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Academic Advising

Outstanding Academic Advisors

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Academic Advising

Students can find their advisor contact information on the homepage of their myWCU account.

Outstanding Academic Advisors

2017 Award Winners

Advising is a crucial component for student success. West Chester University proudly honors its 2016-2017 Outstanding Advisors.

Click on each name to read advisees’ testimonials.

College of Arts and Humanities

Dr. Michael Burns
English

He is always supportive of the classes I want to take, and helps make them work into my requirements.

Dr. Maria Cabrera
Languages and Cultures

As an advisor, Dr. Cabrera exhibits compassion, tenacity, and competency. She goes above and beyond what the position calls for. When I was trying to study abroad last semester, she helped me get there. She even gave me her parents contact information in case I ran into any issues while in Spain. She truly cares about her students and it shows.

Professor Constance Case
Theatre and Dance

I'm proud to have called Constance my advisor and mentor for the past three years. Constance shows dedication and passion to her craft and her students. In addition to her duties as a professor, Constance also serves on the Recruitment Committee to the Department of Theatre and Dance and as an advisor to Alpha Psi Omega, the theatre honors fraternity. Because of Constance, I have had the opportunity to explore my passion for costume design, leading me to pursue design as a career. She continually pushes me to look at the world with a curious heart and mind.

Dr. Kevin Dean
Communication Studies

Dr. Dean exists in two "worlds" at this university, working as both the head of the Honors College and as faculty in the Communication Studies Department. Nevertheless, he manages to give 100% to students in either department and those students who are in both. On a more personal level, Dr. Dean has guided me through WCU since even before my arrival in Fall 2013. He has always been there when I need help and guidance. He has pushed me to take on opportunities that have greatly enriched my experience at the university. He even recently wrote a letter of recommendation for me to American University, which surely played no small part in my acceptance. Dr. Dean is undoubtedly a worthy candidate of this award.

Dr. Jonathan Friedman
History/Holocaust Genocide Studies

Professor Friedman's enthusiasm and passion is unrivaled and contagious. Not only is he a great professor, but he also is a great advisor. He takes care of all of us in the HGS masters program, helps us figure out all our options to maximize our educational experience. He is constantly fighting for our program and giving us opportunities to engage with the larger community.

Dr. Roger Gatchet
Communication Studies

Dr. Gatchet has been excellent in advising me prior to registering for classes. He makes sure I know what I need to graduate and always has a genuine concern for my issues. Dr. Gatchet has done an excellent job while advising me through my time here at West Chester.

Dr. Karin Gedge
History

She is a great advisor. I was scared of switching my major and she made my freshman year so easy! I think that she has lead me on a good path and I couldn't thank her enough! That's why she deserves this award! She's also super funny.

Dr. Gabrielle Halko
English

Dr. Halko understands what it means to be human and she is unapologetically honest. It takes a certain type of human to be so truthful. She takes the time of the day to care about me as an individual, not just as a student she has to advise. Not to mention, she writes some BEAUTIFUL poetry.

Dr. Ola Kopacz
Communication Studies

Dr. Kopacz made my transition into WCU as a transfer student as smooth as possible. She helped me get over the stress of scheduling classes and was always available to help me whenever I needed it. As a transfer student, I was behind on a lot of credits I needed in order to graduate on time. Dr. Kopacz selected me out of a large pool of applicants onto her research team for an independent research study, which not only allowed me to earn enough credits to graduate on time, but it also gave me valuable experience with doing academic research. Furthermore, Dr. Kopacz was generous enough to write recommendation letters for me during my process of applying to graduate schools. Her encouragement during the entire process helped me get to where I am today. Next Fall, I will be starting a Master's program at a top 10 school for Aerospace Engineering, and I wouldn't have been able to make it this far this fast without her. She truly deserves to be recognized for her outstanding character and advising.

Dr. Edward Lordan
Communication Studies

I'd like to give the West Chester University community some knowledge about this particular professor. After 2 years of knowing Dr. Lordan, I have had the honor to see his love of learning and dedication to each course he teaches in the classroom and behind-the-scenes. While he may not technically be my "Academic Advisor", he has been my advisor on life, career choices, and who I am as a person - or better yet, who I CAN be. He has helped shape the foundation on which I built my confidence- one of the greatest gifts anyone could have ever provided. Through his knowledge and passion, I have seen what it takes to thrive professionally and personally. West Chester University has a gem, one who deserves to be valued and honored for their work on campus.

Dr. Graham MacPhee
English

When I approached Dr. MacPhee with interest in the Honors College's seminar program, even though it was not his area of specialty, he gladly spent an hour discussing it with me to the best of his knowledge of it and my schedule, as well as recommending contacts and application times. In addition, he is generally thorough and personable, and always happy to discuss our mutual interest, literature.

Dr. Rodney Mader
English

He helped me when I was in a great deal of distress. Not just academically but mentally and emotionally as well. He helped me in diffusing my situation in school and my personal situations by introducing me to the counseling office. He took the time out of his day to walk me there and get me signed up. He also takes the time to check up on me and make meetings. He is one adviser who reaches out to you, instead of waiting for you to reach out to him. He really understands the two-sided relationship between himself and his students.

Dr. Ovidu Marinescu
Applied Music

He is friendly and always knows what to say.

Dr. Julian Onderdonk
Music Theory, History, and Composition

Dr. Onderdonk never misses out on an opportunity to offer academic or career advice to a student who is in need of it. Because he consistently shows genuine interest in the lives and well-being of those around him, students gravitate toward him for guidance. His encouraging attitude both inside and outside of the classroom is well known throughout Swope, and I doubt you could find a single music student who would find him unworthy of this recognition.

Dr. Ashley Patriarca
English

I switched my advisor to Prof. Patriarca last semester, and it was the best decision I ever made. She is so helpful whenever I need her, and she will always guide me in the best direction. She is so kind, caring, and the best advisor I could've asked for!

Dr. Timothy Ray
English

He cares. He responds quickly and effectively to emails. He is willing go out of his way to help.

Dr. Kimberly Reighley
Applied Music

Dr. Reighley gives so much of her time, despite a very busy schedule, to help logistics of school and non-school related concerns and questions.

Dr. Laura Renzi
English

She is very knowledgeable about the B.S.Ed. program. When I switched majors, she laid out my entire academic career for me. She's helped me with any and every issue. She always makes herself available. She said reliable and hard working.

Dr. Pauline Schmidt
English

Dr. Schmidt has been absolutely wonderful in answering my many questions concerning questions about scheduling and when to take what courses. She gives honest advice and much insight from the department. I always look forward to conversations with her because she is friendly, knowledgeable about her role and aware of what the BSEd English students' needs are, and always willing to help -even going out of her way to do so! Dr. Schmidt is not my advisor, and yet I feel very comfortable in going to her for help when necessary. She has been so helpful in assisting me as I progress within the BSEd English major!

Professor James Scythes
History

All around great advice and support.

Dr. Eleanor Shevlin
English

Providing a "brief" description of my nominee is close to impossible but I'll try. My academic advisor, Dr. Shevlin, goes to infinity and beyond during Fall, Spring and Summer semesters. As an uninspired and lost freshman in her English 194 class, Dr. Shevlin made herself my advisor to guide me towards success even when I didn't want it. I joined the military sophomore year and Dr. Shevlin stayed up past her bed time to help schedule my upcoming classes over phone. She also encouraged me to apply for the Summer Undergraduate Research Institute last summer. Hesitant that I wouldn't be accepted, Dr. Shevlin instilled hope and confidence. When accepted, as a duo, I was beyond blessed. Dr. Shevlin is the type of person who will put her work aside and stay on campus past hours (even when she commutes from Washington, D.C) to help with a poster board for a conference the upcoming day. I went from having F's on my transcript to making the Dean's list each semester, presenting research at conferences, and traveling across the country all thanks to this beautiful woman. There can't be anyone at WCU more deserving of this award than Dr. Eleanor Shevlin.

Dr. Janneken Smucker
History

I am a junior secondary social studies major so Dr. Janneken essentially has to play the role of a history advisor and an education advisor. She has been perfect all three years helping me align my goals and schedule. I plan to graduate on time due to her which is not always normal now. Also she has always been a support for when I need to bounce ideas for papers or other assignments. She has always given me great feedback and been there when I need her. Finally, she averages like a five minute response time on emails, which I think is worthy of an award by itself.

Professor Kate Stewart
Art and Design

Professor Stewart takes the time to get to know you and helps plan your schedule to fit what you enjoy or what might positively challenge you. She also encourages you to do what you want to do as opposed to pushing you toward what she thinks is best. She really has your best interest at heart.

Dr. Rajvee Subramanian
Communication Studies

He's helpful, friendly, insightful, kind, and funny.

Dr. Philip Thompsen
Communication Studies

He will go out of his way for a student to make sure that they achieve what they want at West Chester University. He is very patient and is willing to do whatever it takes to make his students successful.

Dr. Victoria Tischio
English

As a veteran suffering from service-connected disabilities, Dr. Tischio has been fundamental in my studies at West Chester University. The very fact that I am still here is proof enough of her commitment to the student veteran community.

Dr. Elizabeth Urban
History

Dr. Urban cares so deeply for her students, and wants success for them. She shows this in class as well in her advising. She really tries to help make academic plans that focus on long term career and academic goals. She helps students figure out what their goals are and how best to achieve them. Dr. Urban shares her own personal journey and struggles in an effort to help her students. This helps students see that not all journeys are easy, not all journeys are the same, and hard work pays off. Dr. Urban is friendly, helpful, and overall an amazing person.

College of Business and Public Management

Professor Gerry Abdesaken
Economics and Finance

Gerry is the most intelligent person I came across at West Chester. I am grateful that he is my advisor. He was also beyond helpful with scheduling and making sure he helped with internships and jobs as well.

Dr. Thomas Andrews
Economics and Finance

Dr. Andrews is a very friendly and extremely helpful! An easy guy to talk to and get along with, and he also helped me make one of the best decisions of my life by dual-majoring. He genuinely cares about his students, and advisees! Sometimes I want to just drop by and say hello because he's an awesome guy!

Dr. Richard Barndt
Accounting

Dr. Barndt is always available and always has input/recommendations to provide for scheduling courses.

Dr. Mary Brewster
Criminal Justice

Helpful, easy going, easy to ask questions too, good teacher and helps every student like they are her child

Dr. Lisa Calvano
Management

Dr. Calvano is always extremely helpful with any questions regarding major requirements, class selection, graduation, and more, no matter how small! She has always responded to my emails within 24 hours, which has been such a great help in easing my stress level. Over the past year she has also given me great advice about course selection. More importantly, Dr. Calvano is inherently kind-hearted and it is easy to tell that she truly cares about her students and her career.

Dr. Kristen Crossney
Public Policy and Administration

Dr. Crossney is an incredibly dynamic and responsive individual, who always offers such professional and thoughtful advice.

Professor Patricia Diggin
Marketing

Not only has Professor Diggin helped me succeed in the classroom but outside of the classroom as well. She has given me advice on summer internships, projects, and future careers. She is a highly knowledgeable and relatable professor. Her students respect her on many levels and I can't think of an advisor/professor that is more deserving of a nomination.

Dr. Kelly Fisher
Management

She met with me for the first time and helped me realize I was eligible for the Business Honors Society, that I have a huge advantage taking INB up as a minor, and helped me make my schedule. She was super interactive with me and gave me resources and literally walked me down the hall to introduce me to another employee to help me. She went above and beyond what I expected when all I asked was for help with my tentative schedule. She was extremely kind and happy for all that I have accomplished so far!

Dr. Michael Guiry
Marketing

Professor Guiry is very kind whenever I meet with him and is always prepared. I feel like I can ask him any questions and he knows all the answers. He makes me feel confident in the classes I need and that I am on the right track. He helped me be on the right track and I am very grateful for that because I would've been lost! He is very nice and definitely cares about all of his students. I haven't known him for long, but he has been a great advisor and seems like a great person! He deserves to be recognized because whenever I meet with him he's in a great mood and that makes my day better.

Dr. Ebru Isgin
Economics and Finance

Dr. Isgin is always readily available, helpful, concise and positive. Dr. Isgin always has the best interests of students at heart and always wants to see us succeed.

Dr. Dottie Ives-Dewey
Geography and Planning

Dr. Ives-Dewey has consistently been a wonderful asset to my academic career at West Chester. She is a thoughtful and active listener who always makes time to hear my thoughts, concerns, and ideas. As a graduate student who one days hopes to follow a similar career path in planning, Dr. Ives-Dewey is an excellent role model and example of the kind of professional planner I aspire to be.

Dr. Orhan Kara
Economics and Finance

Dr. Orhan truely cares about his students and goes above and beyond to help them succeed!

Dr. Kyle Kelly
Economics and Finance

Dr. Kelly is always there to help me with any situation. He takes his time when explaining things to me so that I can fully understand, unlike other advisors. I'm very fortunate to have him as my advisor.

Ms. Elizabeth McElroy
Pre-Business Advising

I wanted to recognize her for her outstanding commitment to helping me correct courses that were not transferred. She offered continued assistance with scheduling while waiting for courses to transfer, without which I would not have been able to schedule courses that continue me on my education path. Thank you!

Ms. Kelly Peltier
Pre-Business Advising

Kelly is incredibly friendly and if it wasn't for her diligence in helping me with scheduling and other advising, I would be completely lost right now.

Dr. Peter Oehlers
Accounting

He is absolutely superb and always available. He guided me through all my years at WCU, and I am greatly thankful to him.

Dr. Amanda Olejarski
Public Policy and Administration

Dr. Olejarski is very passionate about the subject matter and more importantly extremely interested in creating a great student experience for all students in the MPA program at WCU.

Dr. Cassandra Reyes
Criminal Justice

Dr. Reyes is not only my advisor but my teacher. She always answers my emails quickly and always giving me the attention I need. If she cannot answer a question she always points me in the right direction on where I can find my answer. She is always prepared for our meetings and I always leave feeling ready and prepared for the next semester! I am never nervous about picking the wrong classes! I know that I am right on track with my academics and I dedicate it all to her!

Dr. Paul Rotenberry
Management

Dr. Rotenberry has mentored students (myself included) through research and grant initiatives, career path exploration, graduate school admission and navigation, and training and the development of life skills. His professional achievements speak for themselves, as former Department of Management Chair and faculty chair for the SIE honors fraternity, and yet I do not think he has received recognition for the countless hours he has spent mentoring myself and others both academically and in life.

Ms. Lauren Swift
Pre-Business Advising

She always helped me get into the classes I needed! She was also always easy to schedule with and sweet!

Dr. Shih-Ching Wang
Marketing

Dr. Wang has been such an incredible motivator. She pushes me to excel at this school. I really appreciate how much she motivates and encourages me, because I really feel that I've been more successful in the college environment because of her.

Dr. Xiaowei Zhu
Management

Very helpful and always helps regardless of appointment or not. Best college advisor I've had.

College of Education and Social Work

Dr. Eli DeHope
Social Work

Dr. DeHope always goes above and beyond when it comes to advising her students. She always gives thorough information and advice in regards to your current academic situation and information about graduate school and beyond. I transferred into the major during my junior year and Dr. DeHope has always been amazing when it came to registering for class.Each time we meet for advising, she always has given me exactly what I needed and helped me stay on track to graduate on time. She is kind, courteous, and an all around great advisor and professor.

Dr. Christa Gilliam
Social Work

Dr. Gilliam always shows interest in the student's education. She cares not only about academics but also our well-being. She goes through great lengths to give different options that would best fit your schedule. Dr. Gilliam always shows the students that she really cares by taking her time and listening to what you have to say.

Dr. Sarah Guinta
Literacy

Though my time working with Professor Giunta has been short, she has been a phenomenal support during my student teaching experience thus far. She regularly contacts her student teaching advisees with advice, guidance, and encouragement. Personally, I have found Professor Giunta to be a supportive staff member, eager to prepare her students for their teaching careers.

Dr. Lisa Gordon
Literacy

She genuinely wants you to succeed. She's so convenient to get in touch with and she has the best personality. I had a different advisor before Dr. Gordon and she was nothing like Dr. Gordon. She didn't make you feel welcomed in her office, or cared about, but Dr. Gordon overall is just a great person and a great advisor.

Dr. Susan Hicks
Special Education

As a graduate student who works full time, is a parent, and coaches, I have a hard time scheduling classes. I also have a lot of questions. She promptly answers all email questions and will answer questions via phone when I need something. I really appreciate it. It makes me feel like more of an individual in my program.

Dr. Jacqueline Hodes
Counselor Education

Dr. Hodes is an 'advisor to all' who is dedicated to not only making sure that her students receive the help they need with respect to staying on the right academic path, but recognizing the importance of experiences that take place outside of the classes too. Dr. Hodes goes above and beyond to always encourage her students to 'always say yes to opportunities'. On a weekly basis, Dr. Hodes sends an email with various opportunities to students in the program. Dr. Hodes always makes time to talk to students who may be experiencing difficulty-- she lets students know that she understands and offers solutions. Dr. Hodes is an amazing professor, advisor and overall student affairs helper.

Dr. Travis Ingersoll
Social Work

Dr. Ingersoll is worthy of recognition because he helps prepare his advisees for their class schedules but also helps prepare them for careers after graduation. Since I have had him my first year here he has helped shape me into a better Social Worker and student. He encourages me to strive for bigger and better things, has offered to do research with me, and is a genuinely thoughtful and kind person. I have had him in the classroom where he makes sure all his students know his door is always open. He reaches out to advisees and makes sure that they know every minute that he is available around scheduling time. Dr. Ingersoll goes out of his way to make sure that his students are confident going into their semesters, and provides thoughtful advice. He also, as a social worker, makes sure to check in on his advisees during meetings to see how they are handling stress, schoolwork, etc. I am very grateful to have him as my advisor.

Dr. Karen Johnson
Professional and Secondary Education

Dr. Johnson goes above and beyond the call of duty as an advisor. She is always willing to help students, even those that she is not obligated to advise. She will do her best to get the necessary information for you so that you may make informed decisions about your education path, and will make sure you are getting the most out of your major. She is by far the most deserving professor in this major, and dare I say on this campus.

Dr. Heather Leaman
Early and Middle Grades Education

Dr. Leaman is a phenomenal person who always goes over and beyond for all of her students. She is dedicated, caring, and such a hard worker. I would highly recommend her for this award. In fact, I cannot think of anyone who deserves this more.

Dr. Lisa Lucas
Professional and Secondary Education

Dr. Lucas provides insightful information concerning upcoming important matters for all of us that are in the Post-Bacc. program. Whenever I have reached out to her, Dr. Lucas responds quickly and is also willing to meet with me if needed.

Dr. Lisa Lucas
Post-Baccalaureate Certification Program

Dr. Lucas was my first call to West Chester as I made the decision to return back to school for teaching. I could immediately tell she truly cared about her students as she helped me to navigate my new path. She made sure that my transition was smooth and she was always available for me to answer my (many) questions! She has always been supportive, kind, realistic, and patient. Her devotion to her post-bacc students as they make the life-changing decision to switch careers is one that I feel should be recognized!

Dr. Ryan Monaghan
Literacy

Dr. Monaghan made our EDR 347 class last semester an absolute pleasure to be in, but, more importantly, instructed in a manner I felt really assisted in my development as a teacher. Rather than teach by a book, Dr. Monaghan emphasized the necessity of experience with teaching and assisted all students in improving their abilities. Further, Dr. Monaghan made every effort to have all students feel welcomed, engaged, and appreciated. Overall, my experience in Dr. Monaghan's class is one I would love to experience again, perhaps with another teacher, but I am very unsure as to if that will actually happen.

Professor Susan-Wysor Nguema
Social Work

I am in my late 50's, and was very unsure of myself as I started West Chester University. Unfortunately, the very first advisor I spoke with was a little cold. As a new comer to W.C.U., I needed a little something extra, such as, patience, understanding and a warm helping hand. Not to mention a warm smile goes a long way. Susan offered all the above.

Dr. Vicky Patton
Early and Middle Grades Education

After transferring to West Chester University, my advisor has assisted me in enrolling in the courses I need for my major to graduate. In addition, she is extremely approachable and has provided recommendations to help me succeed.

Dr. Tina Selvaggi
Literacy

Dr. Selvaggi consistently goes above the expectations for an advisor to provide career advice and mentorship. She has helped me craft my passion for literacy which is a passion I will pass on to hundreds of students. She is dedicated to helping everyone succeed. I am truly thankful to call her my mentor and she deserves all of the recognition in the world.

Dr. Richard Voss
Social Work

He is always, always super encouraging of all of his students, no matter what path they decide to take in social work. He believes that we all have the potential to be amazing in our field of work, and that one person, any of us, can make a difference and change the world. Dr. Voss is very uplifting and always insightful and I'm extremely proud to have been his advisee and student for four semesters.

College of Health Sciences

Professor Dan Baer
Sports Medicine

This is the 2nd time I am nominating Dan, and for good reason. Dan has helped me through some of the most difficult decisions of my undergraduate career, and has never failed to be the one professor I can always count on. The dedication and compassion he shows to all of his students, as well as his desire to help us succeed, is unparalleled. Dan is a tremendous supporter and mentor, and I would not be where I am without him.

Dr. James Brenner
Health

Dr. Brenner went above and beyond his job description by assisting me in scheduling classes while I was gone for training in the army. I had close to no phone or internet access and when I did it was extremely limited. Dr. Brenner made scheduling my last semester of classes an easy process and always motivated me over the years to complete my degree.

Dr. Nicole Cattano
Sports Medicine

Nicky dedicates her life to the students of the athletic training program. She is very involved and her door is always opened for current students as well as alum.

Dr. Joanne Christaldi
Nutrition

Dr. Christaldi is extremely prompt with response to all emails, typically no longer than 4 hours before a response is given. Also she is very helpful during meetings to make sure that I am ready not only for the present/future semester we are discussing but also making sure that I am prepared for the next step in my college career. Dr. Christaldi is also very professional and pleasant.

Dr. Neil Curtis
Sports Medicine

He always helps me try to do the best thing for my future. He also cares about my grades in school and is a great advocate for the athletic training major making me honored to be a part of it.

Dr. Sharon Dejoy
Health

Dr. DeJoy is currently my academic advisor and previously my professor for several classes. I switched into my major my sophomore year through her help and guidance. Dr. DeJoy is very honest and realistic about deadlines. She is invested in her students and genuinely cares about their well being. She constantly provides an open space for her students to feel welcome and comfortable. I appreciate how caring Dr. DeJoy is and hope that she is recognized for her outstanding advisement.

Dr. Frank Fry
Kinesiology

Very personable and is always looking out for your best interest. Always willing to help and makes sure you're on track.

Dr. Alison Gardiner-Shires
Sports Medicine

Alison is very nice, organized, and helpful. She has also helped me through a really rough freshman year. Always punctual with email responses and always available during office hours.

Dr. Mary Beth Gilboy
Nutrition

As an undergraduate and graduate student, I was able to benefit from Dr. Gilboys hard work and dedication to advising her students. She has made sure I was on the right track and is quick with communication making the process easier.

Dr. Jeffrey Harris
Nutrition

When speaking to Dr. Harris you get the sense that he wants you to succeed. He is supportive and at the same time full of information. What truly makes him an outstanding advisor is that he makes time for everyone and encourages all students in the Nutrition Department to reach out to him, despite the fact that they have their own advisor. Also, his positive attitude reflects on the entire department.

Dr. Barbara Harrison
Nursing

Dr. Harrison is a very knowledgeable advisor. She knows what classes to take and can provide insight on what the class entails. There was a specific question that I had about a class to satisfy a gen ed requirement and she put me in touch with the professor who taught the class and I was able to get a copy of the syllabus and decided that the class was not for me. She is readily available by phone or email to answer any questions you may have. I called her off hours and left a message and she retrieved the voicemail and called me back! She is a great advisor to work with and has been more than helpful in my RN-BSN transition at WCU!

Dr. Harry Holt
Health

He never ceases to pay attention to students needs.

Dr. Kimberly-Elizabeth Johnson
Nutrition

Very caring, very helpful, very respectful between students. Though it is not spoken, equal respect and morals are carried in our conversation and how we present each other. I feel as though I can be acknowledged as an adult in her presence, as I can see her as someone I can also respect.

Professor Ed Kubachka
Kinesiology

Professor Ed Kubachka has been extremely helpful in not only enrolling in classes and scheduling, but he has been very supportive and informative in manners pertaining to degree progress and ensuring that advisees are staying on track. He has also shown encouragement and drive for his students to not only make achievements in the classroom, but also in their personal lives as well. Ed is approachable and easy-going. He provides advisees a relaxed environment that seems to bring out the best in them. He is quick to respond and seems to have something good to mention that maybe you haven't thought of or taken into consideration. Professor Ed Kubachka should receive this award.

Dr. Selen Razon
Kinesiology

Selen Razon is extremely friendly and patient. She'll spend time with you, and actually help you step by step through whatever you need. She has always kept her word and even uses her free time (not office hours) to help you.

Dr. Gopal Sankaran
Health

Professor Gopal has an excellent approach in helping students recognize their strength and ability. He helped set short-term realistic goals since he became by advisor, and overtime those values have helped me to set and accomplished some long-term goals. I think he deserves this recognition.

Dr. Maura Sheehan
Health

She recently retired, but by far the best. Always looking out for her students, and still does so after retirement!

Dr. Charles Shorten
Health

Dr. Shorten is very patient with students. He organized with in advising schedule. He make sure he give you extra time if you need more advising time.

Dr. Craig Stevens
Kinesiology

Dr. Stevens is a professor who prepares students to be professionals in the field of exercise science and to work with apparently healthy individuals to improve their quality of life. He expects his students to uphold many responsibilities that are critical in becoming an Exercise Scientist, Physical Therapist, Occupational Therapist, and Chiropractor, such as understanding the mechanisms and concepts underlying exercise physiology, kinesiology, anatomy, and physiology that will enable individuals to become more physically fit. He teaches students lifelong skills and concepts, such as exercise leadership and programming, exercise prescription, goal setting, and assessments, which are imperative when working with clients in the real world. Dr. Stevens is extremely knowledgeable in his profession, as he answers questions about his class and other pertinent information that will help students in whatever avenue of health profession he or she would want to pursue, whether it is graduate school or in the fitness industry. Dr. Stevens wants students to master the skills and abilities of prescribing exercise in order to become prepared for the job opportunity; those students who took Dr. Stevens Fitness Assessment and Exercise Prescription class, and ultimately graduate from West Chester University of Pennsylvania, are the best qualified.

Dr. Jeanie Subach
Nutrition

Dr. Subach recognizes students' potential and encourages them to exceed. She advocates for the underdog. She educates her students about career paths other than the typical path and provides opportunities for volunteer and exploration of those different paths. She does more than any professor I know.

Dr. Chiwoneso Tinago
Health

Even thought she is not my advisor, but she makes sure you are on the right track.

Dr. Jennifer Walsh-Means
Communication Sciences and Disorders

Dr. Means is sincere and wants to see her students do well. As an advisor for a competitive field of study, she challenges her students to improve while simultaneously giving them the confidence they need to go into the world.

Dr. Melissa Whidden
Kinesiology

As available when needed, shows interest in my schedule and has classes prepared when I go to talk to her about scheduling

College of Sciences and Mathematics

Dr. Eleanor Brown
Psychology

She goes above and beyond to help her students with whatever they need. She is eager to help with any academic problems as well as give advice about personal struggles. She has helped me with scheduling classes, graduate school recommendations, as well as introducing me to the ECCEL team (Early Childhood Cognition and Emotions Lab). Her research findings in ECCEL are being continually being published in several countries.

Dr. Richard Burns
Computer Science

Dr. Burns is always available to help a student plan their schedule and their future, and provides advice in all forms of life - academic, career and personal life. He won't hesitate to share an anecdote from his life that will help you make a decision and is always willing to have a discussion, no matter the topic. Dr. Burns will frequently make plans to meet students outside of his office hours if it is more convenient for them.

Dr. Giovanni Casotti
Biology

Dr. Casotti is always helpful and points you in the right direction for matters inside the classroom as well as scheduling classes.

Dr. Melissa Cichowicz
Chemistry

She genuinely cares about her advisees and goes above and beyond what is required for an advisor.

Dr. Teresa Donze-Reiner
Biology

Dr. Donze, though her time at West Chester University has been short, has made a huge impact on my perceptions of academia at this institution. Handling every situation with such poise, passion, and grace, she is an excellent role model for any aspiring professional no matter what vocational path. She selflessly dedicates her time to her students, which is a critical facet of a professional working in a higher educational setting. Personally, Dr. Donze has been a wonderful support system and friend who always will drop her responsibilities to help when I am in need. As I approach the finish line of my undergraduate career, I cannot fathom where I would be without Dr. Donze's support, not only through her individualized advising, but also through the way she carries her professionalism no matter where she goes. Dr. Donze is the prime example of a role model on this campus, and is truly worthy of such recognition.

Dr. James Fabrey
Computer Science

He is a wonderful advisor who has given me expert advice on which classes to take and when in order to graduate on time. He truly cares about my academic success

Dr. Erin Gestl
Biology

Dr. Gestl has in part helped me schedule my academic career to enable myself to graduate with a four year bachelors degree in only three years. He is always very willing to offer his time to assist me despite the fact his is not my university assigned academic advisor. In addition, he has guided me through 3 semesters of genetic research in his laboratory and has acted as a mentor in planning my post graduate studies.

Dr. Felix Goodson
Chemistry

He has been incredibly helpful since day 1. All of his advice has been fantastic, and he has been extremely accommodating regarding scheduling meetings with him.

Dr. Martin Helmke
Earth and Space Sciences

I had him freshman year and he was the most helpful and amazing advisor I have had since. He wants EVERY student to succeed.

Dr. Erin Hill
Psychology

She has always been kind and helpful, it's always a pleasure to meet with her, and everyone I've spoken to who knows her has nothing but pleasant things to say of her.

Dr. Joby Hilliker
Earth and Space Sciences

Dr. Hilliker is always eager to help whenever students need it. He completes all tasks in a timely fashion to make sure his students reap the maximum benefit and have the best chance at being successful.

Dr. Daniel Ilaria
Mathematics

Dr. Ilaria cares deeply about his students within his class, but he also has an unparalleled dedication to their professional development and job application process. He has numerous connections within local (and remote) school districts, and any time he hears of an opening he immediately lets us all know and offers his recommendation. Though I did not have him as an advisor, he has always been there for me with professional and personal questions, and I hear from his advisees that this attitude towards mentoring his students holds true for them as well.

Dr. Vanessa Johnson
Psychology

She knows her students on a personal basis. She knows what classes we would like and dislike along with our personalities. She is constantly offering her help and advice and genuinely wants us to succeed. Amazing advisor!

Dr. Monica Joshi
Chemistry

Dr. Joshi has shaped her forensic and toxicological chemistry program in a way that has given me full confidence as a scientist and as a person. The opportunities she has provided me with have improved who I am and who I will become throughout the rest of my career. I truly believe there is no better nominee for this award.

Dr. Allison Kolpas
Mathematics

Dr. Kolpas has gone above and beyond in her capacity as an adviser in that she has not only helped my select classes that fit my program but that will be useful in the field. She also works hard to remedy errors in the registration system and ensure that I will graduate on time.

Dr. V.K. Kumar
Psychology

He helps me learn and understand the material easily.

Dr. Lisa Marano
Mathematics

Dr. Marano negotiated with the head of the Mathematics Department to open up a summer mathematics course that isn't typically offered so that six of her students could graduate on time. Also, she is the reason that I was able to enroll in four classes this semester. Originally, I was not able to apply to three of those classes because of an error in billing. When the error was resolved, two classes had filled to capacity, and the other needed a special sign-off by the head of that department. Dr. Marano helped me fill out the correct forms and showed me who I needed to meet with to make all three classes possible for me. This process took nearly two months, and Dr. Marano was so patient and prompt with her responses, always replying to my emails, even on the weekends. It is because of her that my Financial Aid has been kept intact and it is because of her that I will be able to graduate on time, - that I won't have to work late nights and wait tables for another year. I never told her that's why I desperately want to graduate on time, and the fact is, she would've done this for any other student, for any one. That is a level of compassion to be admired.

Dr. Gustav Mbuy
Biology

Dr. Mbuy is always available and willing to do anything he could in his power to insure his students are successful.

Dr. Mark McKibben
Mathematics

He is always available and helpful when I need his help and advice.

Dr. Michael Moran
Chemistry

Dr. Moran was my research advisor during my undergraduate career and has continued to be a valued mentor thereafter. Whenever I have come to a crossroads in my professional life, he has given sound advice that has helped me find the right path forward. His knowledge and love of inorganic chemistry is profound. He inspired me to study inorganic chemistry in graduate school and always supported my goals. Now as a post-bac teacher certification student, he is a staunch ally as I navigate this new career path in my life.

Dr. Daria Nikitina
Earth and Space Sciences

Dr. Nikitina provides intellectual leadership to her students and is a model when it comes to her record of excellence in research, publication and dedication to furthering her profession. She has been key to my success at WCU from developing courses and curricula to suggesting professional literature to broaden my scope of knowledge. Additionally, she has written numerous letters of recommendation and support which have resulted in a major impact on my student scholarships/awards/recognition and the resources necessary to take full advantage of institutional and professional opportunities such as conferences and networking. Throughout it all, Dr. Nikitina has generously given of her time and encouragement, she is quite adept at identifying and removing obstacles in my path (and sometimes those obstacles were me getting in my own way) and always expecting nothing but the best possible performance from me to ensure a successful and timely completion of my degree program, and for all of that I am truly grateful and feel that she is worthy of this recognition. Please join me in showing her how valuable she is to her students and the university.

Dr. Jessica Schedlbauer
Biology

Dr. Schedlbauer has been more supportive than I ever could've hoped for. She was assigned to me when my concentration was still general biology, so although now my future plans do not relate to her specialty, she has always done the most to help and advise me. She's written me countless letters of recommendations and always provides me with opportunities which might be useful to me. I cannot thank her enough!

Dr. Linda Stevenson
Political Science

Dr. Stevenson is a kind, understanding advisor who is always looking to help her students. She's always willing to help regardless of the time of day. There was numerous times I came to her office unannounced without an appointment. She is very informative and gives great advice on topics that are relevant to my major. One of the best things about Dr. Stevenson is the fact she is always kind and sweet. I never witnessed a day or time when she was upset or having a great day. She is marveled by many students and professors in my department and I honestly can see why.

Dr. Jessica Sullivan-Brown
Biology

I have known Dr. Sullivan-Brown since my second semester of freshman year. I have done research with her ever since, and she has been nothing short of amazing. She is very patient and kind when teaching students, such as when teaching me lab techniques as a freshman. Moreover, she always makes herself available to students to help them. Even though she is not my advisor, I have gone to her countless amount of times for scheduling help/pre-med advice/etc. Also, she will go above and beyond to provide students with resources that would benefit them the most, such as going to a research conference together to present our poster. Dr. Sullivan-Brown's passion to better the education of her students is unparalleled from my experience at WCU and I can't wait to see what she has in store for us students in the future.

Dr. Eric Sweet
Biology

Dr. Sweet is always eager to provide students with both academic and career advice

Mr. Johny Tadros
Psychology

He is the nicest person and has the best interest of his students. He has been of much help to me and I'll miss him when I graduate this semester.

Dr. John Townsend
Chemistry

Dr. Townsend advised me during my undergraduate work and is now my advisor for a post-bac teaching certificate. He has been an outstanding source for support of my education and knowledge of the university's policies. He is always willing to look into any questions I might have and find the best ways for me to proceed in my endeavors. He has a remarkable knowledge of the subject of chemistry and is a wonderful teacher as well as advisor. I have known Dr. Townsend since 2004 and there is no more deserving nominee than he.

Dr. Julie Wiest
Anthropology & Sociology

Dr. Wiest has always been a person who I can tell cares and understands her students. When I switched majors, I requested her because I knew her advice would be in my best interest and to maximize my academic development.

Dr. Deanne Zotter
Psychology

She is so understanding and helpful. She always is available to email about scheduling issues and gives great advice. Dr. Zotter definitely cares about her students and their success here at WCU. She is awesome!

School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies

Dr. Bruce Norris
Professional Studies Program

He was knowledgeable on majors and minors across the board, and also was able to help me find classes quickly that I was interested in. He helped me fit them into my schedule in order to graduate in the least number of semesters.

Dr. Alice Speh
Liberal Studies Program

Her knowledge of the campus; ability to communicate with others; impeccable advising are just a few of the reasons for my nominations.

University-Wide Recipients

Dr. Marie Bunner
Academic Development Program

Dr. Bunner constantly strives for the best out of her students. She deeply cares about her students and provides an easy and calming setting for advising.

Dr. Ann Colgan
Pre-Major Academic Advising

Dr. Colgan is an extremely helpful adviser who has provided me the necessary advice I need to better my education and find the major that fits me.

Dr. Sara Hinkle
Student Affairs

Dr. Sara Hinkle is the Assistant Vice President of Student Affairs. On top of her role as a staff member she is a mother, advisor of SGA, and involved with multiple offices on campus. Dr. Hinkle is most worthy of recognition for her advising of my sorority Chi Upsilon Sigma National Latin Sorority, Inc. I first met Dr. Hinkle when I became a sister in Spring of 2015. In Fall of 2016 I became chapter president. It was then that I realized how influential her role was as our faculty advisor. When I reached out to Dr. Hinkle at the beginning of the semester she immediately welcomed myself and other sisters to her house for dinner, something that she has done with sisters in the past. We were able to spend time with her and her son, get to know each other more and talk about the upcoming programs that we are planning. Dr. Hinkle always offers her support and advice not just for my sorority but my educational and professional life as well. She exemplifies what it means to be a member of my sorority; a strong, educated, professional and well-rounded woman. Dr. Hinkle is an outstanding advisor and I appreciate the sacrifice she has made to be my sorority's faculty advisor.

Dr. John Kinslow
Pre-Major Academic Advising

Doctor Kinslow helped me immensely. My first semester due to my depression, ADD, and anxiety I had a very hard time and didn't want my grades to reflect who I really was, because they did not. Doctor Kinslow helped me through this and I cannot thank him enough.

Professor Courtney Lloyd
Pre-Major Academic Advising

She is a great advisor, always helpful, and always has time for her students!