Kipper and Adam Kline

Kipper, aka the Godfather, is TUSTEP’s original puppy-in-training. His raiser, Adam Kline, founded the club in 2012 as a freshman and paved the way for all of our future raisers. Originally from Lexington, Kentucky, Adam has a wanderlust that Kipper became a part of, traveling to many new places. While raising, he served as President of TUSTEP his freshman, sophomore, and junior years. Adam was also a fantastic puppy raiser, matriculating Kipper in February 2015. Kipper went on to graduate as a skilled companion with a young boy from Georgia, while Adam graduated in 2016 with a degree in Public Health.


Pindell and Nick Meloro

Pindell was the second puppy welcomed to Tulane, raised by Nick Meloro from Harleysville, Pennsylvania. Pindell was the only other member of the TUSTEP Class of 2014, making he and Kipper best puppy pals, even during their time at CCI. Pindell was released from advanced training and was adopted by Nick, who continues to teach him all manner of new tricks and commands. He may one day employ Pindell as a therapy dog. After four years as a student athlete on the track and cross country teams, Nick graduated from Tulane in 2016 with a degree in Marketing.


Ava and Leslie Howton

Ava came to Tulane with her brother Archer in September 2014 to be raised by Leslie Howton. Ava is a big, lovable goober (like her raiser.) A Lafayette, Louisiana native, Leslie majored in Early Childhood Education and Psychology and became an elementary school teacher after graduating in Spring 2016. Leslie served as Vice-President of TUSTEP in her sophomore and junior years. Just after Leslie’s graduation, Ava was released from advanced training due to some anxiety at school. Leslie certainly doesn’t count that as a failure though, because now Ava has a forever home with her in Nola!


Archer and Darian Hummel

Brother to Ava, Archer is the largest pup TUSTEP has had thus far. He and Ava, colloquially known as the ‘TUSTEP Twins,’ are polar opposites in all aspects of their personalities except lovability. His raiser, Darian Hummel, hails from Mandeville, Lousiana and majored in Classical Studies and Digital Design. She plans to become a graphic designer, or maybe even work for CCI! She served as TUSTEP Vice-President in her junior year at Tulane. She graduated a year early, in August 2016, at the same time as Archer. He is now companion to a female college student in Kentucky, where he gets to maintain his collegiate lifestyle for a few more years!


Dane, Michelle Kreutzberg, and Jess Knierim

Dane was by far the Dane-tiest dog ever raised by TUSTEP. He avoids puddles, remembers to sit up straight, and is always wearing his Sunday best. Dane was raised by our first co-raisers, Michelle Kreutzberg and Jessica Knierim. Michelle graduated with a master’s in Public Health Epidemiology in 2016, and Jess graduated in 2015 with a degree in Marketing. In August 2016, Dane graduated from CCI Advanced Training and was placed as a service dog for an Air Force veteran. He was TUSTEP’s first co-raising success, paving the way for future generations of co-raisers.


Sartori and Luis Ortega

Sartori was the first puppy in the TUSTEP class of 2017, our largest class ever. He was raised by Luis Ortega, a Management major working on a minor in Psychology until his planned graduation in 2018. Luis and his best friend Sergio supported each other and raised their puppies between trips home to Los Angeles. Sometimes known as Zartori or Zar, Sartori is a surprise ball of energy most likely to act calm and then catch his handler off guard. Sartori matriculated into professional training in November 2016, but was released and adopted back by Luis.


Diesel, Sergio Alaniz, and Paul Castedo

Diesel might actually be the laziest dog ever raised at Tulane. Affectionately known as Big Deez, Diesel is sometimes misunderstood, but is in fact very intelligent. His raiser, Sergio Alaniz raised Diesel whilst double-majoring in Legal Studies and Political Economy, plus minoring in Psychology, but due to unexpected circumstances, left Tulane early. Diesel’s raising was then finished up by trusted friend and sitter Paul Castedo, a New Orleans native. Diesel matriculated into advanced training in November 2016, after which he was placed as a facility dog in Baton Rouge.


Galaxy and Sabrina Smith

Galaxy, AKA G-Baby, is the smallest nugget ever raised by TUSTEP, and our first to ever be marked by CCI as a potential breeder. Her raiser, Sabrina Smith, is a trainer for the Tulane Green Wave football team, studying Entrepreneurial Management. Sabrina came to Tulane from Wellesley, Massachusetts and plans to graduate in 2018. Galaxy was released from CCI in 2016 as a result of a natural blindness in her left eye. She has been adopted by Sabrina.


Bodie and Kiersten Rankel

Bodie likes people better than other dogs and sunshine better than rain. He is a lazy but prim and proper pup, raised by Kiersten Rankel of Long Island, New York, with the help of Dixon Correctional. Kiersten served as TUSTEP President in her sophomore year, whilst majoring in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and minoring in Marine Biology. She also works in the education department at Audubon Zoo, teaching children about animals, and hopes to graduate in spring 2018. Bodie matriculated into advanced training in November 2016, and was placed as a hearing dog upon graduation! 


Trixie and Monica Holler

Trixie is arguably TUSTEP’s most energetic puppy, but she knows how to relax and spends most time sleeping on her back. Trixie was raised by Monica Holler, who is a double major in Neuroscience and Pyschology at Tulane. She is from Shelton, Connecticut and has served as TUSTEP’s Marketing Chair since her sophomore year. She expects to graduate in 2018, after which she will pursue a career in research. Trixie matriculated into professional training in November of 2016, but was eventually released and adopted by Monica. She is now enjoying life in retirement!

These images were taken on the Momenta Project New Orleans 2016 workshop in New Orleans, Louisiana. Photo © Ksenia Dobbs/Momenta Workshops 2016.

Lancaster and Jacob Borenstein

Lancaster, aka Lancelot or Lank,  enjoys long walks on the beach at sunset with his father. Lancaster is certainly amongst the top puppies in his class, being very obedient except when his raiser must scoop forbidden foods out of his reach. Speaking of his father, Jacob Borenstein from Rockville, Maryland, majored in Neuroscience and served as TUSTEP’s Treasurer in his sophomore year, garnering a new era in our fund usage. He hopes to graduate in 2018, while Lancaster matriculated into advanced training in February 2017. He was successfully placed as a facility dog in South Florida! 

These images were taken on the Momenta Project New Orleans 2016 workshop in New Orleans, Louisiana. Photo © Ksenia Dobbs/Momenta Workshops 2016.

Laser and Ted Hagens

Laser is a looker and quite the romantic, often called Laze, Little Wolf, or Menace. Brother to Lancaster, Laser is a great pup who definitely knows the difference between work and play time. Laser’s raiser, Ted, is a Neuroscience major with a minor in Public Health. He hails from Boulder, Colorado, where Laser had his fair share of snowy adventures. Ted served as VP of TUSTEP in his junior year. He expects to graduate in 2018, after which he will go on to attend medical school. Laser matriculated into puppy college in February 2017, but was subsequently released and adopted by Ted.


Woodstock and Bryce Montalbano

Woodstock is the first puppy in TUSTEP’s fourth generation of puppy raising. He is very vocal, but an educated and loving pup. His raiser, Bryce Montalbano, applied to raise as a completely new member of the club. He hails from Tulane’s own New Orleans, LA, allowing him to bring Woodie home for some quality family time. Woodstock matriculated to advanced training but was released and is now living happily in NOLA with Bryce who plans to graduate in 2019, majoring in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. 


Penzey and Claudia Barnett

Penzey, “Penz Pop” is a fast learner and extremely smart (as suggested by his white goatee). He is the perfect combination of energetic and mellow. He does not chew shoes but he loves to sleep on them, and his expressive puppy eyes melt hearts. His raiser, Claudia Barnett, began raising as a junior, after two years of extensive puppy sitting and living with legacy Archer III. She has been serving as TUSTEP secretary since sophomore year, and she graduated in 2018 with a degree Dance and Homeland Security. Penzey was released from advanced training and is currently living with Claudia. 

Rey, Xiao Zheng, and Ava Lambert

Ava Lambert and Xiao Zheng comprise TUSTEP’s fourth generation pair of puppy raisers. Their puppy, Rey, is the only female of her class, but she can hang on the soccer pitch with the best of ’em. She also enjoys pouncing on toys and spending time with her boyfriend, Penzey. Xiao and Ava both expect to graduate in 2019; Xiao with a degree in Neuroscience and Ava with Public Health. Both also hail from New York City, leading them to become best friends in their freshman year. Rey matriculated to advanced training and was released for car anxiety. After that, she was adopted by Ava and Xiao. 


Bryce and Alex Lahm

Bryce is part of the fourth generation of TUSTEP puppies. He is a sleepy puppy and whenever he is placed into the cradle position he will nod off. His raiser Alex Lahm lives in the Philippines and is pursuing a double major in political science and homeland security with a minor in environmental science. Before raising, Alex puppy sat for TUSTEP beginning in her freshman year. Unfortunately, Bryce was diagnosed with diabetes and released from CCI in 2017. He now resides with a family that adopted him in Pennsylvania.


Dorne and Lexi Kahn

Dorne was the last puppy to arrive in the fourth generation of TUSTEP. He is a calm, sweet puppy, with some big ears to fill! His raiser, Lexi, was a very dedicated puppy sitter before applying to become a raiser. She hails from Chicago and plans to graduate in 2019 along with most of the raisers in her class. Dorne was medically released from advanced training and now lives with Lexi in NOLA. 

Austin and Ryan McNamara

Austin is the first puppy to arrive for the 5th generation of TUSTEP dogs.  He can be described as both playful and cuddly, but knows when it’s time to work instead of play. Austin is being raised by sophomore and New Orleans native Ryan McNamara, and loves being able to get a good mix of both campus and home life in NOLA.  Ryan applied to be a TUSTEP raiser after being an extremely dedicated puppy sitter, during which he got to experience taking care of Penzey full-time for 3 weeks. He had a blast doing so, and is thankful for being able to have such an opportunity! Ryan plans to graduate in 2020, majoring in Finance and Homeland Security, and Austin matriculated to advanced training in February 2019. 

Wonka and Nic Kummer

By far the laziest TUSTEP dog to have come to campus, after a long day of sleeping through Nic’s Biochemistry and Spanish classes, Wonka would wait for his gear to be taken off and make his way directly to his bed for a well-deserved nap. While he logged the most hours of sleep out of 5th Generation, Wonka was still a big fan of running around the wide open spaces in Nic’s hometown of Huntsville, AL and playing soccer with his little brother. Nic is extremely grateful to CCI, TUSTEP, and Wonka for the experience of a lifetime and for helping him to find passions in service, education, and advocacy.

Colin and Sarah Randall

Colin is eager to work and will do anything for food. Known for getting the zoomies on walks and always finding the best stick to take with him, Colin loves to make passersby smile. Colin matriculates into advanced training in May of 2019. Colin’s raiser, Sarah, is a Public Health and French double major. She plans to complete her undergraduate degree in May 2020 and remain at Tulane to pursue her Master of Public Health. Sarah served as TUSTEP Secretary her Sophomore and Junior years.

Future, Jessica Altman, and Liv Evans

TUSTEP’s resident gentle giant, arriving last out of the 5th generation dogs as one of the chunkiest TUSTEP puppies, Future enjoyed sleeping his days away. As he grew and started training, he began blossoming with energy. As a pre-vet student, Jessica was grateful for the opportunity to have an animal buddy helping her through the late nights at Howie T. At the start of the 2018-19 school year, he moved in with his current raiser, Tulane senior Liv Evans. Future loves to romp around the house with his variety of well-loved toys, observe his surroundings, and take cat (pup?) naps in class. His show-stopper command is, of course, his “visit.” Liv accredits her opportunity with Future to the raisers who taught her what it was all about, and to the amazing growth of TUSTEP. Future matriculates to advanced training in May 2019, just a week before Liv graduates with her degree in Public Health and International Development. 

Ramsey and Kara Johnson

Ramsey is the oldest of the 6th gen pups, and makes sure everyone knows that with his grandfather personality. While he loves to bounce around like a bunny and fetch tennis balls, you can catch him napping for the other 18 hours of the day. Between snoozes you can catch him asking for belly rubs and ice cubes. He is not always a fan of snuggling with humans, but he goes out of his way to snuggle with other pups (in which he walks across the room to lay directly on the dog). He is being raised by junior Kara Johnson, who is double majoring in neuroscience and sociology. Her favorite thing about Ramsey is that if you ask him any question, he will do a shake.

Wailor and Ilana Baker

Ilana Baker is TUSTEP’s Vice President and Wailor’s puppy raiser. She is a sophomore from Evanston, Illinois, studying cell bio and public health. Ilana has wanted to raise a service dog since she was seven years old, and is thrilled to have the opportunity to do so during her time at Tulane. In addition to TUSTEP, Ilana is also Philanthropy Chair of her sorority, a member of Tulane Jewish Leaders, and serves as president of Tulane Lives Beyond Breast Cancer. Her favorite part of puppy raising is the excitement of watching Wailor improve with his commands and socialization. Her favorite thing about Wailor is that his tail is always wagging—whether he’s working, playing, or even resting. She is so proud of how far he has already come, and how he continues to learn and grow each day. She hopes that Wailor will go on to become a service dog and change someone’s life, but she knows that whatever happens, the world is a better place because of him. 

Atticus and Kai Pamir

Kai Pamir is a sophomore majoring in cell and molecular biology and minoring in German. She is raising Atticus, who has a lot of energy for his friends but a little less energy for working. Atticus’s favorite command is speak and her favorite thing about Atticus his over friendly (consistently kissing) nature with other dogs. She loves raising Atticus because it is so fulfilling to see Atticus’s small successes and steps towards his bigger goal. When Atticus is not training in New Orleans, he’s home in Massachusetts hanging out with Kai and his 3 dog step brothers.

Warrior and Connor Malark

Connor Malark is a sophomore majoring in Neuroscience with a minor in Marine Biology. He is raising Warrior, a compassionate pup who is always looking to make new friends and never turns down a good adventure. He loves joining Connor on kayaking, paddle boarding, and fishing excursions. When he’s not out exploring, Warrior is a passionate and quick learner. His favorite commands are heel and side. Warrior has taught Connor be to patient, yet confident in everything he does and to greet each day with joy. Training him has given Connor true fulfillment and he is excited to continue their journey together until he goes on to have a much greater impact on someone else’s life.