Dana was born in Brooklyn, New York and spent her childhood years in big cities including Chicago and Miami. She completed her undergraduate degrees in journalism and communications at Indiana University Bloomington. Through campus involvement, she found her passion for student development and completed her masters in college student affairs and leadership at Loyola University Chicago. She came to Grand Rapids in the late 90s to serve as the director of student activities at Aquinas College.
A lifelong learner, she continued her education at Western Michigan University earning a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership in 2011. Most recently, she was a career counselor and director of academic advising at another local institution. She teaches a Career Development class designed for upper-class students and also advises both students and alumni on resumes, cover letter writing, job search strategies, interviewing skills, and other areas related to career exploration and development. Dana also works with individual employers and a number of college consortiums, to develop recruitment strategies and to help broaden the scope of employment opportunities for Aquinas students. She is an active member of the advising communities in the National Association of Academic Advising and also attends NACE and AHRM events to continuous learn how to better serve AQ students.
Dana is thrilled to return “home” to Aquinas College in the Advantage Center. She and her partner, Michael, have three active boys. One of them is an AQ Saint!
Brigid hails from the East Side of Michigan but fell in love with Grand Rapids while attending Aquinas College. A psychology major and studio art minor, Brigid completed internships with the Aquinas Admissions Office and participated in the Chicago Semester, teaching art classes at St. Agatha and shadowing an art therapist at a group home for boys. After graduating, she worked in Admissions, recruiting future Saints from Detroit and Grand Rapids public schools. The lifelong learning bug, a dislike of Michigan winters, and love of a fellow AQ alum and Marine led her to pursue a Masters Degree in Higher Education Leadership at the University of San Diego. She finished her time in sunny southern California as the Development Officer for the High Tech High Foundation, supporting a group of revolutionary charter schools that served a diverse student population. The Pure Michigan commercials worked, however, and she and husband Jeremy Chesla ’01 came back home to Michigan, and Aquinas, when she accepted the position of Alumni Director. After serving for 9 years, Brigid transitioned to the student side of the “house” and now serves as the Associate Director of Career Services and Internship Director. She lives across the street from Aquinas (she can see inside Albertus from her front porch) with her two boys, Emmett and Leo, and firefighting husband.
Morgan is from Grand Rapids, Michigan graduating from Forest Hills Central High School. She attended Eastern Michigan University where she received a degree in communications and electronic media. In addition, Morgan was a distance runner on the Eastern Women’s cross country and track team earning a MAC conference title.
Morgan’s career started in admissions in Indianapolis, Indiana recruiting undergraduate and graduate nursing students. A few years later she met her now fiancé and moved back to Grand Rapids. She continued her career in admissions recruiting students looking to pursue their Doctor of Physical Therapy degree, along with graduate and undergraduate students. During this time, she completed her Master of Management degree at Davenport University.
Her love for working with undergraduate students provided the opportunity to work at Aquinas College recruiting students from across the country. Are you a future Saint? If you are interested in learning more about career exploration for incoming students, please contact the Admissions Office to schedule a visit at https://www.aquinas.edu/admissions/undergraduate/visits-directions.
Interim Career Coach
Joe grew up in West Michigan, hailing from the town of Greenville. After graduating from Michigan State University with a degree in History in 2012, he spent 7 years coaching college basketball, both men’s and women’s, at various levels in Michigan. During that time, working with student-athletes off the court helped foster his interest in higher education and student affairs. This led to him attend Grand Valley State University to study in the College Student Affairs Leadership program, from which he graduated in 2019. Joe is currently serving as the Interim Career Coach and has worked at the Advantage Center in a variety of roles since May 2018. This includes time spent as a Graduate Intern, working with the Study Away Office, and leading the Spring 2019 Digital Badge Program. Joe also works with students on resume and cover letter development and revisions. Outside of work and athletics, Joe is an avid movie watcher and enjoys taking his dog Bo for walks with his wife Meghan, who is an Assistant Professor of Athletic Training at Grand Valley State University.
Specialities and InterestsAcademic and Career Support for First and Second Year Students
Linda teaches CD 100: Career Exploration and Self-Awareness for first and second year students every semester. She also teaches CD 200, a Career Development Course designed for continuing education students. Linda provides career counseling along with training and support for staff and adjunct faculty. Linda earned a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from the University of Michigan, a Master’s degree in Special Education from Eastern Michigan University, and completed a Master’s program in Guidance and Counseling from Michigan State University. In addition, she earned a Doctoral Degree in Educational Leadership from Western Michigan University. Prior to coming to Aquinas, Linda worked for the public schools as a teacher, counselor, and curriculum consultant and in higher education (admissions/affirmative action). She also worked for the education association as a professional development/human rights consultant and UniServ Director. In her free time, she is an avid dancer!