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Erin Colwell

Erin Colwell

Director of Mane Connect Success Coaching and Center for Major Exploration

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Lake Forest College
  • Master of Science in Education in College Counseling from Old Dominion University

Fun Fact

I've traveled to nine Caribbean Islands; care to guess which ones?

Favorite Place in Norfolk

Hands down, The Chrysler Museum of Art. It's donation based!

Best Spot on Campus

I like the Student Rec Center (SRC) because of all the group exercise classes.

My Favorite Part of Advising

I love seeing students discover their own path and then later get to hear about their success stories.

Why ODU?

This college campus is a tight-knit community that values diversity and student success.

Best Lesson

The best way to grow the most is when you jump outside your comfort zone -- make a new friend; join a student organization; try a new experience; put yourself out there!


Kimberly Marx

Kimberly Marx

Assistant Director OF MANE CONNECT SUCCESS COACHING AND CENTER FOR MAJOR EXPLORATION

Education

  • Bachelor of Science in Human Services from Old Dominion University
  • Master of Science in Education from Old Dominion University

Fun Fact

I played NCAA field hockey as an undergraduate at ODU. Now, I love to run road races and play on competitive Kickball and Dodgeball teams.

Favorite Place in Norfolk

The Waterside District.

Best Spot on Campus

The dock behind Whitehurst Hall. It's got the best sunset in town!

My Favorite Part of Coaching

My favorite part of coaching is helping students see their own potential by recognizing their strengths and empowering them to be their own best advocates.

Why ODU?

The opportunities that ODU provided me both as an undergraduate and graduate student played a large role in shaping me into who I am personally and professionally. ODU celebrates diversity while recognizing and engaging students in their strengths.

Best Lesson

What I learned while attending ODU was college goes beyond classroom learning. In addition to knowledge related to my major, I learned so much about myself and the importance of getting involved. Volunteering and working at an internship impacted me greatly in my career development. Skills I developed in colleges such as time management, professional communication, leadership, and teamwork are vital to my day-to-day work now!






Meagan McMullen

Meagan McMullen

Success Coach/Advisor

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Winthrop University
  • Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Fun Fact

I trained to be a professional dancer for 20-ish years before an injury changed my plans - my original college major was dance education/performance!

Favorite Place in Norfolk

The Botanical Gardens.

My Favorite Part of Coaching

Empowering students as they figure out "how to college" and find their individual path to success.

Why ODU?

ODU dedicates itself to all areas of student success and achievement - in and outside of the classroom.

Advice for Freshmen

Ask the questions! No one has everything figured out, so they are probably wondering the same thing you are.


Katie St. John

Katie St. John

Senior Success Coach/Advisor

Education

  • Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Family Studies from the University of Connecticut
  • Master of Education in Counseling Psychology/College Student Personnel Administration from James Madison University

Fun Fact

I'm a huge New England Patriots fan. Go Pats!

Favorite Place in Norfolk

The Pagoda & Garden Fountain park.

Best Spot on Campus

Tonelson Garden in the middle of Webb Center. It's a great spot to have lunch outside.

My Favorite Part of Coaching

Getting to know each student, learning about your dreams, and then turning those dreams into a reality. I enjoy being there for you throughout the journey of college!

Why ODU?

ODU is a great place. There are so many opportunities and great people. It's also got a great sense of school spirit here. So, be sure to take advantage of everything this large university has to offer!

Advice for Freshmen

Set 2 alarms, check your email frequently, and ask questions!






Scott Thomas

Scott Thomas

Success Coach/Advisor

Education

  • Bachelor of Science in Sports Management from Old Dominion University
  • Master of Science in Education From Old Dominion University

Fun Fact

I love to travel. I've been to England, France, Denmark, Germany, Sweden, and Austria. I have also completed two half marathons.

Favorite Place in Norfolk

Town Point Park.

Best Spot on Campus

Kaufman Mall. It's nice to see all the trees and the grass. It's a great place to just sit and relax for a few minutes.

My Favorite Part of Coaching

I enjoy helping students learn and understand who they are as a person. I also enjoy seeing them grow over some time and realize their true potential.

Why ODU?

I had a great experience here as an undergraduate and graduate student. I love the community feel of the University, and how diverse the student population is.

Best Lesson

As a first-generation college student, I learned that it is okay to ask for assistance. The faculty and staff members are here to help you succeed. Do not be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and ask for help. Being the first person in my family to attend college, I found it important to explore different areas of the University and to make the college experience my own.


Jessica McGee

Jessica McGee

Success Coach/Advisor

Education

  • Bachelor of Science in Human services / Minor in Psychology from Old Dominion University
  • Master of Science in Education in Higher Education Student Affairs from Old Dominion University

Fun Fact

I love dance fitness.

Favorite Place in Norfolk

Anywhere in the Ghent area.

Best Spot on Campus

Starbucks and the Student Recreation Center.

My Favorite Part of Coaching

I enjoy empowering students to see their full potential and help them meet their goals.

Why ODU?

I love the diverse atmosphere and all of the great opportunities ODU has to offer.

Advice for Freshmen

Try to get involved on campus; never be afraid to ask questions!






Laura Donato

Laura Donato

Success Coach/Advisor

Education

  • Bachelor of Science in Exercise & Sprots Science from Coastal Carolina University.
  • Master of Science in Education from Old Dominion University.

Fun Fact

I'm in a Darius Rucker music video.

Favorite Place in Norfolk

Granby/Waterside, lots of restaurants and events happen there.

Best Spot on Campus

The pond area by the Oceanography building.

My Favorite Part of Coaching

Empowering students to achieve their goals!

Why ODU?

The environment at ODU is welcoming, and there are so many opportunities for students to take advantage of.

Advice for Freshmen

Check your email regularly; get involved with something on campus!


Leisha Barnes

Leisha Barnes

Office Manager

Education

  • University of Phoenix; Human Services Intended

Fun Fact

I served in the United States Marine Corps.

Favorite Place in Norfolk

Ocean View Beach & Pier; I love the view and also fishing.

Best Spot on Campus

Salad To Go! Always fresh and healthy eating.

My Favorite Part About Coaching

It gives Freshmen a vital connection to the University. They can discuss anything with their coach and are made to feel comfortable in doing so.

Why ODU?

The diverse atmosphere; I love meeting students from other cultures and countries.

Best Advice for Freshmen

Enjoy every facet of this time in your life. Make friends, learn and live!






Kelsey Whitlow

Kelsey Whitlow

Academic Advisor/Success Coach

Education

  • Bachelor of Science in Human Services and Minor in Communication from Old Dominion University
  • Master of Science in Education from Old Dominion University

Fun Fact

I've Island hopped in Greece and somehow wound up on national news while I was there exploring Athens.

Favorite Place in Norfolk

The Norfolk Premium Outlets, there is a lot of great places to shop and explore around that area. I also really enjoy Get Well Soon a local shop where I can go to do yoga and guided meditations.

Best Spot on Campus

The dock near Whitehurst beach. It is a floating dock where you can relax and catch a good sunset. Or Tonelson Garden, a nice outside nook where you can take a break and eat lunch.

My Favorite Part About Coaching

My favorite part about coaching is getting to witness the growth in my students from the beginning of the year to the end. The transition from high school to college can often be overwhelming so it is inspiring to see students overcome any barriers that they may have and achieve their goals both in and outside of the classroom.

Why ODU?

ODU holds a special spot in my heart because not only did I receive 2 degrees from ODU, but I also get to witness how supportive and friendly the community is from day-to-day. The campus just has a certain charm to it that I appreciated. ODU is a great place to learn & grow through whatever phase of life you are in!

Best Advice for Freshmen

Don't let the stress from classes, transitioning to college, or life stop you from achieving your dreams. Find what is important to you, what you value, and take the little steps each day to pursue those things. If you fall get back up


Stephanie Rudolph

Stephanie Rudolph

Success Coach/ Advisor

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Indiana State University
  • Master of Science in Education from Old Dominion University (graduating December 2022)

Fun Fact

I have a private pilot's license

Best Spot on Campus

The new Chemistry building! It has amazing views of the baseball field and the 2nd largest planetarium in Virginia.

My Favorite Part About Coaching

Hearing from each of the students that I work with about their diverse interests and experiences and helping them translate that into their path to success as a student and beyond.

Why ODU?

I admire ODU's focus on the success and upward social mobility of its students while also maintaining an exciting and engaging college experience.

Best Advice for Freshmen

Find your community, get involved, and don't be afraid to ask questions. There are lots of people rooting for you!



Emma Kearley

Emma Kearley

Success Coach/ Advisor

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from the University of North Florida
  • Master of Science in Higher Education from Old Dominion University

Fun Fact

I competed in the World Championships for Color Guard twice.

Favorite Place in Norfolk

I love Ghent but if I had to pick one place, I would definitely say Strawberry Fields. Their gelato is amazing!

Best Spot on Campus

The Michael and Kimthanh LĂȘ Planetarium. It is such a unique attraction to have on our campus.

My Favorite Part About Coaching

I love getting to know my students and helping them find and access new tools and resources to be successful in their goals.

Why ODU?

ODU knows that it has a diverse population of students, and they are intentional about providing resources to meet the needs of those students. I appreciate the opportunities ODU provided me and I hope to pay it forward with the next cohort of students.

Best Advice for Freshmen

Professors are people too! They understand that sometimes real life happens, just be sure to communicate with them and make sure to use proper email etiquette (if you don't know ask a success coach!)


Maria Doran

Maria Doran

Senior Success Coach/Advisor

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts in Foreign Language.
  • Master of Science in Education in College Counseling from Old Dominion University.

Fun Fact

I'm from Brazil and I speak Portuguese, Spanish, and Language.

Favorite Place in Norfolk

Naro movie Theater.

Best Spot on Campus

Webb Center.

My Favorite Part About Coaching

Helping students get to the finish line and strive for their full potential.

Why ODU?

Even though I am far away from home, I feel at home at ODU.

Best Advice for Freshmen

Give your best and don't be afraid to ask for help.