Welcome to the Miner Challenge Leadership Team Page! Scroll down to meet the team for Miner Challenge 2017-18!

Jessica HaywoodProgram Administrator


  Jessica Haywood is originally from the mountains of North Carolina and graduated with a B.S. in Spanish Education from Appalachian State University. She taught Spanish in NC public schools for three years and worked with students from Kindergarten through 12th grade.  Jessica then moved to Oregon where she completed her Master's degree in College Student Services Administration at Oregon State University.  She has always had a passion for alternative break programs and went on her first trip as a freshman in college.  She enjoys creative pursuits such as crafting and photography, and loves international travel.  Jessica advises the Miner Challenge program and the Miner Challenge Mentors.

Top Strengths: Learner, Ideation, Strategic, Input, Adaptability

Office: 226 Havener Center | Phone: 573.341.7981 | Email: haywoodj@mst.edu


Jake Hale- Miner Challenge Mentor for Leadership and Recruitment

Jake is a graduate student at S&T and is pursuing an MS in Engineering Management. His research is looking into the feasibility of renewable energy projects throughout rural communities in the Midwest. He joined the Miner Challenge family as a Trip Leader for team Colorado in 2016. Some of his interests include hiking, conversations over coffee, long drives, and sustainable development efforts. As an undergraduate, Jake received minors in sustainability, humanitarian engineering and science, and global studies. These efforts culminated in a comprehensive, three-week field study of rural water treatment technologies in Guatemala.

Top Strengths: Communication, Woo, Positivity, Belief, Includer

Office: 218 Havener Center |  Email: jmhy96@mst.edu


Elizabeth Oberley - Miner Challenge Mentor for Marketing and Fundraising

Elizabeth is a junior studying civil engineering. She was a participant on the 2016 Miner Challenge trip to Hammond, LA and led the 2017 trip to Anchorage, AK.  Miner Challenge is her favorite organization on campus. She loves her hometown of Virginia Beach, VA, Leslie Knope, and Matt and Kim concerts. She spent her whole life torn between wanting to be a princess or an astronaut, but unfortunately has no royal blood and is not tall enough to be a pilot. She hopes that one day she will have a job that is just as much fun as being a princess astronaut.

Top Strengths: Analytical, Discipline, Competition, Focus, Includer

Office: 218 Havener Center |  Email: eaopq4@mst.edu


2017-18 Trip Leaders 

Alison Bader

Ali Bader is a Junior at Missouri S&T, dual-majoring in Architectural and Civil Engineering. She is returning this fall from a spring co-op with ARCO Construction. In her free time, Ali likes to run, watch movies, and get involved with her sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha. Ali is incredibly excited to get back involved with the Miner Challenge after her trip to Colorado Springs, CO in 2016, addressing poverty at a local food bank. She hopes to be able to provide for her team as meaningful of an experience as she had on her first trip.

Top Strengths: Ideate, Responsibility, Intellection, Consistency, Relator


Delanie Degraeve

Delanie DeGraeve is a Junior studying Mechanical Engineering with an emphasis in Mechanical Design and Analysis. She spent her first few years at S&T involved in Engineers without Borders, Chancellor’s Leadership Academy and a Panhellenic sorority. She loves running, window shopping with friends, guacamole, and painting. Last year she was a member of Miner Challenge’s International Nicaragua Team. Interacting with the Santa Julia community helped her realize nothing is more fulfilling than selflessly serving and helping others grow. This program provided her with an eye opening experience that guided her to identify her passions and she looks forward to providing other participants with similar encounters as a Trip Leader.

Top Strengths: Deliberative, Includer, Positivity, Belief, Discipline


Hannah Butler

Hannah is a junior in ceramic engineering. She was on the Bastrop, Texas (a.k.a Forest People) Miner Challenge trip last year. She was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. When she gets free time, she loves reading, binge watching Netflix, and telling people terrible jokes that she finds funny. (What do you call a sleep walking nun? A Roman Catholic!) She has a slight addiction to Game of Thrones and coffee. Besides Miner Challenge, she is involved in Greek life on campus being a Rho Gamma for Panhellenic Council.

Top Strengths: Activator, Harmony, Individualization, Responsibility, Ideate


Kaitlyn Loucks

Kaitlyn is a junior majoring in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. In her free time, Kaitlyn loves photography, watching (and playing) sports, and helping out her community through service. Kaitlyn's experience with Miner Challenge includes her first trip as a participant to Santa Julia, Nicaragua. Kaitlyn cannot wait to see what this year has in store for Miner Challenge and is excited about the opportunity to lead a group of students to do some awesome things! 

Top Strengths: Belief, Positivity, Developer, Ideate, Harmony


Zachary Hart

Zachary Hart was born in Canada, grew up in Houston, Texas, and decided to attend Missouri S&T to study Mechanical Engineering.  He loves to travel and is returning to the Miner Challenge program as a sophomore.  He was inspired to become a trip leader while interacting with the amazing individuals he met and became friends with, while working on disaster relief with the San Marcos Miner Challenge team last year.  He hopes that by becoming a trip leader that he can help further the trend of excellence exhibited by the Miner Challenge Program and inspire a group of students to get out of their comfort zones and try something new.  When Zach is not participating in Miner Challenge, he enjoys doing everything sports and outdoors, especially playing basketball.  He also loves all different types and varieties of music and has a huge obsession with Marvel Movies.  

Top Strengths: Significance, Futuristic, Responsibility, Woo, Belief