Staff Picture

Meet the Staff of Academic Services


Erika J. Smith, PhD, EdM: Dean, Academic Services

Erika has been a part of the Academic Services staff since 2000, and became the dean in July 2016. In this role, she oversees the cohesive network of peers, staff and faculty who provide academic advising and support services for undergraduate students. She has been publishing and presenting on issues related to college access and success for underrepresented students-- with a focus on youth in foster care since 2001, and is an affiliated researcher with Brandeis’ Institute for Child, Youth and Family Policy. Erika holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Lehigh University, where she matriculated as a Posse scholar (a merit leadership scholarship program that sends groups of students to top-tier colleges and universities), an EdM in Education Policy and Management from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and a PhD in Social Policy from Brandeis’ Heller School for Social Policy and Management. Her time at Brandeis has also included appointments as Director of the Myra Kraft Transitional Year Program, research assistant at the Heller School’s Center for Youth and Communities, mentor for the Posse program, research analyst for the Office of Planning and Institutional Research, lecturer at the Heller Graduate School, and ombudswoman. 


Kathryn Bethea, PhD, EdM: Director, Myra Kraft Transitional Year Program 

Kathryn has worked for over ten years in higher education as Chair of the College Success 101 program and an Assistant Director of Admissions/Ethnic Minority Recruitment Coordinator at Carnegie Mellon University.  College Success 101 is a collaborative among higher education professionals to improve college access for low income and first generation students in the Pittsburgh metro area. In this capacity, Kathryn engaged in strategic planning, budget management, partnership development, and coordination of workshops and presentations on behalf of the program. In addition, she has also served as an adjunct psychology instructor at various colleges in the Pittsburgh and Boston areas. 

Kathryn holds a BA in Psychology and Africana Studies from the University of Notre Dame, an Ed.M. in Human Development and Psychology at Harvard Graduate School of Education, and a PhD in Higher Education Management from the University of Pittsburgh’s School of Education. Her research focuses on college access and transition for underserved and underrepresented students of color. She has presented her work at various professional conferences such as the Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE) and the American Educational Research Association (AERA) as well as published multiple articles. 

When Kathryn is not working, she helps with the youth at her church, enjoys spending quality time with her partner and their cat, likes to travel, and loves to watch Bollywood movies while eating her favorite dessert, rice kheer!

 Katie Julian

Katherine Dunn: Senior Academic Advisor

Katie Dunn joined Academic Services in February 2014 and previously worked as the Program Advisor for the Student Support Services Program. Katie earned her bachelor's degree in communications and her master's degree in higher education administration both from Boston College. She has worked in both academic affairs and student life and looks to support "the whole person" in advising.  Her professional interests include the first year experience, supporting first-generation college students, and integrating academic advising and career development. In her free time, Katie enjoys following New England sports, trying new foods around Boston, running, and relaxing on Cape Cod, where she grew up working in her family's small pizza restaurant!


Erin Flood: Academic Advisor

Erin joined Academic Services in 2017, and works with students whose last names begin with A-C. Previously, Erin has held roles providing academic and career advising for a range of students (high school - graduate school), teaching ESOL classes, and performing research & data analysis. She believes strongly in a holistic, collaborative advising approach, grounded in humor and informed choice. Erin holds a B.S. in Psychology and Religion from Tufts University, and an Ed.M. in Human Development and Psychology from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Erin loves helping all students explore their interests, identify their goals, and use their many skills to solve the problems that matter most to them. She can't wait to hear what you're excited about! Outside of work, Erin is especially interested in NOVA documentaries, folk music, Excel formulas, improv comedy, that cool thing she just heard on NPR, and grilled cheese sandwiches.


Welby Gonzalez: Senior Department Coordinator

Welby joined the Office of Academic Services in 2017 as a Senior Department Coordinator. Prior to working at Brandeis, he served as the Jenzabar Recruitment Manager & Salesforce Administrator at Cambridge College. Originally from the Dominican Republic, Welby holds a Bachelor of Science in Management Information Systems from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. He is passionate about increasing education access to the underserved and unrepresented population. He has held positions in Student Information Systems, Information Technology, Residential Education, Admissions, Orientation, and Non-Profit Programs for ABCD (Action for Boston Community Development) as Youth Services Specialist. In his free time, Welby enjoys singing, cooking, traveling, coaching tennis, and volunteering at local poverty-relief agencies around Greater Boston.

Brian Koslowski

Brian Koslowski: Director, Academic Advising

Brian joined the Brandeis community in 2008 as an Area Coordinator in the Department of Community Living, and began his work in Academic Services in 2010.  As Director of Academic Advising, Brian is the advisor for undergraduate students with last names beginning N-R and provides leadership for the academic advising team. He has a B.A. in Psychology and Communication and an M.Ed. in Higher Education Administration, both from the University of Massachusetts Amherst.  Brian has held positions in Residence Life, Admissions, Orientation, and Pre-College programs at UMass Amherst, NYU, and Brown University.  Brian is active in NACADA (Global Community for Academic Advising) and was a member of the NACADA Emerging Leaders Program cohort in 2013-2015.  Brian is passionate about social justice education, college access, and student leadership. Brian enjoys reading, running, crosswords, live music, and strong coffee, and spending time with his husband and new daughter, Flora.  He also teaches group cycle/spinning classes in the greater Boston area.   

elena lewis

Elena Lewis: Director, TRIO Student Support Services Program

Elena Lewis began working at Brandeis in June of 2004. Before her arrival to Brandeis she served as the Counseling Coordinator and Critical Thinking Instructor for Student Support Services at Westfield State University in Westfield, MA. She credits SSSP and the McNair TRIO  programs as influential resources that guided her through her undergraduate degree from Westfield State University in Mass Communications. Elena earned her Master's degree in Sociology here at Brandeis where she researched gender, race, and class inequality and reconciliation efforts to promote equity in the U.S. For the past 10 years, her passion for working with students makes coming to work a privilege. She says, "I learn from students am inspired by them everyday." Aside from being a tech fanatic, watching movies, eating out, and collecting frogs are hobbies she enjoys in her spare time.

julia moffitt

Julia Mani: Associate Director, Academic Advising

Julia joined the Academic Services team at Brandeis in 2012, and works with students whose last names begin with H-K. She is also the coordinator of the BUGS (Brandeis Undergraduate Group Study) peer tutoring program. Originally from Los Angeles, California, she first discovered her passion for working with students in rural South Dakota, where she worked as a high school social studies teacher with Teach for America. Since 2006, she has worked at a range of institutions, from Portland Community College in Oregon to Harvard University and Bennington College in Vermont.  At the same time she has developed a background in academic advising, study abroad advising, career services, and disability services. Julia holds a B.A. in History from the University of California, Los Angeles and an Ed. M. in Higher Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. In her free time, Julia enjoys running, reading fiction and spending time with her daughter Claire.

katy mclaughlin

Katy McLaughlin: Senior Academic Advisor

Katy works with students whose last names begin with D-G and coordinates the Independent Interdisciplinary Major (IIM), which allows students the opportunity to develop a unique course of study. She joined the Academic Services team in 2010 as the SSSP Department Coordinator, and after a brief time away to pursue a master’s degree, she returned in 2014 as an Academic Advisor. Katy holds a B.A. in Philosophy from Tufts University and an Ed.M. in Higher Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Katy is particularly interested in issues related to college access and persistence, the first-year student experience, and helping students navigate the search for purpose and meaning. In her free time, Katy enjoys playing with her dogs Riley and Milo, strategy board games, knitting, reading both fiction and non-fiction, and exploring new places.

meredith monaghan

Meredith Monaghan: Director, Academic Fellowships

Meredith joined Academic Service in 2010. As Director of Academic Fellowships, Meredith helps students and recent alumni identify and apply for opportunities that extend their academic reach, like Rhodes and Marshall Scholarships, Fulbright grants, and on- and off-campus research positions. She loves working directly with students, especially helping them to discern, and then achieve their goals. She is an active member of the National Association of Fellowship Advisors, presenting work at conferences in Philadelphia and Minneapolis and traveling to the UK, Germany, and China to learn about each country's educational landscape and scholarship opportunities. Prior to coming to Brandeis, Meredith was a professor of Classics at Reed College and Boston College, and earned an AB from Bowdoin College, an MA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a Ph.D. from Stanford. Outside of work, Meredith enjoys traveling, reading, playing volleyball, and spending time with her husband and two children.


Lily Pineiro: Senior Department Coordinator

Lily joined the Academic Services team in 2016 as a Senior Department Coordinator. Originally from Colombia, she holds a BA in Business Administration and a Master's in Marketing from the UNAB - Colombia. Prior to working at Brandeis, Lily's work experience includes supporting International Students as an admission officer for Approach International Student Center. She also has more than eight years of experience working as a Commercial Developer and Sales Coordinator in Colombia for Nutresa Food Conglomerate. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her husband and friends, working out at the gym, going for walks at night and trying International cuisines.


Elizabeth Rotolo: Assistant Director, Academic Fellowships

Elizabeth joined the Brandeis staff in September 2013. She serves as the Academic Advisor for the MLK Fellows and is part of the Fellowship Advising team. Elizabeth holds a B.A. in Psychology from Occidental College and an M.Ed. in Student Affairs from the University of California at Los Angeles. Elizabeth has worked previously as a Program Coordinator at the Institute for Educational Advancement and as a Resident Director at Boston College. Elizabeth is especially interested in student leadership and experiential learning opportunities. In her spare time, Elizabeth enjoys reading, running, and taking her dog Riley to the dog park.


LaKiyah Russell: Academic Advisor

LaKiyah Russell joined Academic Services in May 2019 and works with students whose last names begin with L-M. Prior to starting at Brandeis, she was a Residence Director at Emerson College. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Westfield State University and a Master’s degree in Higher Education from Merrimack College. LaKiyah is especially interested in helping students gain a holistic experience during their time in college. In her spare time, LaKiyah enjoys listening to music, baking cookies, and enjoying family time!


Kate Stutz: Director, Pre-Health Advising

Kate joined the Brandeis family in 2016 as the Director of Pre-Health Advising.  Previously, she advised pre-health students and taught courses on African American literature, Native American literature, and composition at University of Wisconsin-Madison.  As an advisor, she strives to meet the unique needs of diverse populations of students in order to help them achieve their professional goals.  She earned her B.A. in English from SUNY Geneseo and then went on to graduate school at UW-Madison for her M.A. in Afro-American Studies and PhD in Literary Studies.  Originally from New York, Kate is very happy to be back on the east coast.  In her free time, she loves to bake, read fiction, and play board games with her husband. 


 Chelsea Walker: Assistant Director, TRIO Student Support Services Program

Chelsea Walker joined the Office of Academic Services in August 2017 as the Assistant Director
for the TRIO Student Support Services Program (SSSP). Chelsea earned her BA in Psychology
with a minor in Deaf and Hard of Hearing Studies, and her M.Ed. in Educational Studies from
the University of New Hampshire. As a first-generation student and an alumna of SSSP, she
credits the program for much of her success in higher education. Chelsea has a background in
college admissions, academic mentoring, and youth leadership programming. Her passion for
equal access to higher education for underrepresented groups of students has driven her work,
and is what continues to inspire her every day. In her free time, Chelsea enjoys collecting sea
glass, following New England sports, baking, staying active, and volunteering.



Jaspreet Mahal: Program Administrator, Student Accessibility Support

Jaspreet joined the team in 2016 as a graduate assistant for making coursework accessible for visually challenged students. She holds a dual Master’s in Sustainable International Development and Women, Gender and Sexuality studies from Brandeis University. Jaspreet is passionate about subaltern perspective of development and had been working on maternal and child healthcare for marginalized communities. She also holds a Master’s in Healthcare Management from India. Working with SAS, she currently enables to make coursework accessible for students with visual and learning disabilities through a variety of software processes including Alt-Text editing. She also works with students to provide them classroom and exam accommodations in order to help them navigate their years at Brandeis. Outside work, Jaspreet enjoys writing, painting, cooking and photography.  

Scott L.

Scott Lapinski: Accessibility Specialist (Graduate Students), Student Accessibility Support

Scott joined Student Accessibility Support in 2018, and is responsible for helping graduate students with disabilities. Scott is working towards completing his Ph.D in Curriculum and Instruction at Boston College with a focus on belonging and students with emotional and behavioral disorders at the middle school level. During his time at Boston College, he worked on a number of projects related to accessibility and inclusion in higher education. He also taught and developed face-to-face, blended, and online courses at Boston College and at City College of New York. These courses covered a range of topics related to disability, inclusion, accessibility, and Universal Design for Learning (UDL). He also was a research associate at CAST, and a LEND fellow (Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Disabilities Program). When not at work, Scott enjoys spending time with his cats, reading, and baking. 

Elizabeth Nako

Elizabeth Nako: Accessibility Specialist, Student Accessibility Support

Elizabeth Nako joined Academic Services and the Brandeis community in October 2018. She serves as an Accessibility Specialist for Undergraduate Students on the Student Accessibility Support (SAS) team at Brandeis. Elizabeth earned her BA in history from Providence College and her MA in higher education administration from Boston College. As a "life-long learner,” Elizabeth loves working in the energetic and dynamic higher education environment, and creating a welcoming and comfortable atmosphere to engage with students on many levels. She enjoys meeting with students individually to support them through appropriate accommodations and services to be successful in the classroom, as well as helping students with disabilities work towards achieving their academic and personal goals. Prior to her role at Brandeis, Elizabeth worked in a variety of functional areas in higher education including: disability services, admissions, and career services at other institutions in the Boston area. When she is not working, Elizabeth enjoys spending time with her friends and family, reading good books, cheering on Boston sports teams, playing trivia, traveling to new places, staying active whether it is running, hiking, or taking a yoga class, volunteering in her local community, and fitting in as much beach time as possible.

Kaitlyn Rogers


Kaitlyn Rogers: Accessibility Specialist, Student Accessibility Support

Kaitlyn joined the Academic Services Staff in October 2018. Before coming to Brandeis, Kaitlyn worked at four other institutions supporting students with documented disabilities, where she developed and presented faculty/staff/student trainings about championing individuals with disabilities, conducted student check in meetings, advised clubs, and more. Using a holistic approach, Kaitlyn works with students to empower them through exploring their strengths, meeting their individual unique needs, and teaching the importance of self-advocacy in order to assist in achieving their personal goals. Kaitlyn is a first-generation college student, who earned her BA in Interdisciplinary Studies and Humanities from Bay Path University; and a Masters of Education in Student Affairs Counseling at Bridgewater State University. For fun, Kaitlyn likes to snuggle her Puggle Foster, be creative, go on adventures with her partner, play board games and watch the Patriots. 

Patrice Charlot


Patrice Charlot: Program Advisor, TRIO Student Support Services Program

Patrice Charlot joined the Brandeis community in 2018 as the Program Advisor for the TRiO Student Support Services Program, also known as SSSP. Prior to being at Brandeis, Patrice worked for Boston based non-profit, Bottom Line, supporting low-income, first-generation college students get in and go far, Bottom Line’s motto. As a College Success Advisor, Patrice supported upwards of 80 students a year as they navigated through the triumphs and challenges of starting their college careers at various institutions in the Greater Boston area. Patrice herself identified with her students as she too was a first-generation, college student at the University of Massachusetts Amherst where she completed her undergrad, double majoring in Public Health and Sociology. While at UMass, Patrice served as a Resident Assistant for first year students for 3 years, and upon graduation, moved on to work as a Social Worker for the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families before returning to her passion, higher education, and working for Bottom Line. Patrice’s favorite part about working with students is the opportunity to encourage meaningful self-reflection, offer emotional support, and empower students to advocate for themselves. When Patrice isn’t at work, she enjoys Marylou’s Coffee, her mom’s Haitian cooking, and watching makeup tutorials on YouTube.

Laura Parrillo Picture


Laura Parrillo: Department Coordinator

Laura joined the Academic Services team as Department Coordinator in October 2018. After earning her bachelor’s degree from Assumption College, Laura's earned a master’s degree at Boston University in higher education administration and has been working at college campuses for over 15 years. With experience in residential life at two small liberal arts institutions (Babson College and Curry College) to student leadership development at a large institution (Northeastern University) to alumni relations at a graduate theological school (Episcopal Divinity School), Laura's passion is working with students to help them achieve success at the collegiate level. In her free time Laura enjoys spending time and discovering every nook and cranny of New England with her husband and two kids. She enjoys being crafty, cooking, and has recently found a love for yoga.