Meet the Ambassadors


We train our WV SPOT Ambassadors to give quality presentations. Through our intensive training weekends, ambassadors learn science content knowledge, science communication skills, public speaking skills, and how to handle questions from students. These college role models are diverse and full of inspiration!

Representing Fairmont State University!

Samantha Blair
Morgan Polin
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Erica McCoy
Erin Fultineer

Representing Marshall University!





Rae Stanley
 is a junior at Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia. She is studying physics and biology. She hopes to attend the University of Colorado, Boulder for a graduate degree in astrophysics.








Jayden Leonard is a freshman physics major at Marshall University but currently lives in Milton, W.V. He has attended Grace Christian School and Calvary Baptist Academy for 11 years and has also attended Milton Elementary his 5th grade year. He is especially interested in the fields of astronomy and relativity and is very eager to start educating other students about these and other scientific topics

Jordan Losh

Mayson Wells Pine
Sawyer Adkins

Emma Lockyer

Representing Shepherd University!

Ben Denny

Representing West Virginia State University!



Elijah Roberts
grew up in Man, WV. He was homeschooled for k-12, and now lives in Teays Valley attending West Virginia State University. Elijah studies biology, psychology, sports studies, and chemistry. He makes an effort to take advantage of as many opportunities as possible; He has worked as an English teacher in rural China, works as the Student Government Association President, plans gigantic fundraisers such a Relay for Life and international festivals, worked in a biology lab for three years, 并正在学习会中文。I chose to participate in SPOT because I want to spark an interest for science in the minds of k-12 students, and hopefully contribute to some considering a career in STEM. Great science can come from anyone.





Umer Rizwan is a senior at WVSU majoring in Biology, Umer has an interest in genomics and big data. His hobbies include making cheese, rearing killifish and writing science fiction for Nature Futures. He wrote a winning entry for the WVSU Annual Essay Contest, maintains a student website, wvsu.club and loves 3D printing models for teaching and outreach. As a student dedicated to improving STEM access, he is happy to visit schools close to Dunbar, WV to deliver presentations and conduct hands on activities as part of SPOT. His personal favorite presentations relate to water quality and space technology.





Representing West Virginia University!




Hayleigh Moore is a junior public relations major with a minor in computer science. She is from Martinsburg, WV and is heavily involved with the Reed College of Media at WVU as an executive board member of the Public Relations Student Society of America and a research assistant for the Reed College. Her goal is to work in science communications to spread awareness and create campaigns of the ever-expanding STEM fields to youth across the nation.

















Kelsey Offutt is a sophomore at West Virginia University studying Elementary Education. She is originally from Huntington, WV. This is her second year in SPOT, which she joined to get K-12 students excited about science and promote future STEM careers. She hopes to visit schools all around the state in the next year and reach students that have never considered the possibility of working on scientific breakthroughs in their home state.



















Anthony Valentino is from Washington Twp, NJ and is currently attending WVU for a bachelors degree in Aerospace Engineering.  Prior to that he was in the US Navy serving on the USS Kentucky and a nuclear training command in Saratoga Springs, NY.  He joined SPOT because of his interest in space and to increase motivation for higher education in West Virginia.










Aaron Sealey is a Business Finance Major at West Virginia University in Morgantown, West Virginia. He is from the small town of Marietta, Ohio, which is on the Ohio/West Virginia border. He works as a Resident Assistant at his University, competes in powerlifting competitions, and plans to attend graduate school at WVU after completion of his undergraduate. 


















Robert Wilson is an undergraduate Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering student at West Virginia University. Robert was born in Wheeling, WV and began his education at WVU in 2014. He is involved with the WVU Experimental Rocketry Team and is researching microgravity effects on electrical components for human space-flight applications. Robert joined SPOT in 2014 for his interests in astronomy and physics and his want to inspire a new generation of scientists and engineers. 

















Adri Persad is from Shepherdstown, on the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia. He's a third-year student of mechanical and aerospace engineering at West Virginia University, is involved in the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and helped to write the SETI presentation! He once ate half a pizza in one sitting.











Madison Riffe is originally from Charleston, WV and is currently a sophomore at West Virginia University. She is studying secondary science education and hopes to teach biology and chemistry to public school students. She became a SPOT ambassador in the fall of 2015 and is excited to visit schools in West Virginia to share the things she has learned through SPOT with the scientists and educators of the future!


















Derek Ross is a sophomore at West Virginia University who is currently studying mechanical and aerospace engineering. Derek is from York, Pennsylvania where he graduated from Red Lion Area High School in 2015. He originally came into the engineering program at WVU under petroleum and natural gas engineering but switched to aerospace due to his love for space. Derek has hopes to work for NASA someday and is currently working towards that goal.





















Representing West Virginia University Institute of Technology!

Representing West Virginia Wesleyan College!







Mark Leadingham II is a junior math and physics double major at West Virginia Wesleyan College. He is from Sharpsburg, Maryland and plans to go on to study astrophysics at the graduate level. He is a SPOT ambassador, a member of the Pulsar Search Collaboratory, and just really loves those radio waves.













































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