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Staff Profiles - Columbus State University

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CSU ADVISE

Staff Profiles

Melissa Young

Dr. Melissa Young
Director of Advising
CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 236, young_melissa@columbusstate.edu, 706-565-1316

Melissa Young holds a Doctorate in Education from Columbus State University. She has worked in higher education for over 20 years. Her research include best practices in academic advising, instructional technology in online programs, retention and persistence of non-traditional college students and the impact of socioeconomic background on student success.

Kelly Koch

Kelly Koch
Associate Director
CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 243, koch_kelly@columbusstate.edu, 706-507-8788

Kelly Koch is an alumna of Columbus State University. She received her B.A. in English Language and Literature, with a Concentration in Professional Writing in December 2007. During her undergraduate career, she received the 2006 Professional Writing Major of the Year award. Kelly began her career at CSU as an undergraduate tutor in the Writing Center during the summer of 2005. She began working with CSU ADVISE in January 2008 as an administrative assistant. She began working as an Academic Advisor in December 2011. Kelly received her Master of Education in Educational Leadership - Higher Education from CSU in 2020. In her free time, Kelly enjoys spending time with her family, bargain shopping/couponing, reading, and visiting Disney World.

Janie Henderson

Janie Henderson
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Frank Brown Hall 2028, henderson_janie@columbusstate.edu, 706-565-1435

Janie Henderson is a graduate of Columbus State with a Degree in Early Childhood Education. She earned her Masters and Specialist Degrees from Troy State University. She taught in Harris County for 30 years and retired in 2015. She started at CSU the summer of 2015 as an Advisor in the SAFE office for Early Childhood majors. She enjoys spending time with her two children, crafting, baking and watching the Braves on TV.

Jay Davis

Jay Davis
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 233, davis_thomas2@columbusstate.edu, 706-507-8785

Jay Davis is an alum of Columbus State University where he received a BA in English/Language and Literature. In addition to his education, Jay has over 8 years experience at CSU in undergraduate admissions and recruitment. He has 4 kids, 2 dogs, loves sports and has a passion for playing guitar.

Joseph Sawyer

Joseph Sawyer
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE -Simon Schwob Memorial Library 241, sawyer_joseph@columbusstate.edu, 706-507-8782

Joseph Sawyer is a graduate of Columbus State University. He began his professional career at TSYS in 2004. Joseph joined CSU as an Academic Advisor and Retention Specialist in July of 2013. Joseph also serves as a liaison for military members stationed at Fort Benning, Georgia.

Julie Lowry

Julie Lowry
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 232, lowry_julianne@columbusstate.edu, 706-507-8783

Julie Lowry is an alum from Columbus State. After completing her education, she decided to stay with CSU as she began her professional career. She has worked in the Academic Center for Tutoring, Admissions, and is now an Academic Advisor in the College of Education and Health Professions. Using her range of inter-department knowledge, her goal is to be an approachable and effective resource to all students and faculty/staff who come to her.

Kaylen Deal

Kaylen Deal
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Frank Brown Hall 2032, deal_kaylen@columbusstate.edu, 706-565-1329

Kaylen Deal is an alumna of Troy University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Education. She has been an
Academic Advisor at CSU since 2013. Kaylen received her Master of Education in Educational Leadership - Higher Education from
CSU in 2020.  In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with family, reading, and volunteering in the community.

Lora Taft

Lora Taft
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Frank Brown Hall 2026, taft_lora@columbusstate.edu, 706-565-1434

Lora Taft received her MSEd from Columbus College and her Education Specialist from Troy University. She taught elementary school for 27 years and then became a Media/Instructional Technology Specialist for 10 years before retiring from Harris County. Lora Taft is also a Veteran serving 30 years in the Army Reserves retiring as a Colonel. She enjoys scrapbooking, spending time with her grandkids, and traveling places on her bucket list.

Kristi Rosengrant

Kristi Rosengrant
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist

CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 239, rosengrant_kristi@columbusstate.edu, 706-507-8789

Kristi, is alumna from Georgia Southern University where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Family and Consumer Science with an emphasis in Family Services. She has been with Admission for the past five years. When she is out of the office you can count on her to be on an adventure because she loves to travel. She enjoys spending time with her family and her dog.

Sherri Nagamatsu

Sherri Nagamatsu
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 240, nagamatsu_sherri@columbusstate.edu, 706-565-1328

Sherri Nagamatsu received her B.A. in Economics from the University of Hawaii and MSFE Master Science in Foundations of Education from Troy University. She enjoys spending time time with her family.

Tamika McKenzie

Tamika McKenzie
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 242, mckenzie_tamika@columbusstate.edu, 706-507-8564

Tamika McKenzie joined CSU in June 2014 and serves as the advisor for the sociology and criminal justice programs. She holds a Master of Education in History from Troy University and MS in Organizational Leadership from CSU.

Theresa Conklin

Theresa Conklin
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Frank Brown Hall 2032, conklin_marie@columbusstate.edu, 706-507-8563

Theresa Conklin is an alumna of Columbus State University. She received her B.A. in Liberal Arts with a minor in Business in August 2016. Theresa began her career at Columbus State as an Administrative Assistant in the School of Nursing in July 2010. In March 2016, she worked in the Registrars Office as a Transfer Credit Representative. Theresa began working as an Academic Advisor and Retention Specialist to RN-BSN students in August 2017. She enjoys spending time with family, reading and playing cards and board games.

Samuel Coomes

Samuel Coomes
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Frank Brown Hall 2025, coomes_samuel@columbusstate.edu, 706-565-1353

Sam Coomes attended St. Mary's College of Maryland where he earned his Bachelor of Arts in History in 2018. While at St. Mary's, Sam was a member of the varsity cross country team and worked as a resident assistant. He then received his Masters in Education from Salisbury University in 2020 while working in the Center for Student Achievement and the Academic Advising Center.

Emily Bagwell

Emily Bagwell
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 230, bagwell_emily1@columbusstate.edu, 706-565-1355

Emily Bagwell is an alumna of the University of Mississippi where she received both a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Management and a Master of Arts degree in Higher Education and Student Personnel. Emily joined CSU as an Academic Advisor and Retention Specialist in June of 2021. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, antiquing, and spending time with her husband and goldendoodle.

Shaneka Thrash

Shaneka Thrash
Academic Advisor & Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 231, thrash_shaneka@columbusstate.edu, 706-507-8784

Shaneka Thrash is an alumna of the University of West Georgia where she earned her B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Criminology as well as her M.Ed in Professional Counseling with a concentration in College Student Affairs. During her time in higher education, she has worked with students in health education and career/professional development. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, trying new fun activities and spending time with her family and friends.

headshot of Jackie Lynch

Jackie Lynch
Academic Advisor/Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 238, lynch_jacqueline@columbusstate.edu, 706-507-8780

Jackie is an alumna of Stetson University where she doubled majored and earned Bachelor of Arts degrees in Psychology and Humanities. Jackie comes to CSU with extensive experience in social services from her time spent working at the Muscogee County Division of Family and Children Services. Thus far, Jackie has dedicated her professional career to helping others and is excited for the opportunity to help CSU students achieve their educational goals. In her free time, Jackie likes spending time with her husband and friends, stressing said husband out by sneaking plants into the house, and being a proud dog mom to Astrid, her aggressively affectionate Australian Shepherd.

headshot of Seiji Wallis

Seiji Wallis
Academic Advisor/Retention Specialist
CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 237, wallis_seiji@columbusstate.edu
706-569-4525

Seiji Wallis began his career as a professional counselor in Colorado, providing mental health services at several institutions, including a state prison, hospital, and juvenile diversion program. He is an alumnus of The University of Georgia where he earned a B.S. in Psychology and served as a research assistant in the Department of Psychology. Afterward, he received an M.S. in Community Counseling from Columbus State University and interned at the CSU Counseling Center. Outside of work, Seiji is a musician and enjoys composing music, watching films, and spending time with his amazing dog Lulu, who is a certified professional therapy dog.

headshot of Elaine Streeter

Elaine Streeter
Student Support Services Coordinator
CSU ADVISE - Simon Schwob Memorial Library 201, streeter_tonya@columbusstate.edu
706-507-8780

Elaine Streeter graduated from CSU with a BA in English Creative Writing in 2017. She began her career at CSU as an undergraduate working as a tutor for the school’s Writing Center in 2015. In 2018, she became an administrative assistant for the Academic Center for Tutoring. In addition to her role with the Academic Center for Tutoring, she has been working with CSU Advise as a Student Support Services Coordinator since June 2022. She loves dogs and has a Chiweenie named Kuma.

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