From the Student Services VP: New appointments, webinar series continues

virginia_fraire-02-2016Happy fall! I want to bring you up-to-date on some important news from Student Services.

First, I invite you to join me Friday, November 11, for the second session of a webinar series on the college’s transition to guided pathways. I want to thank the faculty and staff (more than 150!) who joined Dr. Cook and me for the first webinar on October 20. If you missed it and would like to view a recording of the session, contact Dr. Richard Armenta ( We’ve also compiled responses to questions asked during the session. View Guided Pathways update: FAQs about onboarding.

Dates, times, and topics of future webinars are:

Friday, November 11; 8:30 a.m.: “Advising — The Pivotal Link to Student Success”
Friday, December 9; 8:30 a.m.: Counseling
Friday, January 27; 1:30 p.m.: Early Alert & Academic Standards of Progress
Friday, February 10, 8:30 a.m.: Learning Support

Click here for details about accessing the webinars.

New deans, counselors

I am pleased to announce several important appointments in the division. The following deans assumed their roles in late October. We also have appointed seven counselors who will support student persistence and success by promoting positive mental health and wellness behaviors. They also will help the college adhere to legislative and statutory requirements regarding safe, healthy, and non-discriminatory learning environments. These are not new positions — they are lateral transfers from the existing pool of faculty counselors.

I hope you will join me in extending the following individuals a heartfelt congratulations.

Ruth Rodriguez-Reinhart is dean of student services at Riverside Campus. Since joining ACC in 2006 she has served as a counselor at South Austin Campus and adjunct professor of student development. She is a Licensed Master Social Worker who has worked with diverse populations. Ruth earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio and a master’s degree in social work from Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio. She currently is working on her doctorate in Community College Leadership at National American University’s Roueche Graduate Center.

Rosa Rodriguez-Alvarez is assistant dean of student services at South Austin Campus. Since joining ACC in 2011 she has worked as an assistant counselor and professor at Riverside and as a part-time counselor at multiple campuses. Before joining ACC Rosa managed the Community Recovery Team at Austin Travis County Integral Care and was a counselor at Central Texas College. She served at Camp Arifjan Army base in Kuwait, providing education services and academic counseling for soldiers. She holds a master’s degree in counseling from Texas State University, a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Texas at Austin, and an associate degree in psychology from ACC.

Jim Boullosa is assistant dean of student services at Pinnacle Campus. Jim joined ACC in 2006. He was an advising specialist for eight years and has been an advising supervisor at Pinnacle Campus since 2014. Prior to ACC, Jim held multiple positions at the University of Texas at San Antonio, including advisor specialist and financial aid officer. Jim also served as a civilian contract specialist for the U.S. Air Force. He served four years active duty in the U.S. Army. Jim earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from the University of the Incarnate Word and a master’s degree in adult and higher education administration from UTSA.

Roxane Royalty is assistant dean of student services at the Elgin Campus. Roxane joined ACC in 2009 as a counselor and associate professor. Prior to joining ACC, Roxane was a therapist with Lone Star Circle of Care and a counselor and instructor at Alamo Colleges. Roxane has taught in the student development departments at ACC and Alamo Colleges. She holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from UTSA, and master’s degrees in counseling and in computer resources and information management from Webster University. She currently is pursuing a doctorate in Higher Education Administration from Texas Tech University.

Mervin James Jones is assistant dean of student services Eastview Campus. Mervin joined ACC in 2008 as a counselor and assistant professor at Riverside and Round Rock Campuses. He also has taught classes for the Student Development Department. Prior to ACC Mervin served in the U.S. Army for 23 years. He has initiated multiple veteran’s-related initiatives at ACC, including the Veterans Advisory Committee and the “From Humvee to ACC” event. Mervin earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Columbia University and a master’s degree in clinical counseling from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor.

Wellness counselors

The following wellness counselors will be a central point of contact for campus CARES (Campus Assessment, Response, Evaluation and Support) teams. Among other things, they will provide violence risk and threat assessments and consult with faculty and staff on CARES cases.

Wellness counselors will report to Executive Dean of Counseling Sylvia Galvan Gonzalez, MS, LPC-S, NCC. They will be based at Elgin Campus and will travel to other campuses according to student needs. The district wellness counselors are:

Mary Forrest-Wright, MA, LPC-S, LMFT-S: Since joining ACC in 2015 Mary has been a counselor at Eastview Campus and an adjunct professor of psychology and student development. Before ACC Mary worked for 20 years in the mental health field supporting individuals, couples, and families. She also served active-duty soldiers and their families with the Department of Defense and the Veteran’s Healthcare Administration. Mary holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology/sociology from Stephen F. Austin State University and a master’s degree in counseling/marriage and family therapy from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio.

Adam Lenker, MA, LPC: Adam joined ACC in 2014 and is an assistant professor and counselor with clinical experience in community and residential settings serving diverse populations. He has extensive experience providing counseling in supportive housing and working with those experiencing homelessness. He has worked on a contract basis with various Austin non-profits. Adam earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Texas A&M University. He completed his master’s degree in counseling from St. Edward’s University.

Julie Reck, MA, LPC-S: Julie has more than 12 years of counseling experience working in school settings with children, teens, and adults. She joined ACC in 2009 as a support center specialist at South Austin Campus assisting first-time-in-college and single parents transitioning to college life. Prior to ACC, Julie worked with Communities in Schools, assisting teens and families living in public housing. She works with interns seeking licensure as professional counselor interns and also teaches in the Student Development Department. Julie graduated from St. Edward’s University with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s degree in counseling.

Patricia Sanchez, MA, LPC, LCDC: Patricia joined ACC in 2013 as a counselor and assistant professor at Elgin Campus. Before joining ACC she worked at a university counseling center providing counseling, wellness workshops, and outreach to first generation college students. Patricia also worked at nonprofit community agencies providing individual and group substance abuse treatment services to bilingual clients. Patricia holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s degree in counseling psychology from Texas A&M International University.

Howard Sharp, MS, LPC: Howard joined ACC as a counselor and assistant professor at Round Rock Campus in 2013. He was a part-time counselor at several ACC campuses before his full-time appointment. Howard has 16 years of post-graduate counseling experience. He has served a diversity of clients in various settings. Howard holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Trinity University, a bachelor’s degree from UT-Austin, and a master’s degree in counseling from San Francisco State University.

Andrew Silver, MA, LPC. LCDC: Andrew joined ACC as a counselor and assistant professor in October 2014. Prior to ACC he provided short- and long-term counseling to people suffering from addiction, depression, bereavement and anxiety. He also worked with individuals and families in the county judicial system. Andrew earned a bachelor’s of music education degree at Northwestern State University and holds a master’s in music performance and a master’s degree in professional counseling from Texas State University.

Janie Wang, MA, LPC: Janie joined ACC in 2009 as a part-time counselor at Cypress Creek Campus and became a full-time counselor at Riverside Campus in 2010. Janie is trained in mental health assessment, individual and group counseling, suicide assessment and prevention, drug and alcohol counseling, disaster and trauma relief, and human trafficking aftercare. She earned a bachelor’s degree at UT-Austin majoring in Plan II, English and psychology, and a master’s degree at The Ohio State University in community counseling.

One final note: The position of dean of student services for Highland Campus will be reposted this week.

It’s been a busy semester, but we’re making steady progress. Thank you for your ongoing commitment and support.


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