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Faculty Biographies

Dr. Tomarra Adams has a MSSW and Ph.D. in Social Work from the University of Louisville with a post-graduate certificate in Psychoanalytic Therapy from Bellarmine University. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Dean for Undergraduate Education at Spalding University, and Associate Professor in the African American Studies Program. She is involved with NACADA’s Assessment Institute, Faculty Advising Commission, and the Social Justice Interest Group. She also serves as a fellow for the inaugural cohort of the Excellence in Academic Advising Program. She enjoys researching racial identity development and retention of Black students at predominantly White institutions. 

Ayo Agunbiade is a senior academic advisor in the Poole College of Management at NC State University. He has served on and led various advising assessment teams. Ayo has completed two of NACADA's Assessment Institutes and is a former recipient of the Assessment Institute Scholarship. Ayo has presented on assessment topics at local, regional, and national conferences.

Theresa (Terri) Bevilacqua is the Manager of Enrollment and Advising Services for Biomedical Laboratory Sciences, School of Medicine and Health Sciences at The George Washington University. Prior to George Washington, Thersea was responsible for the assessment of a decentralized academic advising model at George Mason University. In her tenure at Mason, she worked collaboratively with various campus stakeholders to develop student learning outcomes for academic advising, assist individual colleges with building their own assessment plans, create and implement a student survey for academic advising and collaborate with Institutional Research to tell the story of advising at Mason using various data sources.

Karen Boston, in addition to presenting at numerous NACADA conferences in the area of advising assessment, Karen Boston has been a faculty member for the NACADA Assessment Institutes since 2011 and was Chair of the Assessment Institute and Advisory Board from 2013-2015.  In 2011, Dr. Boston was a faculty member for NACADA’s Webinar, “Steps in Developing an Assessment Plan for Academic Advising” and a contributor to the NACADA Advising Administration Monograph.  She is a member of NACADA’s Consultant and Speaker Service and served on her University’s Academic Advising Council and Advising Assessment Task Force which established an institutional wide assessment program for academic advising.  

Dan Chandler is the Assistant Director of First Year Experience at Brigham Young University. As such, he is responsible for the university’s peer mentoring program, program evaluation, and learning outcomes assessment. Dan earned his BA from BYU and his MS in Academic Advising from Kansas State University. He has worked with program evaluation for all of his career but it wasn’t until attending the Assessment Institute in 2013 that he learned that evaluation is deepened by incorporating learning outcomes assessment. Dan has presented on the campus, state, regional, and national levels on learning outcomes assessment topics.

Heather Doyle holds a BA in Psychology from University of Prince Edward Island and MEd in Counselling Psychology from Memorial University. She serves as Senior Advisor on Retention and Director of Student Academic Success at Dalhousie University, where she provides support on the development and implementation of initiatives to increase student success and retention, as well as oversees academic and career advising.  She is a sessional lecturer at Florida Atlantic University and University of Manitoba, where she teaches the online Appreciative Advising course, Advising Essentials and Advising Assessment courses respectively. Heather is also part of the NACADA Consultant & Speaker’s Series. 

Beth Higgins has over 25 years of experience in academic advising.  Throughout her years in the advising profession, Higgins has implemented a dual advising program, developed advising assessment plans, coordinated professional development for advisors, led the University of Maine System-wide Advising Committee, and coordinated numerous retention and persistence initiatives.  Most recently Beth has been the transition lead for academic advising at her institution.  Dr. Higgins has been active in NACADA at the regional and national levels.  In addition to facilitating numerous conference presentations, Beth has served as a NACADA Board of Directors member, Chair of the Commission for Undecided and Exploratory Students, member of the Commission and Interest Group Steering Committee, and has been a contributor to the NACADA Journal, Clearinghouse, Academic Advising Today, and Advising Administration Monograph.

Charlie Nutt, a NACADA member since 1991, joined Kansas State University and the NACADA Executive Office in 2002 as Associate Director and Assistant Professor in the College of Education and was made Executive Director in 2007. Charlie served in various leadership roles in the Association before coming to work full-time for Executive Office. He has served on the faculty of the NACADA Summer Institute, Academic Advising Administrators' Institute, and Assessment of Advising Institute. As Executive Director of NACADA, Charlie is responsible for coordinating the work of the Executive Office staff as well as working with the various NACADA units on professional development issues, external relations for the Association, and our International initiatives.

Isaiah Vance began his career in higher education in 2007 as a faculty member in the Department of Religion at Eastern New Mexico University in Portales, NM, where he eventually became department chair. Upon relocating back to Central Texas in 2012, he decided to focus on academic advising and became the first Director of Advising at the newly established Texas A&M University-Central Texas. In 2018 he was hired by The Texas A&M University System to manage all academic and student support operations at a newly formed University System Center called The RELLIS Campus, and currently serves there as Assistant Provost.

Kathy Zarges is the Assistant Dean of Advising, Student Success and Licensure in the College of Education, Health and Human Services at Kent State University. She has served on the faculty for the NACADA Assessment Institute for nine years and is currently the chair of the Assessment Institute Advisory Board. She is a consultant for the NACADA Consultant and Speakers Bureau and has presented at NACADA on many topics including assessment of advising, implementing a new advising model, flipped advising, and group advising. She co-authored the clearinghouse article: Assessment of Academic Advising: A Summary of the Process and book chapter Assessing the Impact of Academic Advising: Current Issues and Future Trends in Academic Advising Re-examined, New Directions for Higher Education. Kathy has her MEd from Kent State University in Higher Education Administration and Student Affairs.

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