Kim Godsoe: Assistant Provost for Academic Affairs
Kim began working in the field of higher education in 1990, and has been a member of the Brandeis community since 1994. As the Dean of Academic Services, Kim oversees all aspects of this busy office, from class-based advising to special programs. With a BA in Russian and Politics and an MFA in Writing, Kim is currently working on her PhD in Assets and Inequalities from the Heller School at Brandeis. Dedicated to maintaining and enhancing the mission and values of Brandeis, Kim serves on a number of campus committees, including the Committee on Academic Standing, the Committee in Support of Teaching, and the Provost's Advisory Committee on Assessment. On a larger scope, she has also presented on the topic of Assessment at the national conference for the Council for Opportunity in Education, as well as at regional conferences for NASPA and NACADA. Outside of work, Kim loves to test out new culinary creations and also loves to travel to places including Italy, Spain, Russia, Estonia, Costa Rica, and Montserrat.
Gillian Boulay: International Students Advisor, International Students and Scholars Office
After spending several years living and working in southern China, Gillian moved back to her native New England and began working at Brandeis in 2009. Gillian enjoys advising and getting to know Brandeis's amazing international students! Gillian holds a BA in Anthropology and Asian Studies (with a concentration in Chinese) from Mount Holyoke College as well as a TEFL Certification for Teaching English as a Foreign Language from Peking University. A food enthusiast, Gillian loves to cook and host dinner parties for family and friends.
Ruth Brigham: Assistant Director, International Students and Scholars Office
Ruth joined the Brandeis community in 2001 with extensive international experience and education. Prior to Brandeis, she was the director and a teacher in an ESL program for an organization called ACCESS in Boston’s Chinatown. She also taught ESL classes for a summer in Dushanbe, Tajikistan and, while there, enjoyed traveling in Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. She recalls her most amazing adventure as doing relief work in Colombia for three months. With a BS in French and minor in Spanish, and a MA in TEFL and Intercultural Studies, Ruth advises international students concerning travel and employment, and also organizes workshops for the ISSO. To add to her international experience, Ruth lived in various European countries for over 8 years.
David Elwell: Director, International Students and Scholars Office
David’s roots in higher education run deep, as both of his parents worked as faculty and staff at a university in his home state of New Hampshire. David himself has been working in higher education since 1992, and began working at Brandeis in 2000. With a BA in Political Science and Spanish Language, Literature, and Culture, and a MPA in Public Administration (Intercultural Communication/Human Resources Management), David has extensive international experience. His main responsibilities include providing advising and programming support to the approximately 900 international students and 175 international scholars/professors/researchers at Brandeis, and helping international population adjust to life in the U.S. He also serves as Brandeis’ designated school official to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Department of State. His favorite Brandeis memory was traveling to New Orleans with a group of Wien Scholars to aid in relief efforts after Hurricane Katrina. His interest in all-things-international was spurred on as a teen when David first traveled abroad to Europe as a member of American soccer team. He now enjoys traveling to new places with his wife and daughter.
A native of Morocco, Souad has been working in higher education since 2003. In 2011, she received a Master of Science in Higher Education at the University of Rochester Warner School of Education and Human Development in Rochester, NY, with a focus on international student services. Souad came to Brandeis after serving as a Technical Associate in the Department of Anesthesiology at the University of Rochester Medical Center, overseeing laboratory management and coordination, including support to its faculty, researchers, and students, as well as administrative duties. In her spare time, Souad enjoys cooking, spending time with her family, swimming, hiking, and traveling. Souad chose to work for the International Students and Scholars Office because she believes that diversity in higher education is a way to make students not only knowledgeable about other individuals of a different race and culture, but also to accept them as a part of a cohesive society. She also believes that a welcoming environment is important to all students regardless of their race, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation.
Bonnie Ryle: International Student Advisor, ISSO
Bonnie is the newest member the ISSO team. Her background includes a BA in Spanish and a minor in Psychology. She also has a master’s degree in Education. Bonnie has spent many years teaching English and living abroad in Seville, Spain. Her unique educational experiences, love for travel, and love for all cultures have led her to the globalized Brandeis University. For Bonnie, one of the best things about working at Brandeis is that there is an opportunity to connect with so many wonderful students, staff, and faculty from all over the world. In Bonnie’s spare time, she loves to travel, flamenco dance, and spend quality time with family and friends.
Emily moved from California in 2009 to pursue her Master's degree in International Education at SIT Graduate Institute, which she earned in 2011. For a year and a half Emily supported international students and scholars as the Department Coordinator of the ISSO. In the summer of 2012 Emily transitioned to the role of SEVIS/PASS Administrator in the ISSO. Emily now maintains the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) and provides visa and immigration support to all of Brandeis' amazing international students. Emily loves working at the ISSO because every time she meets someone new, she wants travel to their country. This means she has a long list to get through over the next several years! In addition to meeting new people, she enjoys playing tennis, reading, and going to the beaches back in California. Emily holds a BA in Linguistics and Liberal Studies from California State University-San Marcos.
Alisha Cardwell: Department Administrator, Study Abroad
Alisha began working at Brandeis in November 2012. She comes from a small town in Ohio and was fortunate to have a high school Spanish teacher who first took her out of the country to both Costa Rica and Spain. She holds a B.A. from Miami University in Diplomacy and Foreign Affairs and a M.Ed. with a specialization in higher education administration from Northeastern University. As a student, Alisha studied abroad for a semester in Luxembourg and also spent a summer in Costa Rica doing volunteer work. Prior to coming to Brandeis, Alisha worked with faculty-led study abroad programs at both EF College Study Tours and the Office of Lifelong Learning at Miami University and most recently worked in Graduate Admissions at New England College of Business and Finance.
Darren R. Gallant, '08: Study Abroad Advisor
Darren joined the office in March 2013. He double majored in Sociology and Politics while at Brandeis. A member of the 2nd midyear class, he was very involved in various campus organizations and student life. During his junior year, Darren studied abroad in Copenhagen with the Denmark International Studies Program (DIS) to bolster his academic learning. Darren earned his M.A. in Higher Education / Student Personnel Administration from New York University. During his time at NYU he traveled to Israel to study international higher education. Most recently Darren worked at Grinnell College and Wheelock College in residence life and academic advising. He is excited to share his experience as an undergraduate at Brandeis and his travel to some 13 countries; including Australia, Costa Rica, Italy, Spain, and France.
Allyson W. Goose: Assistant Director, Study Abroad
Allyson started her work in the Office of Study Abroad in June 2008, bringing with her extensive experience in international and experiential education. Prior to coming to Brandeis she served as an advisor and resident coordinator at Dynamy, a gap year and college-access program in Worcester, Massachusetts. There she delivered leadership development programs, organized community service projects and counseled students on job skills. In addition, she has taught English in Unoke, Japan and Cuenca, Ecuador. She holds a Master's degree in Teaching from Brown University and a B.A. in Anthropology from Grinnell College. As a student, she studied abroad in Nicaragua, Costa Rica and the Netherlands.
Amber Thacher: Program Manager, Brandeis-Led Study Programs
Amber joined the Brandeis team in September 2012 and brings with her extensive experience and knowledge of the field of international education. Prior to coming to Brandeis, Amber served as a program manager at Boston University Study Abroad, a study abroad advisor at Northwestern University, and coordinated and served as on-site director of programs in Costa Rica and Mexico with Interamerican University Studies Institute in Eugene, OR. She received an MA in Intercultural Relations from Lesley University in 2008 and a BA from the University of Oregon in Political Science in 2002, where she had her first experience abroad at the Universidad Autonoma de Querétaro in Mexico in 2000. In addition to her role at Brandeis, Amber serves as co-chair of the Boston Area Study Abroad Association.
J. Scott Van Der Meid: Assistant Dean of Academic Services and Director of Study Abroad
Scott has directed the study abroad program at Brandeis University since 1999. Prior to his time at Brandeis he worked for several years in Boston University's Office of International Programs. Scott received his B.A. in History and German Literature with a concentration in Asia in the Modern World from Allegheny College and his M.A. in Intercultural Relations from Lesley University. He studied in West Germany during the fall of the Berlin Wall and Germany's eventual unification. Scott also studied and worked for several years in Tokyo, Japan. He has been to over 52 countries on every continent except Antarctica. Professionally Scott has served on several national advisory boards in the field of international education including Arcadia University's National Advisory Board, IFSA-Butler's Executive Council of the National Advisory Council and SIT Study Abroad's Partnership Council. He is past Co-Chair of the NAFSA Rainbow Special Interest Group and served as a founding member of the Forum on Education Abroad's Advisory Council. Other national committee involvement included NAFSA's Committee on Underrepresentation in Education Abroad, the SECUSSA Data Collection Working Group, the CIEE Nomination's Committee, the IES Membership Committee, the Forum on Education Abroad's Data Committee and Forum on Education Abroad's Ethics Working Group. He currently serves as chair of the IES Institutional Membership Committee and is a member of the Advisory Board for the NAFSA Rainbow SIG.