Sociology Professor + LGBTQ identity and health researcher
Jay Irwin, Ph.D. is a medical sociologist who researches and teaches in the areas of sexuality, LGBTQ identities and health, and social causes of health and illness. He is originally from Birmingham, Alabama, and has been at UNO since 2009. He is involved in community and campus social and advocacy groups, particularly around topics of transgender and queer identities. He is passionate about allowing young people to explore and develop their identities in a supportive and accepting environment. When he's not working, he's hanging out with his partner, three dogs, and cat.
Professor of Biomechanics
Dr. Nick Stergiou is the Distinguished Community Research Chair in Biomechanics and Professor, as well as the Director of the Biomechanics Research Building and the Center for Research in Human Movement Variability at the University of Nebraska at Omaha.
His research focuses on understanding variability inherent in human movement. He is an international authority in the study of Nonlinear Dynamics and has published more than 200 peer-reviewed articles. Dr. Stergiou’s research spans from infant development to older adult fallers, and has impacted training techniques of surgeons and treatment and rehabilitation techniques of pathologies, such as peripheral arterial disease. He has received more 30 million dollars in personal funding from NIH, NASA, NSF, the NIDRR/US Department of Education, and many other agencies
Mind-body awareness practitioner + singer + student
When we are children, we don't need a reason to move and be active because moving is fun. But as we grow into adulthood movement often becomes a painful chore. Through the mind-body technique of Nia, find out how moving for yourself can make all the difference in the world.
Grace Kolbo, soprano, is a vocal performance major at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. Grace completed her Nia White Belt training and received her teaching certificate in July 2015. During the Fall 2015 semester, Grace began her UNO FUSE funded project, “Exploring Nia for Singers.” Grace uses the Nia Technique, a mind-body conditioning program, as a vehicle through which to practice and promote the benefits of mind-body awareness and self-empowerment.
Fashion designer + student
Hannah Olson is a UNO junior entrepreneurship and marketing major in the College of Business Administration. She has been a fashion designer and small business owner since her senior year of high school and uses her clothing company, Hannah Caroline Couture, as a platform to share her strong beliefs in the power of entrepreneurship and positive body image.
Comedian + Non-profit founder + mother
In 2011 Heather Jones escaped her job in corporate communication with a little bit of soul still intact to raise her six kids and devote her time to standup comedy. She has since become a two-time winner of "Best Comedian" by the Omaha Entertainment and Arts Awards and is again nominated this year. Heather is also a founding member of Big Canvas Improv, a nonprofit organization that performs and teaches classes with a mission that comedy is for everyone.
Artist + student
Hugo has wanted to be an artist since his kindergarten teacher read The Very Hungry Caterpillar to the whole class. He was born in Los Angeles, California, where his path as an artist began. California is where he raised his first pit bull dog and where he discovered graffiti art and hip-hop. Now he is a UNO student and artist residing in South Omaha. Nebraska is where he began to grow as an artist, where some friends became family, where he began boxing, and where he raised his current pit bull.
Entrepreneur + digital technology specialist
A UNO alumnus, Jeff Slobotski is the VP of Business Development for Wave Interactive, a multidisciplinary team of engineers, designers and strategists who provide a full range of digital services including strategy, architecture, design and implementation. In addition to his work at Wave, Slobotski is also the Founder of Router Ventures, an angel investment fund that connects talented people and impactful companies with global, game-changing resources. Router Ventures just raised the first part of their fund, and invests in early stage technology companies. Before his current roles, Slobotski launched Silicon Prairie News. SPN is a digital media and events company dedicated to highlighting, connecting, engaging, and supporting entrepreneurs, creatives, and investors.
A variety of national publications, media outlets, and prominent writers have profiled Slobotski and his community-building efforts, including: TIME, Inc. Magazine, CNN, Fast Company, Kiplinger Finance, and Frontier.
Sustainable food advocate
Nancy Williams is on the board of directors for No More Empty Pots, a grassroots nonprofit corporation that promotes local, sustainable business to improve self-sufficiency and regional food security through advocacy and action. She has a passion for innovation, education, and collaboration. She has a commitment to excellent service and getting results. Nancy earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Horticulture from Louisiana State University and pursued a Master of Science degree at Cornell University. She has diverse experiences from sales to agronomy and information technology to project management. Nancy loves to witness collaboration that achieves phenomenal outcomes.
Associate Vice Chancellor of Enrollment Management
Omar Correa was appointed the Associate Vice Chancellor for Enrollment Management at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) on June 1, 2015. He comes to UNO with 19 years of service in higher education and has worked at both private and public institutions. He has worked for both Iowa State University and Concordia College to name a few. Omar Correa earned his B.S. in Chemistry from Iowa State University and also a M.Ed. in Higher Education Administration with an emphasis in Enrollment Management.
Latino advocate + student
Ricky Mercado was raised in Omaha, Nebraska. The son of Mexican immigrants, he is a first generation American, and in 2016 will become the first of his immediate family to graduate from college. He is a business student at the University of Nebraska at Omaha with a special interest in finance.
He has received several academic honors, has had lunch with Warren Buffett, and is currently the Junior Portfolio Manager for the Maverick Investment Program. In his role he monitors market movements, manages over half a million dollars, and leads presentations to over 30 Investment Program members. Ricky has also been the recipient of the Presidential Scholarship.
He strives to promote a positive image of Mexican immigrants and to challenge others to accept themselves for who they are as he explores the meaning of what it means to be an American.
Ambassador of Happiness + business strategist + motivational speaker
Stacey Flowers is an international speaker, business strategist, and author known for connecting happiness to peak performance. Stacey holds a Bachelor’s degree in Paralegal Studies from College of Saint Mary and a Master’s degree in Human Resources from Loyola University. She became the first in her family to graduate high school and pushed on as a first-generation college student, striving to build a legacy for her son and inspire others. In addition to her speaking circuit, Stacey presently consults at Metropolitan Community College in the Equity and Diversity Division where she is responsible for coordinating postsecondary educational resources for underrepresented groups. Stacey’s hope is to teach people to live beyond preconceptions, boundaries, and limiting beliefs.