Meet Our Student Member Officer Pals
Splash Pals Adapted Aquatics has outstanding student member officers with a wide variety of backgrounds and leadership skills. We are here to assist you in every way possible and retain Lifeguards and CPR Certified individuals at all times to provide a fun AND safe environment.
Hannah is a junior at the University of Florida. She grew up in Tampa, Florida and attended Hillsborough High School. She was captain of her swim team and swam outside of school since she was four. Additionally, she was a teacher’s aide in the autism unit at her school. At the University of Florida, Hannah is currently a double major in Health Science and Psychology, on the pre-occupational therapy track.
Outside of Splash Pals, Hannah volunteers throughout the Gainesville community. She volunteers in a classroom at Sidney Lanier school and volunteers with Balance 180 gymnastics. During the summers, she works at Dream Oaks Camp, a summer camp for children with special needs.
Sofia is Senior studying Biology at the University of Florida. She transferred last year from Miami Dade Honors college. Sofia is originally from Spain and moved to Miami when she was 13. All of her life she wanted to become a pediatrician. Sofia has babysat kids for the past 6 years, has been a camp counselor for migrant kids in Lake Worth and has been on two summer mission trips in Esteli, Nicaragua, where she engaged kids in activities.
Sofia wanted to become a part of Splash Pals because it combines her passion to help others and to be with kids. At UF she is a part of the Pre-Health Honor Society and has volunteered over 30 hours in the Spring Semester with many organizations such as Top Soccer, Aces in Motion and went to Orlando to give kids the world. Sofia is also part of the Hype Team for Hispanic Heritage Month and was an Assistant Director for the Gator Chapter of the Children's Heart Foundation. Although Sofia just got involved with this organization she is so excited to make it grow and make a positive impact on the kids through each pool session.
Jayme is a junior at the University of Florida. She is originally from Boynton Beach, Florida, where she volunteered at her local hospital and discovered her love for the healthcare professions. She is now majoring in Health Science, and is a part of UF’s accelerated Occupational Therapy program. Jayme has always had a passion for working with children, and through Splash Pals has been able to develop her goal of helping children with special needs, the group she hopes to work with in her future career.
Outside of Splash Pals, Jayme volunteers at a Shands pediatric occupational therapy clinic, as well as participates in research programs. She also volunteers at Lake Forest Elementary School, and works as a camp counselor at the Boynton Beach YMCA over the summers.
Melanie was born in Alajuela, Costa Rica. When she was five years old, her parents moved her and her brother to Florida in hopes of finding better opportunities. Growing up, Melanie was a dedicated swimmer and always felt a drive to help others.
Her participation with other volunteer groups, through organizations and medical mission trips, have pushed her to take on a more active role in her community. She volunteers at a local Heart & Vascular hospital, a child development center, and spends time collecting toys to send on medical missions. Her love for children, swimming, and serving others is how she knew she had to be a part of Splash Pals.
Melanie is currently a pre-nursing student at the University of Florida. Working with children who have disabilities has also inspired her to seek a minor in disabilities in society. Melanie hopes to be able to take what she learns from Splash Pals and apply it to her future job as a nurse practitioner. Every week, she wishes to make a difference in the lives of the children she interacts with. Seeing how much the children enjoy being in the pool and how far they have come is what makes Splash Pals so special for her.
Sephara Pierre and is a first-year Pre-Med student at the University of Florida who is double majoring in Pre-Professional Biology and Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience. She was born and raised in Miami with my two younger siblings and has always had a passion for community outreach and volunteering.
Every summer, back home, Sephara would volunteer at the local hospital and was able to spend time with admitted patients, nurses, and other staff members, getting to experience the inner workings of a hospital. She is a part of chemistry outreach, which visits local elementary schools and builds up our community’s future chemists.
Sehpara's love for volunteering, kids and making a change is what drew her to become a member of Splash Pals. She hopes that being a member of this program will further help my future career of becoming a doctor and working to help others.
(Best Pals Coordinator)
Milin Kurup is a sophomore studying at the University of Florida, double majoring in Microbiology and Cell Sciences and Psychology (Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience). He was born and raised in Tampa, FL with a younger brother, both who love basketball and swimming.
At a young age, he built a great interest in neuroscience and has been determined to pursue his dreams in the field. He works at the University of Florida McKnight Brain Institute with his Principle Investigator, Dr. Kevin Wang, and Ph.D. candidate Hamad Yadikar, where he has been working on Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) and their impact on neurological disease. After experience in neurological research and working with kids with disabilities, he hopes to pursue a career in pediatric neurosurgery and hopes to inspire children in medicinal sciences.