Academic Support Programs

Meet the Staff

Adiam Tesfay

Interim Director

Hello! Being first generation to attend college, I struggled a lot and needed many campus resources, specifically a tutor, to get me through the experience, which is what makes me excited to work with the Center for Learning and Undergraduate Erichment (CLUE) and Academic Support Programs. CLUE is a fabulous resource for students to get support in their courses and in the general college experience as well. The academic achievement courses ASP staff teach will also allow you to learn to be an independant learner and work with a mentor as well. With so much support here for you at UW you are bound to be even more successful. Take advantage of all the help and resources out there. You only get one chance to be an undergrad so do it right!

I moved to Seattle from Arizona, where I was raised. I am originally from Eritrea, East Africa (was born in Sudan) and moved to Phoenix, at the age of 2. After high school I moved to Flagstaff to attend Northern Arizona University (NAU). I received both my BA in Speech Pathology and Audiology and my Masters in Education Psychology from NAU. I also worked at NAU as an Academic Advisor/Program Coordinator for four years helping students be academically successful within a TRIO program.

I like to volunteer, learn from and empower young adults, travel, listen to music and dance, love watching the performing arts, meeting new people, and I love learning new things, especially about culture and peoples' experiences. I have a huge family and friends all over the world so I spend a lot of time with them or talking to them. I am married and have a daughter that takes up most of my time now. I like reading and watching movies and I LOVE food, especially good food. I like to bake and am learning to cook more but love trying new recipes.

Feel free to send any feedback or suggestions/ideas you have about CLUE to

See you here soon!

Ryan Burt

Program Manager

Hi there! I was born and raised in Eastern Washington before moving to our lovely Emerald City to study at the University of Washington. The UW was big, but I was lucky to have friendly professors and inviting programs that made me feel connected and at home. For me that is a great goal for us in Academic Support Programs: to make every student feel supported and at home.  

I loved my undergraduate experience, where I studied English and the Comparative History of Ideas, and decided to continue my studies. In graduate school, I spent a lot of time thinking about how American universities can better welcome a diverse student population and offer classes that reflect an equally diverse curriculum.  Graduate school was difficult, but truly rewarding. In 2008 I received my PhD in the English Department at the UW.  

Over the years I have studied in Italy and Spain and taught for two years at a large public university in Southern Morocco. As I know how exhilarating, mind-opening and challenging it can be to live and learn in a country and culture that is not your own, I am grateful to be part of a team in Academic Support Programs committed to helping our students from all corners of the world succeed.  

Outside of school I love playing and listening to all kinds of music (I’m a drummer), checking out art, cooking, and getting into the beautiful Washington State out-of-doors. I love hanging with my family and friends.  After seeing some amazing parts of the world, I can say that Seattle is one of my favorite places to be.  

Please come visit me in ASP and let me know how I can help you at the University of Washington!

Ahnya Redman

Program Manager

I grew up in the frozen North – Fairbanks, Alaska, to be specific. In high school, I struggled with focus and motivation and actually dropped out in my senior year, convinced that school was torture. After a few months of working at minimum wage and watching soap operas on my mom’s couch, I returned to high school, completed my coursework, and applied to colleges. To be honest, I did this because it was expected of me – my own expectations of myself were very low. But to my surprise, I thrived in college – there was so much to learn! I loved every subject, and the challenge was thrilling; it was what I had been missing all along. But I had a lot of catching up to do before I could succeed… I had to learn study skills from scratch and adapt to coursework that was more difficult than anything I had ever experienced or even imagined. After a lot of hard work, I received a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from the University of Alaska-Fairbanks and went on to pursue a Master’s at Michigan State University in Entomology, inspired by my experience working with butterflies as an undergraduate researcher. From there, I went to Penn State University, where I earned a PhD in Ecology. After more than a decade teaching biology classes to undergraduates at Penn State and later at West Virginia University, I moved to Seattle in 2014.

Helping students identify and navigate through their own challenges is the most rewarding work I’ve ever done. College-level science classes can be a particularly difficult adjustment, and it is one I remember well. One of my goals in ASP is to help students develop the skills and confidence to succeed in science. It won’t be easy, but we can figure it out together!

Emery Lohrasbi

Program Manager

I grew up in the Yakima Valley surrounded by agriculture and amazing mentors who poured hours and hours of their time into preparing me for college and the great beyond.

After spending a year in Izmir, Turkey I found myself at UW doing Early Fall Start. The early start assisted my transition to college. I made friends, learned how to study, and navigate UW before the start of the first quarter.

The rigor of UW was galaxies away from my high school academic experience and I struggled at UW early on. Lucky for me, I found CLUE within the first year and became a regular! I went on to participate in many opportunities that Academic Support Programs provided.

In 2012 I graduated with my Bachelor of Arts in Social Work (BASW) and headed to graduate school at the University of Vermont (UVM). While in Burlington I was the First-Year Experience Coordinator and worked with the student leaders to create a peer-mentoring program. After my experiences at UVM I headed south to Atlanta and worked as an academic advisor at Georgia State University (GSU). At GSU I advised computer science, psychology, film and video, journalism, speech, biology, and Move on When Ready students.

I’m excited to be back at UW as a part of the Academic Support Programs team! Please stop by my office and say hi, I would love to help make your UW experience all that it can be.