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ERCAdvisingStaffWI20

Advising Staff

  • Sarah Spear-Barrett - Dean of Academic Advising

    Sarah Spear-Barrett - Dean of Academic Advising

    Sarah, a UC San Diego Revelle College graduate with a degree in Sociology, began her career as an Orientation Leader and Intern at Revelle College. She earned a Masters Degree in Education with a Concentration in Counseling from San Diego State University while working full time. She worked at the ASUCSD, Revelle College, Muir College, and came to ERC in 1995 as a Senior Academic Counselor and then continued from there all the way to Dean of Academic Advising. Her favorite part about her work is mentoring the staff and implementing the advising mission of providing care and support for ERC students while helping the explore all of the options available. One of her joys is seeing students graduate who needed a little extra support and help along the way. In her spare time, she loves to be with her husband, catch up with her three sons who are in college, or graduated from college (one is a TMC graduate).   Her advice to students is “to ask for help.  There are many of us on campus who made it our careers to be here to help you succeed.”
  • Melissa Ellew - Assistant Dean of Advising

    Melissa Ellew - Assistant Dean of Advising

    Melissa graduated from UC San Diego's Revelle College with a B.A. in Communication.  As a student, she worked for the Academic Internship Program and found that she liked working with students so much, she came back to work at UC San Diego and is currently ERC’s Assistant Dean of Advising.  After taking some time off school (highly recommended) and while working (a bit more challenging), she completed her M.A. in Higher Education Leadership at the University of San Diego. She finds helping students transition to UC San Diego to be very fulfilling and enjoys meeting with students. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with her friends and family.
  • Ivonne Avila - Senior Academic Counselor

    Ivonne Avila - Senior Academic Counselor

    Ivonne, graduated from UC San Diego with a B.A. in History (United States) and minor in Biology.  She began her advising career as an undergraduate Peer Advisor, and discovered that she loves helping, guiding, mentoring, and teaching students. Throughout her years at UC San Diego, she worked as an undergraduate academic advisor in the departments of: Ethnic Studies, History, and Computer Science and Engineering. She took a three year break from UC San Diego, and worked as an Admissions Evaluator at SJSU. As a first generation graduate, her goal is to provide students with support and knowledge on how to make the most of their experience at UC San Diego.   On her free time, she likes to teach indoor cycling, circuit training, boot camp, play beach volleyball, and spend time with her family.  

  • Gloria Aquino - Academic Counselor

    Gloria Aquino - Academic Counselor

    Gloria began her Academic Advising career at UC Davis. After moving to San Diego in 1991, she joined ERC Academic Advising as an Intake Counselor and later as an Academic Counselor.  She is the coordinator of the Degree Audit and Graduation process and liaison to Veterans Affairs. Gloria truly loves what she does stating “it’s all about the undergrads, I love working with them, laughing and crying with them, sharing the 'aha' moments, seeing them mature, giving them hugs at commencement, hearing them say thank you, and knowing I was briefly part of their lives.” In her time away from ERC Gloria enjoys raising her four boys, cooking, playing piano, attending youth symphony concerts (her twins play the oboe and violin), road trips, the beach, books that make her cry, food network, reality shows, and family gossip!
  • Lorna Hirae-Reese - Senior Academic Counselor and International Programs Specialist

    Lorna Hirae-Reese - Senior Academic Counselor and International Programs Specialist

    Lorna graduated from the University of Hawaii, Manoa with a B.A. in Public Relations. From Hawaii to Oregon State University, Lorna received her M.Ed. in College Student Services Administration and ten years later a M.S. in Marriage, Family and Child Counseling from San Diego State University. Lorna started her career at UC San Diego as an Assistant Resident Dean at Revelle College and later held a position as an Assistant Dean of Students at Eleanor Roosevelt College. Lorna has also worked at Project Concern International as a Volunteer and Intern Coordinator, United States International University as a Housing Director and an Assistant Dean of Students, and CSU San Marcos as the first Housing personnel. As a first-generation college graduate, Lorna is committed to promoting access and equity in education and helping students to be the best that they can be in college.

  • Julie Nguyen - Senior Academic Counselor

    Julie Nguyen - Senior Academic Counselor

    Julie graduated from UC San Diego's Eleanor Roosevelt College with a B.A. in International Business and a B.A. in Communications. During her time as an undergraduate student, Julie was involved as a Freshmen, Transfer, and Senior Orientation Leader for ERC. Additionally, she worked closely with the Chancellor's Associates Scholars Program (CASP) as both a Peer Mentor for incoming freshmen students as well as a Student Office Coordinator for the program's office. She loves working with students and wanted to continue providing support for them as they navigate higher education. In her free time, she loves attending concerts with her friends and trying out new food places. She also enjoys traveling when she has the opportunity whether it be visiting a new city in the states or going abroad!
  • Lydia Ramirez - Senior Academic Counselor

    Lydia Ramirez - Senior Academic Counselor

    Lydia graduated from the University of San Diego with a B.A in Spanish and a minor in Sociology.  She completed her Masters Degree at Point Loma Nazarene University in Education - Counseling and Guidance. As part of Lydia’s graduate work, she was an intern at Barrio Logan College Institute, a program working to motivate underrepresented, first generation students to consider and qualify for post-secondary educational opportunities. She began her advising career as Graduate Advisor at UC San Diego in the department of Engineering. Lydia works closely with our Chancellor’s Associates Scholars Program, Black Alumni Scholarship Fund students and the scholarship programs to help students maintain eligibility. Lydia loves working with students. Her goal is to help students achieve their academic and professional goals. During her free time she enjoys spending time with family, friends, her dog, reading and traveling.

  • Thalia Roman - Academic Counselor

    Thalia Roman - Academic Counselor

    Thalia graduated from UC San Diego’s Muir College with a B.A. in Human Development and a minor in Psychology. During her time at UCSD, Thalia was a board member for a student organization called Chicanos/Latinos for Community Medicine where she discovered her passion for helping students, especially those who are underrepresented in higher education, reach their academic and professional goals. She went on to work as an advising intern for her home college and has gained additional experience working with students in the Warren Residential Life Office and COSMOS. As a first-generation college graduate, Thalia is dedicated to providing the necessary support and resources for students to succeed academically and make the most of their time here at UCSD. Outside of work, Thalia enjoys hiking, playing volleyball, watching soccer and spending time with her family.

Peer Advising Staff for 2020 - 2021

  • Lauren Dung

    Lauren Dung

    Major: Marine Biology
    Minor: Environmental Systems
    Graduating Quarter: Spring, 2021
    Hometown: San Francisco, CA
    Years as an ERC Peer Advisor: 3
    Cocurricular Activities: Peer Educator at the Academic Integrity Office
    Career Goals: I hope to work at an aquarium doing research, animal husbandry, and conservation.

Advising Student Intern

  • Sabrina Mesropian

    Sabrina Mesropian

    Major: Political Science - Public Policy
    Minor: Environmental Studies
    Graduating Quarter: Spring 2021
    Hometown: Santa Clarita, CA
    Years as an ERC Advising Student Intern: Started Fall 2020
    Cocurricular Activities: Little Food Pantry Committee, UCSD Women's Center Volunteer
    Career Goals: Exploring local government and city management, I love policy especially at a local level