Meet Our Team

Our entire staff is dedicated to helping you succeed in all aspects of your college career. We truly care about helping you explore your interests and find your passion.

Meet our Academic Advising Staff
Daniel 1
Daniel Almanza
Academic Learning Skills Specialist

Education:

  • Master of Science in Communication Studies emphasis in Organizational Communication: Illinois State University
  • Bachelor of Science in Public Relations: Illinois State University

Best Part of My Job:

I enjoy watching students have aha moments when they realize how to reach their goals in and outside of the classroom.

Interests:

Spending time with my family and friends, traveling, cooking, and going to the movies.

Corey
Dr. Corey Flack
PREP Academic Advisor

Education:

  • Ph.D. in Italian: University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
  • Master of Arts in Italian Cultural Studies: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Bachelor of Science in Physics and Bachelor of Arts in Creative Writing: University of Arizona

Best Part of My Job:

Helping students develop their interests and get the most out of the college experience

Interests:

Spending time with my wife and twins, both listening to and playing music, reading, writing, playing board games, hiking

Denzel Goodloe
Denzel Goodloe
Academic Advisor

Education:

  • Master of Science in Student Affairs Higher Education: Indiana State University
  • Bachelor of Arts in Sociology: Eastern Illinois University 

Best Part of My Job:

I enjoy being intentional and collaboratively asking positive open-ended questions that help students explore and maximize their educational experiences. My favorite part is becoming an integral player in ensuring students success in their academic endeavors while discovering their dreams, goals, and purpose. 

Interests:

Traveling, recreational sports, swimming, reading, helping people, and spending time with family and friends.

Calen 1
Calen Gutwein
Academic Advisor

Education:

  • Master of Arts in the Teaching of English as a Second Language: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Family Studies: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Best Part of My Job:

Journeying with students as they find meaning and purpose in their lives while navigating their academic career.

Interests:

Food tours, nature walks, movie marathons, singing along with musicals, and story-telling

CJ
CJ Holterman
PREP Academic Advisor

Education:

  • Master of Education in College Student Affairs Leadership: Grand Valley State University 
  • Bachelor of Science in Education and Human Services: University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh

Best Part of My Job:

Helping students navigate their college experience and campus

Interests:

Cooking, playing games, traveling, being outdoors, visiting local parks with my family and coffee!!

Jessica Kim
Jessica Kim
Academic Advisor

Education:

  • Master of Science in School Counseling: Eastern Illinois University
  • Bachelor of Science in Chemistry: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Best Part of My Job:

Being a part of a student’s journey in discovering their ambitions in life and witnessing their growth through personal and academic development

Interests:

Watching movies, singing, dancing, baking, exploring new places, traveling, and spending time with friends and family

Amanda Morley
Amanda Morley
Academic Advisor

Education:

  • Master of Education in Educational Leadership and Policy: University of Utah
  • Bachelor of Science in Family & Consumer Sciences: Eastern Illinois University

Best Part of My Job:

Empowering students to explore their interests in an out of the classroom to discover career opportunities and assist in developing their self-efficacy in college.

Interests:

Outdoor activities, home improvement projects, playing music, traveling, volunteering in the community and spending time with my family.

Dr. Michael Myers
Dr. Michael Myers
Academic Advisor

Education:

  • Ph.D. in Medieval History: University of Notre Dame
  • Master of Arts in Medieval Studies: York (England)
  • Bachelor of Arts in History: University of Arizona

Best Part of My Job:

Spending time with the people I work with

Interests:

Masonry, gardening, English sports cars, chainsawing, boating, and keeping up with my teenagers

Ariel
Ariel Robinson
Undeclared Advisor

Education:

  • Master of Science in Higher Education Administration: Florida International University
  • Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training: Millikin University

Best Part of My Job:

I enjoy getting to know students and asking thoughtful questions that remind them of their unique skills and characteristics. It is great to see it all the pieces fit together in the end.

Interests:

Running, attending track and field meets, volunteering, creative/art projects, watching musicals and/or theatre productions, listening to podcasts, puzzles, tacos and walking my dog.

Chaya
Chaya Sandler
PREP Academic Advisor

Education:

  • Master of Education in Higher Education Administration: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Bachelor of Arts in English: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Best Part of My Job:

Exploring with students how higher education can help them meet their personal and education goals

Interests:

Visiting coffee shops, swimming, going to the movies, and volunteering in the community

Gabby
Gabby Singh
Undeclared Advisor

Education:

  • Master of Arts in Education in Higher Education and Student Affairs: Virginia Tech
  • Bachelor of Arts in Strategic Communications: Susquehanna University

Best Part of My Job:

  • Supporting students as they develop a greater understanding of their strengths and interests and how these can translate to different majors and career paths.

Interests:

  • Spending time outside, playing with my dog, reading, crafting, and visiting coffee shops
Aaron Walk
Aaron Walk
Academic Advisor

Education:

  • Master of Science in College Student Affairs: Eastern Illinois University
  • Master of Arts in History: Eastern Illinois University
  • Bachelor of Arts in History: University of Illinois at Springfield

Best Part of My Job:

Being there to provide support and encouragement for students during their college transition and helping them to explore their academic and career goals.

Interests:

Traveling, going to different baseball stadiums, playing music, movies, trivia, and barbequing, spending time with family and trying to figure out parenthood.

Melissa Williams
Melissa Williams
Academic Advisor

Education:

  • Master of Social Work: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Bachelor of Social Work: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Best Part of My Job:

Supporting students as they transition to the university and begin to discover their interests and career goals

Interests:

Hearing podcasts, watching different shows, cooking, volunteering, and spending time with my friends and family

Meet our Administrators
Jessica Arnold
Jessica Arnold
Senior Assistant Director for Admission and Transition Programs

Education:

  • Master of Science in College Student Affairs: Eastern Illinois University
  • Bachelor of Science in Health Studies, Community Health: Eastern Illinois University

Best Part of My Job:

Interacting with students from their first visit to the university and then working with them when they become an enrolled student. I enjoy seeing students get excited about their passion and interests! 

Interests:

Spending time with my family, cooking and baking, traveling to and exploring new places

Teri
Teri Farr
Associate Director for Academic Advising and Student Success

Education:

  • Master of Science in History: Illinois State University
  • Bachelor of Science in History: Illinois State University

Best Part of My Job:

Working with students to help them realize their full potential and make decisions based upon experience. My favorite moment with a student is when they make the connection between what they are learning in the classroom to their ultimate career and educational goals.

Interests:

Gardening, home improvement and decorating, reading, vacation trips to the beach, and spending time with family and friends

Sarah Reynolds Smothers
Sarah Reynolds Smothers
Assistant Director for First-Year Experience and Honors

Education:

  • Master of Arts in Student Affairs Administration in Higher Education: Ball State University
  • Bachelor of Science in Family & Consumer Sciences: Eastern Illinois University

Best Part of My Job:

Supporting and interacting with some of the most talented and motivated students on campus; it is exciting to see what heights of success they can achieve!

Interests:

Spending time with family and friends, listening to music, checking out all the fun places in the Champaign-Urbana area

Eugene Moore
Dr. Eugene L. Moore
Assistant Director for Student Access, Equity, and Inclusion Programs

Education:

  • Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Policy Studies: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Master of Business Administration in Global Business: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Master of Education in Human Resources: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Bachelor of Arts in Communication: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Best Part of My Job:

I love serving students as it provides a constant reminder of those who helped me to accomplish my goals both professionally and personally. Academic advising/coaching and mentorship is an invaluable asset to students as it minimizes the vastness of Illinois coupled with its inherent passion to give back.

Interests:

Spending time with family, writing, traveling internationally, motivational speaking, volunteering at local church, and karaoke 

Daniel Turner
Dr. Daniel Turner
Director

Education:

  • Ph.D. in Higher Education: Loyola University Chicago 
  • Master of Science in Education in Instructional Technology: Northern Illinois University 
  • Bachelor of Science in Psychology: Northern Illinois University

Best Part of My Job:

Helping students explore all the academic opportunities available to them and talking about their personal goals and dreams

Interests:

Hiking, biking, travel, live music, visiting Colorado and Chicago, and being outdoors