Student Staff

NACC Student Staff work at the Center during open hours (4:00pm-10:00pm, Sunday through Firday) and assist with publicity, planning and coordinating events, and maintaining the NACC facilities.

Graduate Affiliate

 
Kayla Cabrera
School: Yale School of Music 2023
Hometown: Crete, Illinois
Major: Music
Native Nation: Taíno
 
Kayla Cabrera (she/hers) is a first year masters student at the Yale School of Music, and she is excited to be a part of the NACC Student Staff team! When she isn’t practicing viola, Kayla can usually be found hiking, advocating for social and environmental justice, gaming, participating in cultural and educational events with her yukayeke (native community) Higuayagua, and snuggling with her Scottish Terrier named Maizy.

 

   
   

House Staff

 

Sandra Amezcua Rocha

Jonathan Edwards 23’

Hometown: El Monte, California

Major: Environmental Studies 

Native Nation: P’urhépecha and Nahua

Sandi (she/hers) is excited to work with the Indigenous community at Yale. She loves to cook her traditional food as well as try new recipes at the NACC and La Casa while teaching and sharing stories/music with others. When she’s not cooking or eating, she’s learning and thinking about the relationships between Indigenous food sovereignty and environmental health.  At Yale, she’s part of several peer mentoring/teaching programs and ballet folklorico mexicano.

 
McKenzie Denham
Ezra Stiles College ‘23
 
Hometime: Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
Majors: African Studies and Political Science
Native Nation: Cherokee Nation and Choctaw Nation
 
McKenzie is a junior in Ezra Stiles College double majoring in African Studies and Political Science. Outside of House Staff, McKenzie is secretary of Association of Native Americans at Yale, a member of the Yale Cheerleading team, and groups around campus including YUPP, Women’s Leadership Initiative, and Yale Dems. In her free time she loves picnicking, reading YA, and watching unrealistic period pieces on Netflix!
 

Truman Pipestem, He/Him

Morse 24

Hometown: Skiatook, Oklahoma
Major: Humanities
Tribal Nation: Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, Osage Nation, Otoe-Missouria Tribe
 
Truman is a sophomore in Morse College from Skiatook, Oklahoma. He previously served as an NACC First-Year Liaison before joining House Staff. Within the Yale Native community, Truman is the president of Red Territory and an ANAAY bonding coordinator. Outside of the NACC, Truman is a member of the Lux Improvitas Improv Comedy Troupe. In his free time, Truman can be found unwinding in the NACC, participating in Morse IMs, or watching cartoons. 

 

Evan Farmer

Benjamin Franklin ‘22

Hometown: Louisville, KY

Major: American Studies & German Studies

Native Nation: Shawnee

My studies as an undergraduate at Yale concentrate on international cooperation and inequities within global markets through a trans-Atlantic double major of American & German Studies. As a MacMillan Center Language Fellow and Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholar, I have had the privilege of studying abroad in Germany and Tanzania to improve foreign language skills, cultivate cross-cultural fluency, and conduct community service. I am additionally passionate about disability advocacy in the academic sphere as a Disability Peer Mentor for Student Accessibility Services and previously as an Exceptional Child Instructional Assistant in my hometown’s public school district while on leave of absence. In my downtime, I enjoy playing sports with friends, composing music, and long walks with my puppy.

 

Nolan Arkansas

Trumbull ‘22

Hometown: Elawodi (Cherokee, North Carolina)

Major: American Studies

Native Nation: Anikituwagi (Cherokee)

Nolan has been a member of the NACC House Staff since 2018, this year managing the newsletter, social media accounts, and a number of community events and seminars. In addition to House Staff, he’s a Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellow in American Studies. On campus, he’s an active member of ANAAY and a founding member of Indigenous + Queer. He enjoys anything outdoors, but takes special interest in gardening Indigenous foods like corn, squash, gourds, and beans. Reach out to talk about the newsletter, NACC events, gardening, or to grab socially-distanced coffee.

 

Jay Fife

Davenport ‘22

Hometown: Beggs, Oklahoma, I.T.

Major: American Studies

Native Nation: Mvskoke, Chickasaw, and Apsaalooke (Crow) 

Jay Fife is a senior Mvskoke student from Beggs, Oklahoma. Jay is a Yale College Bouchet Fellow majoring in American Studies with a concreation in Politics and American Communities. As a Bouchet Fellow, Jay’s research examines how Christinaity altered and influenced the Mvskoke language while analyzing how Christianity continues to subvert language, sovereignty, and identity within the Mvskoke Nation. He grew up on the Mvskoke Reservation and comes from the Oce Vpofv Tribal town and Hotvlkvlke (Wind) Clan. At Yale, Jay works for Davenport College as a student aide and the NACC as a house staffer. You can find Jay at the Yale Divinity School, Davenport College, Commons, or any building on High Street! 

 
Hema Patel she/her/hers
Saybrook ‘23
 
Hometown: Minneapolis, MN
Major: History of Science, Health, and Medicine & Education Studies Certificate
Native Nation: Turtle Mountain Ojibwe & Gujarati American
 
Hema is a member of Yale’s hip-hop dance team (Rhythmic Blues), Vice President of the Association of Native Americans at Yale, and co-leads Yale CityStep, an organization that teaches dance to students in New Haven. She loves beading, face-timing her sisters, eating Hot Cheetos, and learning her cultural languages Hindi and Ojibwe.
 

Catherine Webb

Benjamin Franklin ‘22

Hometown: Newport Beach, California

Major: Environmental Science and Art

Native Nation: Cherokee

Catherine Webb is a sophomore in Benjamin Franklin and is double majoring in Environmental Science and Art. She is the liaison between the NACC and the Yale Sustainable Food Project, and is very passionate about indigenous agriculture. Outside of her work with the NACC and YSFP, she competes on the Yale sailing team and is apart the Diversity and Inclusion division of the Student Athlete Advisory Council.

First Year Liaisons - 2021-2022

 

Rebecca Sosa-Coba 

Pauli Murray ‘25
 
Hometown: Bloomfield, New Jersey
Major: Neuroscience
Native Nation: Kichwa tribe (Ecuador)
 
Rebecca (she/her) is a prospective neuroscience major on the pre-med track, but she is also interested in Psychology, Cognitive Science, and Gender Studies. In her free time, Rebecca loves rewatching Avatar The Last Airbender, listening to music, and drawing / painting / meditating. You can find Rebecca in the kitchen baking popular deserts and cooking traditional Ecuadorian dishes!
 
 
Madeline Gupta
Morse College ’25
Hometown: Ann Arbor, Michigan 
Majors: Applied Math, Ethnicity Race and Migration  
Native Nation: Ojibwe 
 
Madeline (she/her) is a first year in Morse College. She is interested in studying data science and ethnicity, race, and migration. Outside of school, she likes to dance, paint, and play with her dog Miley. She is super excited to join the Indigenous community at Yale!
 

Sunni Parisien, she/they

Pauli Murray College ‘25

Hometown: Belcourt, North Dakota 

Majors: Ethnicity, Race, & Migration and Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies  

Native Nation: Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa (Anishinaabe)

Sunni Parisien (she/they) is a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa (Anishinaabe) from Belcourt, North Dakota. A first year in Pauli Murray college, they are interested in studying Ethnicity, Race, & Migration and Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies. In her free hours, she can be found adventuring to every coffee and book shop in New Haven, wistfully looking at pictures of her cat Penelope, and napping the amount of time equivalent to an elder’s. If you see them on campus, say hi and ask for a dad joke. You are guaranteed to regret it or your money back!