Meet The Team

Meet the team of student and professional staff behind CAFE! As a team, we undergo extensive and ongoing training through in-house curriculum and Next Gen Personal Finance (NGPF) certification courses.

Questions? Just want to talk to a real person? Email us!

Michael Budke

Program Manager

Throughout my career, I have learned the important role that finances play in students’ ability to be in school and to graduate on time – that’s why I love working as a program manager in the CAFE. I began my career in higher education at Linn-Benton Community College as a financial aid advisor and work-study coordinator. I then transitioned to a role at Chemeketa Community College leading College Inside, a program for incarcerated students held inside three correctional facilities that was largely funded by the Second Chance Pell Grant. After graduating 65.2% of our initial cohort and producing a recidivism rate of just 4.8%, I was able to advocate for Pell restoration in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 and served on the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA) Work Group responsible for its implementation. A fun fact about me is that I have camped with the same group of friends every summer since high school.

Prem Mathew


I have been at the College of Business since 2004, and serve as its Associate Dean for Undergraduate Student Development (in addition to being CAFE director). My particular passion is around undergraduate educational access and student support. This is reflected in my roles in building CAFE, spearheading the college’s efforts in building an award-winning education-to-career curriculum model (Blueprint) integrated with the business/design core curriculum; leading multiple K12 partnerships that target communities that are historically underrepresented in higher education; and establishing robust college-level retention and emergency-based scholarship processes. My background in Finance (undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania – Wharton School, PhD from the University and Chartered Financial Analyst, CFA charterholder) has equipped me with the foundation to build CAFE into a comprehensive financial support and education platform for the OSU community, and am excited to lead this charge! A fun fact about me: all four members of my immediate family were born in different countries (Kuwait, India, Canada, US).

Kayleen Salchenberg

Program Manager, Advisor, and Instructor

I have worked for nearly a decade with and for OSU students on all things 'paying for college;' first as a financial-aid advisor role; then with transfer student services and now as a program manager in the College of Business. It is a professional and personal passion of mine – a dream come true – that there is a service for financial literacy here at OSU. It brings me a lot of joy to help students and families debunk the complexities of paying for college. A fun fact about me: I lived in Nicaragua for two years, working remotely for CAFE and living out a lifelong dream. I now reside in Bend and enjoy walks, hikes, dogs, and mountain biking!

NGPF Certificates: Paying for College, Credit, Taxes, Investing, Banking and Budgeting, Behavioral Economics, and Insurance

Leela Varadharajan

Financial Planner

I have been teaching at OSU since 2013. I started my career in the corporate world as a financial modeler and risk analyst. Though the career experience opened doors for me, teaching has been more enjoyable and gratifying. I believe that financial literacy plays an important role in everybody's life, and the best time to acquire such knowledge is as a student. I am very excited to be part of the CAFE team helping students dream, design, and build a better financial future. With my educational background (M.S. in Computer Science and MBA in Finance from the University of Buffalo) I am confident I will be a valuable resource. I am also a Certified Financial Planner qualified to help individuals and families build their financial future. When not crunching numbers, I like traveling, hiking, and abseiling.

Lillian Avery

Peer Mentor | Finance & French

I am currently a Sophomore Accounting major with a double major in French. What drew me to CAFE is that I was interested in being able to interact and help a variety of students throughout the University, and to help them understand their finances and available opportunities to aid their financial success while attending Oregon State. A fun fact about myself is in high school I played on the Pétanque team and even lettered.

Maliyah Bowe

Peer Mentor | Major: Finance

I am currently a senior finance and business analytics major with an option in human resources analytics. CAFE is interesting to me because of the way that it helps students with their financial well-being. Being able to educate others on different financial topics is important for students' future success, and I wanted to be a part of that. After college, I plan on working in financial advising where I can help educate clients on how to best manage their finances. A fun fact about me: I have two cats named Muffin and Pickles.

Caleb Hall

Peer Mentor | Major: Finance

I’m a third-year student in the Finance program at Oregon State with an option in Financial Planning. I am passionate about helping students achieve their educational and financial goals by helping them understand the paying for college process, budgeting techniques, and resources that they have access to around campus. Aside from working at CAFE, I am also a member of the Investment Group at Oregon State. Post-graduation, I aim to pursue a career in Financial Planning and Wealth Management, with plans to earn my CFP certification.

Aaden Poindexter

Peer Mentor | Major: Business Information Systems

I am currently a senior studying Business Information Systems. After college, I plan on attending a Master of Business Administration program and then working as a consultant. I was drawn to CAFE due to the various financial knowledge I will learn and apply by helping other Oregonians with their financial goals. Finance has always been a passion for me and I love the idea of sharing this passion with fellow students and parents. A fun fact about me is that I love being in the sun, whether it is playing sports or relaxing on a beach!

Atom Rousseau

Peer Mentor | Major: Mechanical Engineer

I am currently a junior in the Mechanical Engineer major with a minor in Aerospace. What drew me to CAFE was my passion for financial literacy and the prospect of sharing my knowledge and engaging with fellow students. Financial literacy is important because it allows students to reach their financial goals and know how to properly manage their money. CAFE allows me to teach students by helping them comprehend financial matters and ultimately helping them accomplish their financial goals. I aim to empower students to make informed decisions about their finances, reduce financial stress, and achieve long-term financial stability. A fun fact about me is that I was born and raised in Costa Rica.

Marley Samuel

Peer Mentor | Major: Management

I am currently a fourth-year management major in the college of business. I was drawn CAFE because I know that paying for college is hard and I want to help students feel more confident making financial decisions in the future. When I graduate, I want to work at an organization that helps people in some way. As a member of the LGBTQ+ community myself, I understand how important inclusivity is, and I want everyone to know that CAFE is here to support anyone and everyone.

Rylie Vallo

Peer Mentor | Major: Accountancy

I am a fourth year Accounting student in the College of Business. I'm passionate about financial literacy and helping students pay for college. Helping students find the resources they need to succeed and achieve their career and financial goals has always been something I like doing. After college, I hope to earn my CPA and pursue a career in public accounting.