Conference attendees will have the opportunity to take part in a Professional Coaching Session. The Professional Coaching Session is an opportunity for a new/mid-level professional to talk with a seasoned professional about their career goals and get suggestions for next steps, opportunities to gain new knowledge and develop networking skills.


Salvador Mena, PhD

Salvador Mena, Ph.D.

 Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Session Block 2: 2:25pm – 3:25pm

Learn more about Dr. Salvador Mena

Born in Harlem, New York and raised by a single parent in the South Bronx, Dr. Salvador Mena is a graduate of the New York City public school system, and was the first in his family to attend college. Leaving New York City to attend the University of Maine proved to be a transformative experience that inspired him to pursue a career in higher education and reaffirmed his commitment to issues of inclusion and social justice.

Joining Rutgers in August of 2014 as the Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, Dr. Mena was elevated to the role of Senior Associate Vice Chancellor in 2017, and Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs in 2018. As Senior Associate Vice Chancellor, he managed the day-to-day operations of the Division of Student Affairs and helped provide leadership for the 25 offices and departments that make up the division. Specifically, he supervised the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Engagement, and departments of Dining Services, Residence Life, Student Centers and Activities, and Cultural Centers.

Dr. Mena began his career in education by serving as a Student Advisor with Job Corps – a residentially based Federal Department of Labor program that offers at-risk young women and men, ages 16 to 24, opportunities to earn academic and vocational credentials and assists them with securing placement in education, employment, or the military upon graduation from the program.

With a robust professional history of serving students in various administrative roles at both public and private colleges and universities, Dr. Mena has since held positions at the College of Staten Island of the City University of New York, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of Maryland–College Park, Goucher College, Brown University, Illinois State University, and the University of Maine.

As the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students at the College of Staten Island, Dr. Mena served as deputy to the Vice President for Student Affairs and worked collaboratively with Student Affairs, Academic Affairs, Enrollment Management, Finance and Administration, and Advancement colleagues to support student success and enhance the overall student experience.

While at UNC-Chapel Hill, he served as the Special Assistant to the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Director of Strategic Initiatives and Planning for the Division of Student Affairs. In this role, he provided broad leadership for strategic planning efforts, developed a divisional assessment plan, coordinated professional development programs, led divisional diversity efforts, and worked on special projects and initiatives.

From 2004-2005, he served as a doctoral fellow at the University of Maryland–College Park where he served as a research assistant on a study looking at access and success factors for Latino undergraduates at the institution. At Goucher College, he served as the Associate Dean for Community Living and Multicultural Affairs where he collaborated on initiatives related to residential living, college access, diversity programming, and retention of students of color, first-generation and low-income students.

Over a four-year period, he also served as a residence life educator at the University of Maine and Illinois State University where he was responsible for managing residential facilities, fostering community, and facilitating co-curricular experiences. While at Brown University, he served as an Assistant Dean for Student Life and had responsibility for assisting with a broad portfolio that included crisis management, residence life staffing and programming, academic advising, diversity programming and outreach, judicial affairs, and student leadership development.

Professionally, Dr. Mena has also been involved with a number of higher education professional organizations, including the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA). He served a two-year appointment on the ACPA/NASPA Joint Task Force on the Future of Student Affairs and served as the inaugural Co-Chair of NASPA’s Latina/o Knowledge Community. He also served as a faculty member and organizer of NASPA’s inaugural New Professionals Institute and served on the NASPA 2017 National Conference Planning Committee. He currently serves an Editorial Board Member on the NASPA Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice (JSARP). Dr. Mena is a regular presenter at national conferences and has published in the Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice and contributed a book chapter in Cultural Centers in Higher Education: Perspectives on Identity, Theory, and Practice. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing.

Earning a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Master’s of Education in Student Development and Higher Education Administration from the University of Maine, he received his Doctor of Philosophy degree in Higher Education, Student Affairs, and International Education Policy from the University of Maryland, College Park. Dr. Mena’s dissertation study titled – The New South: A Case Analysis of Latino Students Attending a Historically Black University in North Carolina – focused on understanding the growing phenomena of Latinos enrolling at HBCUs in the South.

Anne Newman, Ph.D.

AVC for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Session Block 2: 2:25pm – 3:25pm

Learn more about Dr. Anne Newman

Dr. Anne Newman serves as the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Dean of Students. Anne joined the Rutgers community in 2010 as the Director of Student Conduct and was instrumental in the development of an educational student conduct process here at Rutgers. This is Anne’s second year as Associate Vice Chancellor and Dean of Students. Anne earned a B.B.A. degree in Finance and Human Resources from Adelphi University, a M.S. degree in Higher Education Administration from The Florida State University and a Ph.D. in Higher Educational Administration from Illinois State University. In addition to work, Anne also teaches courses in the College Student Affairs Program. Anne’s background is in residence life, student conduct, conflict resolution services, and research and assessment. When she is not working, Anne is spending time with her family, including husband Scott and daughter Joanna. Anne is an avid sports fan and enjoys anything music and musicals.

Michelle Shostack, Ed.D.

Assistant Dean and Director, Rutgers University

Session Block 1: 11:50am – 12:40pm

Session Block 2: 2:25pm – 3:25pm

Learn more about Dr. Michelle Shostack

Dr. Michelle Shostack has been with the Educational Opportunity Fund Program since 1987. She has held practically every staff position within EOF, including: tutor, residence counselor, professional counselor, developmental specialist, director, and dean. Dr. Shostack is a proud three-time alumna of Rutgers University. She has a bachelor’s degree from Rutgers College, where she majored in biochemistry and minored in psychology, and holds a master’s degree and doctorate in counseling psychology from the Graduate School of Education at Rutgers University. Dr. Shostack completed her pre-doctoral counseling psychology internship at the Johns Hopkins University Counseling and Student Development Center. She was the director of the Douglass College EOF Program at the time that the liberal arts colleges’ EOF Programs at Rutgers-New Brunswick merged to form the School of Arts and Sciences (SAS) EOF Program. Dr. Shostack served as the Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs in the SAS EOF Program, and in August 2013 she became the Assistant Dean and Director of the SAS EOF Program, the largest EOF Program in New Jersey, serving over 1300 first-generation college students and overseeing a multi-million dollar budget.

Francesca M. Maresca, Ph.D., CHES©

Director, Health Outreach, Promotion & Education, Rutgers University

Session Block 1: 11:50am – 12:40pm

Session Block 2: 2:25pm – 3:25pm

Learn more about Dr. Francesca Maresca

Francesca M. Maresca, Ph.D., CHES©, is the Director of Health Outreach, Promotion and Education (HOPE) at Rutgers University-New Brunswick, and is responsible for assessing the health and wellness of the Rutgers community, delivering effective interventions, and promoting the health and well-being of the community. Francesca coordinates two peer education programs, the Sexual Health Advocates and Peer Mental Health Educators and the Rapid Result HIV Testing on campus. She is the co-chair of the Rutgers Community Approaches to Suicide Prevention and the Health & Wellness Committee and a member of the Alcohol & Other Drug Prevention Committee, Diversity Council and Assessment working Group. Francesca is an adjunct instructor for the Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy and the Graduate School of Education in both the traditional classroom and on-line environments. Her areas of expertise include sexual and reproductive health, mental health/suicide prevention, LGBTQ health and wellness in higher education.

Kelly S. Hennessy, Ed.D.

Interim Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs, The College of New Jersey

Session Block 1: 11:50am – 12:40pm

Session Block 2: 2:25pm – 3:25pm

Learn more about Dr. Kelly S. Hennessy

Kelly S. Hennessy serves as the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs at The College of New Jersey with oversight for Residential Education, Housing, Dining, Student Involvement, Fraternity & Sorority Life, Student Transitions, Brower Student Center, Bookstore, and major auxiliary contracts. Previously she served as Associate Dean of Students with oversight of Alcohol Drug Education Program (ADEP), Anti-Violence Initiatives (AVI), the Center for Mindfulness and Compassion, Collegiate Recovery Community, Crisis Management Response & the Care Team/BIT Team, Residential Education, Welcome Week, and Religious & Spiritual Life.  Dr. Hennessy has previously served as the Director of Residential Education at The College of New Jersey, Assistant Director for Training and Personnel at Rutgers University, Educational Opportunity Fund Counselor at Rutgers University and started her career at The University at Buffalo working in Residence Life and Housing. Dr. Hennessy has served as the President for The Jersey Alliance, New Jersey’s state affiliate of ACPA and is currently NASPA Region II’s Foundation Ambassador. Dr. Hennessy’s doctoral work was completed at Rutgers University in Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education and her dissertation was titled Making Connections: Cultivating Social Capital Among Low Income First Generation College Students.

Jordan Draper Ed.D

Assistant Vice President & Dean of Students, The College of New Jersey

Session Block 1: 11:50am – 12:40pm

Learn more about Dr. Jordan Draper

Dr. Jordan Draper has focused much of her Student Affairs experience within the Student Conduct and Title IX fields. Dr. Draper has worked in Student Conduct at the University of Maryland and Rutgers University and then transitioned to a focus on Title IX, serving as the Title IX Coordinator at The College of New Jersey and previously as a Title IX Investigator at Rutgers University. Dr. Draper currently serves as the Assistant Vice President & Dean of Students at The College of New Jersey where she oversees case management, students of concern, Title IX, student conduct, career and leadership development and compliance within the division of Student Affairs. Dr. Draper completed her doctorate at Rutgers University in Education, Culture, and Society in January 2017. Her dissertation explores an online sexual violence program and evaluates whether students participating had an increase of knowledge regarding sexual violence, changed attitudes around rape myths, and whether they felt more comfortable reporting incidents to University staff members after participating in the program. Dr. Draper earned a Master of Arts degree in Higher Education Administration from the University of Maryland in 2012 and a Bachelor of Science degree in Political Science from Radford University in 2010.

Demond T. Hargrove Ph.D.

Vice President for Student Development, Union County College

Session Block 1: 11:50am – 12:40pm

Session Block 2: 2:25pm – 3:25pm

Learn more about Dr. Demond T. Hargrove

Dr. Demond T. Hargrove, a Hartford, Connecticut native, currently serves as vice president for student development at Union County College. Dr. Hargrove holds a Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration & Leadership from Seton Hall University, a M.A. in Counseling Psychology from NJCU, and earned his B.S. in Political Science at Jersey City State College. With over 20 years of student affairs and enrollment management experience, Demond has held various positions that include: adjunct faculty, associate vice president for student affairs, assistant vice president for student affairs, director of the NJCU TRiO Learning Communities program (TLC), associate director of undergraduate admissions, NCAA Division III athletic academic advisor, and NJCU Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) co-chair. As Union County College’s chief student affairs officer, Demond is a member of the President’s Leadership Council (PLC), providing oversight in the planning, and management of the Division of Student Development via the creation and maintenance of a multi-million dollar divisional budget, assessment planning, and human resource management activities. In addition, Demond collaborates with college-wide stakeholders in the development and implementation of student retention and completion initiatives, and provides leadership for the 16 departments, including: Office of the Dean of Students, Office of the Dean of College Life, Office of the Dean of Student Success, Admissions, Records and Registration, and the Office of Financial Aid. Dr. Hargrove is a published author and has presented nationally for the Middle States Commission on Higher Education; National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA); New Jersey Council of County Colleges (NJCCC); Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE); and the New Jersey Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NJASFAA) on the topics of intercollegiate athletics, student leadership development, community college student success, minority male retention, and college student resilience. Dr. Hargrove is a 2017 Protégé of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities’ (AASCU) Millennium Leadership Initiative (MLI), a 2016 alumnus of the NCAA Athletics Direct Report (ADR) Institute, and completed the American Council on Education Spectrum Aspiring Leaders Program in 2015. Dr. Hargrove’s research interests include Black male college student academic resilience, persistence, and collegiate experiences of underrepresented populations. Demond is involved in his community as a member of the Board of Directors for The Boy’s and Girl’s Club of Union County, a coach for Union Rams Pop Warner football, and Union Little League baseball. Demond has resided in Union Township since 2004 with his wife Silvana and two sons Gabriel and Cristian.

Corlisse Thomas Ed.D.

Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, Rutgers University-Newark

Session Block 1: 11:50am – 12:40pm

Session Block 2: 2:25pm – 3:25pm

Learn more about Dr. Corlisse Thomas

Dr. Corlisse Thomas is the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at Rutgers University-Newark. Dr. Thomas oversees a range of professionals and departments dedicated to student life and leadership, health and wellness, athletics, diversity and inclusion, and housing and residential life. Prior to coming to RU-N, Corlisse served in a variety of leadership roles including AVP at Baruch College of the City University of New York (CUNY) and at Stevens Institute of Technology, and Associate Dean of Students at Columbia University. Corlisse Thomas received her EdD and MA in Higher Education from Teachers College, Columbia University, and her BA in Child Study from Tufts University.