Ari Renda, Ph.D.
Ari Renda has 8+ years of experience in higher education. In 2019, they received their PhD from University of Michigan after completing their dissertation analyzing narratives of natural resource extraction in Latin America using critical race theory, disability studies, and queer theory.
During their time as a PhD student, they designed and facilitated professional development programming for Rackham Graduate School, provided teaching consultations for GSIs at the Center for Research on Learning and Teaching, and taught courses in Spanish and Women and Gender Studies. They were the instructor of record for the course Environmental Justice in Latin and Latinx America and co-chaired an environmental justice graduate student symposium.
Before joining SEAS, Ari worked as a career coach at the LSA Opportunity Hub where they offered individual career preparation appointments and facilitated professional development workshops for LSA Students. In this role, they led the administration of the Hub’s Student Advisory Team and created resources for enhancing the center’s accessibility for international students, students with disabilities, LGBTQ+ students, and undocumented students.
At SEAS, Ari is the designated career advisor for the undergraduate Program in the Environment students, the Environmental Justice Masters students, and the SEAS PhD students. They draw on their background providing career coaching for LSA students, their experience within the environmental justice field, and their knowledge of the PhD process at U-M to develop meaningful programming and support for their students. In addition to offering 1:1 coaching appointments and facilitating workshops, Ari leads the Careers Student Advisory Board for SEAS and PitE students well as the "Careers with Peers" Advising Program, offering training on career advising and support for undergrad and grad peer advisors.
Ari is also trained as a wellness coach through Wolverine Wellness, certified as a Mental Health First Aid Instructor, and offers trainings and consultations on trauma-informed services and instruction. Through integrating career development theory with wellness coaching practices, Ari aims to offer holistic career coaching that affirms students’ unique strengths, experiences, motivations, and goals.