About Our Office
The Dean of Students Office serves as an advocate for all Brandeis students, strives to ensure the quality of their overall cocurricular experience at the university and promotes opportunities for students to engage in leadership activities and to experience personal, social and emotional growth and development.
Photo Credit: Leigh Hilderbrandt
Our office maintains a varied program of social, cultural and intellectual events during the academic year. We work to build a community based upon mutual understanding and consideration.
As Dean of Students, Monique Pillow Gnanaratnam oversees the Departments Community Service, Student Activities, Student Rights and Community standards, and co-chairs the Care Team.
She holds a bachelor's degree from Wilmington College and a master's degree from the Bowling Green State University, both in Ohio. She previously worked at Northeastern University in Boston; Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky; and the University of Dayton, in Ohio.
As Assistant Dean of Students, Stephanie Grimes oversees the Departments of Student Activities and Community Service and serves as a liaison between the university and students in moments of crisis or challenge. She manages the day-to-day operations of the department, including but not limited to staff supervision, budget management and marketing and promotion, and serves as an adviser to the Family Weekend and Senior Week programs.
Stephanie has been a part of the Brandeis community for more than two decades, previously holdings the positions of director and associate director of student activities, activities adviser and quad director. Prior to joining Brandeis, she worked as assistant director of student involvement at Chowan College in Murfreesboro, North Carolina.
Stephanie graduated from Bryant College (now Bryant University) with a bachelor's degree in business management and holds a master's degree in college student development and counseling from Northeastern University.
Alex Rossett has worked in various small to midsized private institutions around New England. During her years in higher education, she has been involved in wellness education, career services, orientation, residence life and community standards. Her focus is on helping students build vibrant campus communities while empowering them to find who they are as individuals and bring the best and most unique aspects of themselves to each experience they create.
Alex holds a bachelor's degree in psychology, with a minor in sociology, from SUNY Cortland, and a master's degree in counseling, with a concentration in student development in higher education, from Central Connecticut State University.
Elba Valerio provides administrative support for the Dean of Students Office. Specifically, she manages and coordinates the day-to-day administrative activities of the office and coordinates responses to student and parent inquiries.
Elba is a graduate of Bentley University, where she earned a bachelor's degree in international business management, and holds a master's degree in college student development and counseling from Northeastern University.
She was an Americorps member of City Year Boston, a volunteer service program that focuses on making a positive impact in education and community development. Born and raised in Boston, Elba is fluent in English and Spanish.
As the Care Team Case Manager, Wendy helps to coordinate resources and services for students of concern in the Brandeis University community. Prior to Brandeis, she provided specialized advising services and support programs at Northeastern University and North Shore Community College. Other positions that have shaped her passion for supporting student success include teaching psychology and other courses (in the classroom and online), executive function coaching, working with at-risk youth at a non-profit organization, as well as clinical triage and research roles at Boston area hospitals.
Wendy completed a Bachelors degree in Psychology from Arcadia University in Pennsylvania, a Masters degree in Applied Child Development and Clinical/Developmental Psychology from Tufts University, and a post-graduate seminar in Mood Disorders from Harvard University.
Wendy grew up in Philadelphia and moved to Boston in 1998. She enjoys singing, attending concerts, yoga, photography, and traveling.
Sebastian Chai-Onn oversees financial operations for Brandeis’s undergraduate clubs and organizations. He is responsible for the creation, control, and implementation of the annual budgets and all funding requirements. Sebastian collaborates with student leaders, staff, and campus partners on the allocation and reconciliation process to help achieve financial goals and departmental advancement. He also ensures that all financial transactions, auditing, and information system processes continue to meet the needs of the Dean of Students Office.
Sebastian comes to Brandeis from the University of Maryland, College Park where he worked in recruitment and financial roles for the School of Engineering and Office of Student Financial Aid. He holds a bachelor of science in Economics & Finance from Centre College, and a master of business administration from the University of Maryland.