mechanic. She has been employed  at Penn for ten years and lovesfixing things. Outside of work Tay enjoys spending time with her wife and son.If she’s not at work or with her family, she’s probably somewhere reading abook. Her all time favorite novel is “The Great Gatsby ” by F.Scott Fitzgerald.

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Trent McHenry (he/him)

Trent is a senior in the College from Lenexa, KS. Through the Vagelos Molecular Life Sciences Program, he is planning on majoring in chemistry and biochemistry and submatriculating in chemistry. Outside of classes and lab, Trent is the social director for the West Philly Swingers and loves dancing and spending time with them. He is also a proud member of the Penn Band.

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Kandyceis a pre-med sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences. She is currentlydeciding between a major in Biological Basis of Behavior and the delight thatis Creative Writing.  She originallyhails from small town suburbia just outside of Houston, Texas but is thrilledto be in a place that occasionally drops below 50 degrees (seeing snow for thefirst time last year changed her life). Kandyce is a second year member of the Penn dance group Strictly Funkand is excited to be dabbling in her own choreography this year.  In her free time, she enjoys listening tomusic, writing, and visiting local puppy adoption shops