Peer coaches are second-, third-, or fourth-year students who have successfully completed advanced levels of the medical school curriculum.  They are trained by Academic Success staff members to support their fellow students in all areas related to their time with the UK College of Medicine, including academics, extracurricular activities, and more.  

Below you will find brief profiles for all our current coaches and a link to request an appointment. If you would like to meet with a specific peer coach based on their profile, you will be asked to indicate that within the appointment request form. Please note that this does not guarantee a match with that coach! They may be unavailable due to their current school schedule or prior commitments to other students.  

Once you have submitted a request, it will be processed by Academic Success staff, and you will be contacted by a peer coach as soon as possible. This outreach will come directly from your matched peer coach. Together you will discuss the best type of support they can provide. There is no obligation to meet with a peer coach once you have been matched, but we ask that you let us know if you have changed your mind about participating in the program.  

If you have any questions about the Peer Coach Program, please contact Emily Scanlon (

Megan Yadav

Pronouns: She/Her

Current Year and House: NKY M2, Appaloosa  

Hometown: Florence, Ky.  

Undergraduate Institution and Major: University of Kentucky, Psychology  

Extracurricular Involvement: AHEC (Area Health Education Center) Scholars program; UK College of Medicine Student Ambassador; AMA Member; DSCA; Appaloosa ARC; OB/GYN Research

More About Megan

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Tied for Neuroscience and Cardiology 

“Neuro is so fascinating since everything we do is controlled by one organ - our brain! But, our hearts are also essential. The brain and heart work so hard to allow us to breathe and live every day. Learning about both of these reminded me of the importance of life and why I want to be a doctor.” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Internal Medicine  

Top Tips for Success from Megan:  

  • Meet new people and make friends - it makes medical school so much easier. 
  • Never give up. Remind yourself of why you wanted to be a doctor - this was once your dream and it still is, just keep reminding yourself of that! 
  • Keep trying different learning/ studying strategies and daily routines until you find one that works for you. You'll know when you find it because it makes studying easier and more enjoyable. 
  • Don't lose sight of things that you do for fun/ happiness - for me it is listening to podcasts, working out, spending time with family/friends, etc 

Megan’s “Yearbook” Quote: “You aren't studying to pass a test; you are studying to prepare for the day when you are the only thing between a patient and the grave.”  - Mark Reid 

Alex Voelker

Pronouns: She/Her

Current Year and House: NKY M3, Appaloosa  

Hometown: Jeffersonville, Ind.  

Undergraduate Institution and Major: Transylvania University, Neuroscience with emphasis in Biology 

Extracurricular Involvement: Neurology and Psychiatry Association NKY (Founder); OBGYN/Women’s Health Interest Group; UK Leadership Legacy Program 

More About Alex

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Neuroscience  

“I really like brains (I promise I am not a zombie) and neuroscience was my favorite class during the preclinical years. I love how you can map the brain and find out exactly where the problem is just based off a few symptoms.” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Child Neurology 

Top Tips for Success from Alex:  

  • Spaced repetition is key! I personally use Anki religiously but there are a lot of other ways to do this. 
  • I love using practice questions to study. For M1 I used questions from Boards and Beyond a lot and in M2 and M3 I have been using UWorld. 

Alex’s “Yearbook” Quote: “Never be so kind you forget to be clever. Never be so clever you forget to be kind.” - Taylor Swift 

Katelin Maggard

Pronouns: She/Her

Current Year and House : BG M2, Holsteiner  

Hometown: Owensboro, Ky.   

Undergraduate Institution and Major: Western Kentucky University, Biology  

Extracurricular Involvement: DSCA; UK College of Medicine Student Ambassador; Emergency Medicine Interest Group – BG (Vice President); KMA Advocacy Chair; CDC for Holsteiner House 

More About Katelin

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Neuroscience  

“I liked feeling like a detective using the tracts and other clues to localize the lesion.” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Interested in Emergency Medicine and Radiology but keeping an open mind!  

Top Tips for Success from Katelin:  

  • Create and find a routine that works for you and stick with it! Consistency and efficiency are two words I live by, and can be applied to most study routines, regardless of what resources you use, whether you go to class or watch ECHO, etc.  
  • And ALWAYS reach out when you need help - we believe in you and want you to succeed! 

Katelin’s “Yearbook” Quote: "Don't give up, don't ever give up." - Jim Valvano 

Shelby Carvalho

Pronouns: She/Her

Current Year and House: RPLP M3, Clydesdale  

Hometown: Lexington, Ky.   

Undergraduate Institution and Major: DePaul University, Health Science 

Extracurricular Involvement: RPLP; UK College of Medicine Student Ambassador; Psychiatry Interest Group; UKMED Program; Research; RPLP Rural Women’s Health Program  

More About Shelby

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Psychiatry   

“I loved our psychiatry course the most! I felt that it offered a different perspective on our approach to healthcare and touched on topics that are relevant to today's patient population but are often not discussed in other courses. It definitely further peaked my interest into the field of psychiatry and I look forward to learning more!” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Psychiatry  

Top Tips for Success from Shelby:  

  • Active recall – whether this is through Anki (doesn't have to be) or self-teach back. I felt this was the most helpful study technique I used because it helped build long-term foundations for the material.  
  • Utilizing Pathoma or Boards and Beyond to fill in any gaps in knowledge after lecture.  
  • Take time for yourself! 

Shelby’s “Yearbook” Quote: "Would I rather be feared or loved? Easy. Both. I want people to be afraid of how much they love me." - Michael Scott 

Sydney Winchester

Pronouns: She/Her

Current Year and House: LEX M2, Thoroughbred 

Hometown: Lexington, Ky.   

Undergraduate Institution and Major: University of Kentucky, Biology with Neuroscience minor 

Extracurricular Involvement: Mohs Surgery Interest Group (President); Dermatology Interest Group (Treasurer); AMWA Shadowing Coordinator; DSCA Member; FamTrack Participant; Surgical Skills Elective Participant  

More About Sydney

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): MSK   

“MSK because we learned about derm!” 

Top Choices for Specialty: Dermatology, Surgery, or Emergency Medicine  

Top Tips for Success from Sydney:  

  • Utilize charts for studying! 
  • Find good outside resources that you like to use. 

Sydney’s “Yearbook” Quote: “Don’t forget the reason you’re here!” 

A Note from Sydney: Please feel to reach out with any questions, I’m happy to help :)

Emily Hayes

Pronouns: She/Her

Current Year and House: LEX M4, Haflinger  

Hometown: Walton, Ky.   

Undergraduate Institution and Major: Transylvania University, Biology  

Extracurricular Involvement: Pediatrics Interest Group; Exercise in Medicine; (Former) FamTrack Participant; Carnegie Center Tutor

More About Emily

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Cardiology     

“I really enjoyed the pathophysiology of Cardiology, and I felt like I was beginning to feel more confident in my abilities in medical school. Though, Endocrine and Reproduction was a close second.” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Pediatrics

Top Tips for Success from Emily:  

  • Find out how you best understand information and find a way to put the information into that format for each topic.  
  • If you don't like pre-made resources, make your own concept maps, flash cards, etc. I personally liked the multifunctionality of Amboss and making my own cards for Anki. 

Emily’s “Yearbook” Quote: “Decide what to be and go be it.” - The Avett Brothers 

Susanna Goggans

Pronouns: She/Her

Current Year and House: LEX M2, Clydesdale 

Hometown: Paintsville, Ky.   

Undergraduate Institution and Major: University of Kentucky, Human Nutrition   

Extracurricular Involvement: PSMRF; Oncology Interest Group; DSCA 

More About Susanna

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Cardiology     

“I loved how you could predict the symptoms of every disorder based on what part of the heart got damaged, and how this class pulled together the previous two courses (respiratory and renal) to make everything click.” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Internal Medicine, potentially with a fellowship in Hemeatology/Oncology  

Top Tips for Success from Susanna:  

  • Adapt your studying for every class! Every course is very unique so if you find something is not working to help you understand the content, change it. 
  • If you use Anki, make sure you understand the cards before doing them. This will help you remember the cards more and Anki will not be pure memorization. It will make your reviews faster too. 
  • For diseases that are similar, focus on what is different. Test questions will likely have both as an option and you will need to differentiate them. 

Susanna’s “Yearbook” Quote: “The life so short, the craft so long to learn.” ― Hippocrates 

Caitlyn Blair

Pronouns: She/Her

Current Year and House: NKY M4, Rhinelander 

Hometown: Louisville, Ky.   

Undergraduate Institution and Major: St. Catherine College, Biology   

Extracurricular Involvement: Former VP for NKYMIG, current member; Former ARC; Co-Founder of a small art/apparel company  

More About Caitlyn

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Cardiology and Pulmonology     

“I love both the physiology and pathology in both systems.” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Emergency Medicine  

Top Tips for Success from Caitlyn:  

  • Go through the material multiple times - the first time just to understand the content generally, then add details later.  
  • Only use resources that actually help you, and don't use anything because you feel obligated or because everyone else is using it (I'm looking at you Anki)! 
  • If you aren't being productive while you are studying, stop and take a (guilt-free) break. Come back refreshed. Just because you sat at your computer for 5 hours doesn't mean you studied for 5 hours. 

Caitlyn’s “Yearbook” Quote: I think it would be "I don't know" since I said it approximately one million times on rotations. 

Nate Brunty

Pronouns: He/Him

Current Year and House: RPLP M2, Clydesdale 

Hometown: Morrow, Ohio   

Undergraduate Institution and Major: Tiffin University, Exercise Science   

Extracurricular Involvement: Sawbones; Global Surgery Student Alliance; Appalachian Medicine Interest Group 

More About Nate

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Neurology     

“Neural pathways are interesting once you figure them out. Before figuring them out, not so much.” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Orthopedic Surgery  

Top Tips for Success from Nate:  

  • Treat studying like a full-time job. 
  • Take breaks when you're not being efficient. 
  • Be able to talk through entire concepts before test day (teach someone). 

Nate’s “Yearbook” Quote: “Survive and advance.” 

Miranda Lin

Pronouns: She/Her

Current Year and House: LEX M3, Friesian 

Hometown: Long Island, N.Y.    

Undergraduate Institution and Major: University of Connecticut, Biological Sciences  

Extracurricular Involvement: Oncology Interest Group (President)

More About Miranda

Previous Medical Field Involvement: Miranda spent three years performing research in GI surgical oncology at the Markey Cancer Center. She helped develop IRB and clinical trial protocols, drafted grant and journal submissions, and had the opportunity to present our work at research conferences. 

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Endo/Repro     

“I enjoyed learning about the underlying pathophysiology of different hormonal cascades and how a deficiency or excess can lead to different endocrine conditions.” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Internal Medicine, with a Hematology/Oncology Fellowship  

Top Tips for Success from Miranda:  

  • Throughout M1/2, I created my own Anki cards based on lecture content to study for exams.  
  • The outside resource that was probably the most helpful for me was Sketchy Microbiology/Pharmacy. I would watch the videos and unsuspend Anking cards relevant to the videos. 
  • During dedicated, I transitioned to writing notes in a notebook and reading the notebook whenever I ate meals or went on a walk for review. This seemed less stressful than keeping up with thousands of Anki cards each day. 

Miranda’s “Yearbook” Quote/Advice: Read the room. To me, a lot of medical school is about evaluating situations and adapting as you go. During the first two years, you are moving through many different subjects; third year is about working in clinical teams and interacting with patients that may change on a daily basis. I think it's exciting to recognize new challenges and reflect on best approaches for tackling new content, contributing to a team, and developing a relationship with patients! 

Shivam Champ-aneria

Pronouns: He/Him 

Current Year and House: BG M3, Holsteiner 

Hometown: Franklin, Ky.    

Undergraduate Institution and Major: University of Kentucky, Biology 

Extracurricular Involvement: Representative for the BG Internal Medicine Interest Group; Various Case Reports in Lexington and Bowling Green

More About Shivam

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Foundations      

“I really loved how organized the class was which made learning so easy. Moreover, I surprisingly really enjoyed all the immunology we learned regarding T cells and B cells.” 

Top Choice for Specialty: No specific specialty (yet!), but dreams about going to a big academic center for residency like UK, UL, or Vanderbilt   

Top Tip for Success from Shivam:  

Anki, Boards and Beyond, and Pathoma were ways I succeeded in class, as well as on Step 1. 

Shivam’s “Yearbook” Quote: “I'm not superstitious, but I am a little stitious” —Michael Scott 

A Note from Shivam: I believe that medical school should be a team effort. We will all succeed if we work together, don't be afraid to reach out to peer coaches for anything (advice, school help, venting, etc.). All of us have been there and done that, and are really happy to help! 

Mohammed Hindi

Pronouns: He/Him

Current Year and House: LEX M4, Thoroughbred 

Hometown: Louisville, Ky. 

Undergraduate Institution and Major: University of Louisville, Chemistry  

Extracurricular Involvement: Research; Medical Student Survival Journal  

More About Mohammed

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Foundations      

“I liked learning bugs and drugs!” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Internal Medicine 

Top Tip for Success from Mohammed:  

  • If you're going to procrastinate, do it with intention. Don't spend time worrying that you should be studying because you will still feel stressed afterward.  
  • It's easy to avoid distractions if you have no way to access them (e.g. giving your phone to someone else, studying somewhere quiet). 
  • Rote memorization can be a short-term solution if something isn't "sticking", but coming up with a "rule" to learn something works better in the long run. 

Mohammed's “Yearbook” Quote: You can’t spell success without “U”!  

Morgan Bahnsen

Pronouns: She/Her

Current Year and House: NKY M4, Rhinelander 

Hometown: Ripley, Ohio    

Undergraduate Institution and Major: Thomas More University, Biology    

Extracurricular Involvement: Resilient NKY Chapter; CCRU Volunteer; Research Student with UK Anesthesia 

More About Morgan

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): MSK      

“I liked learning about those topics, and Dr. Twist and Dr. Higgins were so much fun!” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Anesthesia  

Top Tips for Success from Morgan:  

  • Schedule out your day, including any fun activities you are looking forward to. 

  • Find your support group and don't be afraid to lean on them.  

  • Med school is only one part of your life and it's a long journey, enjoy your time and don't take yourself so serious 24/7! 

Morgan’s “Yearbook” Quote: "We need to remember what's important in life: Friends, waffles, and work. Or waffles, friends, work. It doesn't matter. But work is third." - Leslie Knope 

Alex Johnston

Pronouns: She/Her 

Current Year and House: LEX M3, Clydesdale 

Hometown: Warsaw, Ky. 

Undergraduate Institution and Major: Western Kentucky University, Biology 

Extracurricular Involvement: Pediatrics Interest Group (VP)

More About Alex

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Respiratory    

“I loved the connections between physiology and clinical applications that we learned in this class!” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Pediatrics

Top Tip for Success from Alex:  

Set aside specific time with no distractions - no phone, no talking, etc. It makes study time much more efficient!

Alex’s UKCOM “Yearbook” Quote: "For every minute you are angry you lose sixty seconds of happiness." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Emad Chishti

Pronouns: He/Him

Campus, Current Year and House: LEX M3, Mustang 

Hometown: Houston, Texas 

Undergraduate Institution and Major: University of Kentucky, Neuroscience 

Extracurricular Involvement: Curriculum Committee

More About Emad

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Nephrology  

“Renal physiology is fascinating!” 

Top Choice for Specialty: TBD

Top Tips for Success from Emad:  

  • Memorize when necessary, but prioritize understanding

  • Be productive, not busy

Emad’s “Yearbook” Quote: "Trust in God, but tie up your camel."

JT Newman

Pronouns: He/Him

Current Year and House: BG M2, Trakehner

Hometown: Bowling Green, Ky.  

Undergraduate Institution and Major: Western Kentucky University, Biology  

Extracurricular Involvement: Bowling Green Ambassador Chair, WOGSS

More About JT

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Neurology

“I'm a very visual learner and I found neurology to be like a big puzzle. Once you connect all the pieces things made sense.” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Urology or Anesthesiology  

Top Tips for Success from JT:  

  • Using outside resources to connect pieces of the information given in class or to get the information from a different point of view, is something I do almost daily and many times saves time.
  • Customizing class Anki's or Anking cards can really increase retention, the action of actually editing the card and/or reorganizing the information in a way that makes sense to me really helps me efficiently study.
  • Using practice questions in advance of an exam from Boards and Beyond, UWorld, or past classes always helps me pinpoint where my weaknesses or lapses in content lie.

JT’s “Yearbook” Quote: "The key to success is to focus on goals, not obstacles."

Ashami Athukorala Cooper

Pronouns: She/Her

Current Year and House: LEX M4, Haflinger  

Hometown: Lexington, Ky.  

Undergraduate Institution and Major: University of Kentucky, Biology

Extracurricular Involvement: Anesthesiology Interest Group; American Women’s Medical Association; Student National Medical Association

More About Ashami

Favorite M1/M2 Class(es): Respiratory

“I do pulmonary research so I enjoyed learning about the pathology and physiology.” 

Top Choice for Specialty: Anesthesiology 

Top Tips for Success from Ashami:  

I like to study in 3 steps :)

  1. Info gathering: B&B, lectures, etc
  2. Organizing my info in a way I understand and remember- tables, mind maps, Anki etc
  3. Practice questions- Amboss, UWorld

Ashami’s “Yearbook” Quote: "I’ve decided to be happy because it is good for my health." – Voltaire