Our Team

 
LEADERS
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Master Nicholas Yates
Head Coach

Master Nick Yates is a 5th degree black belt certified by the World Taekwondo Headquarters. He was the US Open silver medalist in 2009 and 2016, and has competed at the international level and trained in Korea. Master Nick additionally has a decade of experience as head instructor of a Taekwondo school.   

We are incredibly grateful to be coached by Master Nick as well as our team of dedicated student instructors!

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Melody Gao
President

Class of 2023

Hometown: Folsom, CA

Academic Concentration: History

Year Started Taekwondo: 2007

Fun Bit: Tennis player, also I love to take naps

Priya Juarez
Captain
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Class of 2023

Hometown: Houston, TX

Academic Concentration: ECE and BME

Year Started Taekwondo: 2009

Fun Bit: I’m Indian, Mexican, Korean, and Japanese

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Emma Evans-Nolet
Secretary

Class of 2024

Hometown: Baltimore, MD

Academic Concentration: ME and CS

Year Started Taekwondo: 2020

Fun Bit: Spent spring 2022 in Berlin

 

Kathleen Chen
Treasurer
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Class of 2023

Hometown: Irmo, SC

Academic Concentration: ECE and CS (Psychology Minor)

Year Started Taekwondo: 2015

Fun Bit: I like to eat lemons and limes :)

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Katie Zhang
VP of Programming

Class of 2024

Hometown: Potomac, MD 

Academic Concentration: Biology (Visual Arts Minor, Pre-Health)

Year Started Taekwondo: 2020

Fun Bit: I do calligraphy and my art is featured in the official Dear Evan Hansen musical book 

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Nathan Huang
VP of Outreach

Class of 2024

Hometown: Los Altos, CA

Academic Concentration: CS

Year Started Taekwondo: 2020

Fun Bit: Most inflexible in the club

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Jonathan Shi
VP of Communications

Class of 2024

Hometown:  Redwood City, CA 

Academic Concentration: Biology

Year Started Taekwondo: 2010

Fun Bit: Doesn't believe in time zones

 

Meera Patel
Safety Officer
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Class of 2025

Hometown: Charlotte, NC

Academic Concentration: Undecided (Pre-med) 

Year Started Taekwondo: 2013

Fun Bit: Kicks people on accident

 
ALUMNI
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Daniel Ryan
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Captain

Class of 2022

Daniel graduated from Duke's Trinity College of Arts and Sciences in May 2022 with a B.S. in biology, a minor in Chinese language, and a "Science and the Public" certificate. A four-year member of the club, Daniel served as an instructor his sophomore, junior, and senior years, the VP of Outreach his sophomore year, and the club Captain his senior year. He moves to Bethesda, Maryland, where he will work as post-baccalaureate researcher at the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health, with hopes of attending medical school beginning in 2024.

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Rayhan Jhanji
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President

Class of 2022

Rayhan served as President during the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 seasons. Previously, he served as Vice-President of Communications during the 2019-2020 season. He graduated in 2022 with a BA in History. After graduation, Rayhan will be working as a Teach for America corps member prior to attending medical school.

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Florence Liu
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Treasurer

Class of 2022

Florence was VP of Programming for 1 year and Treasurer for 2 years. She was also a taekwondo instructor and taught beginners for 2 years. Florence graduated with a B.S. in computer science and a minor in physics. She will be working for Amazon in Dallas post-graduation!.

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Juhyoung Lee
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Member

Class of 2022

"I studied biomedical engineering and computer science at Duke! I'll be joining YouTube in fall 2022 at Mountain View."

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Samuel Thompson
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Instructor

Class of 2022

Samuel worked as an intermediate instructor for 3 years and will be graduating with a  B.S. in computer science and mathematics! Post graduation, he will be living in Santa Monica, California as a software engineer for Amazon.

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Duc Tran

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Captain

Class of 2021

Duc Tran joined Duke Taekwondo in 2017 and was the captain of the club in the 2020-2021 season. He graduated in 2021 with a BS in Electrical and Computer Engineering and in Computer Science. After graduation, he will be working as a Software Developer at General Motors in Atlanta. 

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Teresa Mao

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Captain

Class of 2020

Teresa was captain of the club in 2019-2020, sharing with both instructors and students her years of taekwondo experience and passion. She graduated with a BS in Biomedical Engineering and in Computer Science and will be working as a Software Engineer in Seattle. 

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Caroline Wang

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President

Class of 2020

Caroline was not only club president 2019-2020, but also previously served as the club's Social Chair and VP of Programming. She graduated in 2020 with a BS in Computer Science and a minor in Statistics. After graduation, she will be working as an Associate for Galatea Associates in Durham, NC.

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Heesu Park

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Secretary

Class of 2020

Heesu was treasurer of the club in the 2019-2020 season and secretary in 2018-2019. She graduated in 2020 with a BS in Biology, BA in Spanish, and a minor in Chemistry. After graduation, she will be working in pediatric research in New York for a gap year before attending medical school. she and fellow alum and friend, Alice Chen, hope to open a pediatric practice together in the future!

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Shayal Vashisth

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President

Class of 2019

Shayal began her taekwondo training in 2011 and joined Duke Taekwondo as soon as she arrived on campus. As a sophomore, she earned a silver medal for poomsae at Nationals, and was club president in her junior year. After graduating from Duke in 2019 with a B.S. in neuroscience and a minor in creative writing, she immediately began pursuing her PhD at UT Southwestern. She is forever grateful for the family she found in the team.

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Trishul Nagenalli

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Class of 2020

"I was a communications chair for TKD during my sophomore year. I came from a Karate background and the team helped me and supported me so much to adapt. TKD introduced me to amazing leaders and friends I’ve kept through all of Duke. I’m eternally grateful to the club for it. I’m graduating with a dual degree in ECE/CS and will be heading to a software startup called Clumio in the Bay Area."

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Carol Xia

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Class of 2020

"Hi! My name is Carol and I studied Mechanical Engineering in my undergrad. I didn’t have any taekwondo experience before coming to college, but decided to go to a few practices with some friends who lived in my dorm. Flash forward to senior year, and I was still in the club and living with those same friends. Taekwondo has been a great experience, full of rewarding practices, fun retreats, and team bonding. I’m so glad I decided to go to that first practice during my freshman year!"

Sean McCroskey

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Vice President

Class of 2017

Sean McCroskey was the vice president of the club for the 2016-7 season. He also helped our club expand and taught our new students. Sean was a model for what a Duke Taekwondo student could become. Having never done Taekwondo before college, he learned quickly and became one of our best. He graduated in 2017 with a double degree in English and Japanese. Sean is currently teaching in Japan.

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Alice Chen

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Secretary

Class of 2019

Alice Chen was secretary of the club for the 2017-2018 season. She graduated in 2019 with a BS in Biology and a BA in Gender, Sexuality & Feminist Studies. Beginning taekwondo in 2012, she continued it because she loves the exercise and the people she has met. She is currently taking a gap year doing clinical research in the Yale OB/GYN Department before attending medical school. She and fellow teammate and friend, Heesu Park, hope to open a pediatric practice in the future!

Brendan Ryu

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President

Class of 2017

Brendan Ryu was the president of the the club for the 2016-2017 season. He helped our club expand to include many new members. Brendan grew up in Pittsburgh, PA and has practiced for Taekwondo for many years. He was instrumental in helping many of our new students learn Taekwondo and eventually win medals at Nationals. He graduated with a B.S in Neuroscience in May 2017 and will be back at Duke this year doing research

Eric Mastrolonardo

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Vice President

Class of 2016

Eric Mastrolonardo was the Vice President of Duke Taekwondo, graduating in 2016 with a B.S. in Biology. Eric plans on pursuing his passion for medicine and continuing his humanitarian work abroad.  

Jesse Madnick

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Class of 2017

Jesse Madnick is a fourth-year math graduate student at Stanford University. Jesse also taught mathematics to undergraduates under the guidance of both Rick Schoen and Robert Bryant at Duke University. His interests span many areas of mathematics such as differential geometry. In his free time, he enjoys taking a break by practicing taekwondo, as he has done for the past 20 years. 

Brian Pegno

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President

Class of 2016

A native of New York, Brian Pegno was President of Duke Taekwondo and Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity, each for two years. After graduating  Magna Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa with a B.S. in Biology, Brian now works as an Incoming Associate Consultant at Bain & Company. ​

Koichi Kawaii 

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Class of 2016

Koichi graduated from Duke Taekwondo and Duke Law School with a Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree in 2016. Koichi plans on moving to NYC in the summer of 2016 for an internship at a law firm until July 2017. Afterwards, Koichi plans on returning to work in Japan. 

Emily Randle

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Publicity Chair/ Webmaster

Class of 2016

Emily Randle was the Publicity Chair and Webmaster of Duke Taekwondo during the 2015-2016 season, graduating in 2016 with a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology and Minors in Arabic and Neuroscience. Emily now works as a research lab assistant in Tupler Lab and for the US government. 

Stephanie Colorado

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Class of 2016

Stephanie Colorado earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Public Policy Analysis and Psychology from Duke University, where she also participated as a part of the Duke Taekwondo Club. Stephanie received the Yellow-Belt Gold Medal at Collegiate Nationals and now studies law at Columbia Law School. 

Cameron Aubin

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President

Class of 2014

Cameron was captain of Duke Martial Arts Team from  2013-2014 and received his Bachelor of Science in Engineering (B.S.E), Biomedical Engineering in 2014. Cameron now is studying for his Masters of Science (M.S.) in Mechanical Engineering at Cornell University. 

Titania Juang (PhD)

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Safety Officer, Class of 2015

Dr. Tatania Juang was Duke Taekwondo’s Safety Officer for the 2014-2015 school year, graduating with a PhD in Medical Physics in 2015. After studying optical bio-imaging in the Radiation Oncology Department at Duke, Dr. Juang is now a medical physics resident at Stanford University. 

Mary Claire Lark

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Social Chair

Class of 2015

 

Mary Claire Lark graduated with a Bachelor of Science on May 10th, 2015. 

Kaitlin Gladney

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Vice President

Class of 2014

Kaitlin Gladney was president of Duke Taekwondo and graduated with  a BS in Psychology  and a degree in English in 2014. Kaitlin now works as the founder of Parallax Creative, an artist manager for indie-folker Skout, and as a photographer/ videographer, and writer.

Abraham Lee

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President

Class of 2013

Abraham Lee was captain of Duke Taekwondo and received his Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Economics, Political Science and Japanese at Duke University in 2013. Previously, he also competed as an individual in the 2012 Korean Open. More recently, Abraham represented team U.S.A. at the 2014 World University Championships. Abraham is now pursuing his Doctor of Law (J.D. ) degree at NYU.  ​

PAST TEAMS

2021-2022

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2020-2021

Duke TKD 2021 Belt Test

2019-2020

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2018-2019

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2017-2018

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2016-2017

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2015-2016

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2013-2014

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2012-2013

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2011-2012

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2010-2011

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