Advising for First-Year Students
Stephanie Delaney, Senior Academic Advisor, Mechanical Engineering & Mechanics
Stephanie has been advising undergraduate students for over 20 years, mostly in the engineering field, and has worked for Drexel’s MEM department twice-in the early 2000s and then rejoining the college in 2015. She received her bachelor’s degree in Communications from Marymount University in Arlington, Virginia and her master’s degree in Communications from Drexel University. She has additional graduate level certificates and experience in Student Affairs and LGBTQ Health & Wellness. In addition to her work advising students, Stephanie works closely with the Diversity and Equity Office, the Study Abroad Office and college outreach efforts. Stephanie is the proud mom of two college-aged daughters, so she is very tuned in to the excitement and concerns of incoming first year students. When she’s not working, Stephanie can be found driving around her new hometown-she just moved-trying in vain not to get lost, traveling with her husband and texting her daughters non-stop (Steph’s tip: text home once in a while. They miss you!).
Dionne Gordon-Starks, Senior Academic Advisor, Civil, Architectural & Environmental Engineering
Dionne is a Senior Academic Advisor within the College of Engineering and adjuncts with the First Year Experience Program within Goodwin College and the Lindy Center. She specifically advises CAEE and Undeclared students within Engineering. She has been employed with the university for 14 years! She initials started as an Academic Advisor within the Goodwin College of Professional Studies, where she advised non-traditional and adult learners.
Dionne has been a professional advisor within the field of higher education for over 16 years. Her background in career and academic advising has helped her to shape a very holistic approach to the field of advising. She has special interests in student engagement and the retention of first generation and cultural minorities within STEM.
Dionne is a native Philadelphian, earning her bachelor’s at Saint Joseph’s University where she majored in English and earned her Master’s in Higher Education Administration at Drexel University, where she completed as an adult learner while working full-time and caring for her family.
Will Grogan, Academic Advisor, Construction Management
Will Grogan graduated from the University of Scranton in 2011 with a B.A. in Communication. He started working in higher education in 2012 running social justice education at Wheeling Jesuit University. Since then, Will has worked in student affairs, alumni relations, and financial aid. Working at Drexel University since 2018, Will enjoys connecting students to the right resources.
Will lives in the city with his wife. When he’s not working with our Construction Management students, he enjoys woodworking, Philly sports, and D&D.
Tom Hindman, Academic Advisor, Electrical & Computer Engineering
Tom Hindman, a proud military brat, joined Drexel’s College of Engineering in 2019 as a Program Manager. He has since transitioned into Academic Advising and is excited to help ECE students succeed and thrive. Tom is co-director of the Engineering Learning Community. Before joining the Drexel team, he spent five years working closely with Doctoral Students at UPenn. He earned a BA in Political Science from Temple University. In his spare time, you can find him cycling on the Schuylkill River Trail, petting large tabby cats, drinking locally sourced coffee, and vastly overestimating his basketball skills.
Sarit Kunz, Assistant Director of Student Services, Materials Science & Engineering
Sarit Kunz has worked at Drexel University for over 18 years, and has been with the Materials Science and Engineering Department since 2011, where she currently serves as the Assistant Director of Student Services within the department. A Drexel alumna, Sarit received her B.S. in Hotel and Restaurant Management, minor in Business Administration in 2000. Prior to her work at Drexel, Sarit worked at Le Bec Fin, Brasserie Perrier, and Aramark. In her current role, Sarit handles all interactions within the Materials Science and Engineering department with current undergraduate and graduate students and academic affairs, including advising, scheduling, acting as a liaison to faculty advisors, curriculum planning and scheduling, student retention, Materials Science and Engineering mentorship program and ABET support. She lives in Philadelphia with her family and enjoys running (Dublin Full Marathon 2015).
Ilene Appel Marker, Director of Student Services, College of Engineering
Ilene Appel Marker has been a higher education professional for over 30 years. Ilene advises undeclared first year students, works with students who want to transfer into the College of Engineering from other colleges/schools at Drexel, and teaches the capstone course of the Engineering Leadership Scholars program. She started her Drexel career in 1989 when she helped to launch the Drexel Architectural Engineering Program. Since then, she has run a partnership between Drexel and the School District of Philadelphia and set up the first Drexel online Teacher Education Program. Ilene has taught composition at Temple University, run the office of the chief academic officer at UC San Diego, served as administrator for the Temple School of Medicine’s educational programs, overseen numerous grants, and given a wide range of professional development courses. As Director of Student Services in the College of Engineering, Ilene is responsible for undergraduate student advising, the Academic Center for Engineers (ACE), the Engineering Learning Community, Engineering Leadership Scholars, NAE Grand Challenges Scholars Program, college-affiliated student organizations, and Summer DELTA Program. A native of Philadelphia, Ilene has lived in Charlottesville, VA; Austin, TX; and San Diego, CA. She is an ardent fan of live music and Phillies baseball and invites you to visit her office to see some of her favorite memorabilia.
Jennifer Matthews, Assistant Director of Advising, Mechanical Engineering & Mechanics
Jennifer Matthews has worked at Drexel for over 18 years and is dedicated to helping her students succeed. Jenn is a native of South Jersey and graduated from Randolph-Macon College (Richmond, VA) with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. Jenn has a true passion for sports and was a four-year starter on the RMC women’s soccer team. She went on to attend graduate school here at Drexel University (go Dragons!) where she earned a Master of Science in Education. Jenn’s husband also works at Drexel and together they have four children: Carter, Brynn, Reid, & Emerson Mae. In her spare time (ha, with 4 kids that’s almost comical), she enjoys coaching her kids soccer teams, dragon boating with the non-profit organization she co-founded, drinking Dunkin Donuts coffee, cheering on her kiddos, and spending time with family and friends.
Micalena Sallavanti, Senior Academic Advisor, Chemical Engineering and Civil, Architectural & Environmental Engineering
Micalena Sallavanti is excited to work with incoming engineering students at Drexel. She is passionate about learning, and is committed to promoting growth and development by creating a space where students feel listened to and supported. In addition to advising, Micalena also co-directs the Engineering Learning Community. A proud native of Scranton, she attended Marywood University (Scranton, PA), where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Master of Arts in Mental Health Counseling. She is an avid baseball fan, who enjoys rooting for her favorite team—the New York Yankees. In her spare time, she likes to craft, try new restaurants, and watch true crime documentaries.
Gerry Willis, Associate Director, Engineering Technology
Gerry Willis graduated from Drexel University with a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing and Master’s degree in Higher Education. She is the Academic Advisor for all Engineering Technology students. Gerry has worked at Drexel for over 16 years and is dedicated to help her students navigate the system and succeed in their academic career. Drexel has given her the unique opportunity to view the system as a student and as an administrator. Combining this knowledge allows her to find individual solutions for students’ problems. Together with her husband, Drexel COE graduate, and son, Gabriel, they enjoys traveling, cycling, gardening and cooking.