STAR (STudent Achievement & Retention)

Emerging Scholars Program

Interested? Call, email or see an Advisor in the Star Center to Apply

CONTACT
College Center
Room 266
(970) 339-6607

Michael Gulliksen
michael.gulliksen@aims.edu
(970) 339-6607

Se habla Español!
Para asistencia con cualquier pregunta que pueda tener contacte a Iván Díaz.

Iván Díaz
ivan.diaz@aims.edu
(970) 339-6609


Meet Your Emerging Scholars Advisors

Emerging Scholars Program:

Sera Chalk

I was born and raised in Colorado, grew up with my younger sister and brother on a little farm in Loveland and was homeschooled K-12 grade. Doctors told my parents that they would never be able to have children. Not only were the doctor’s proven wrong once, but I paved the way for the doctors to be proven wrong twice more. My full name is Seraiah: Hebrew for “God will prevail.” After finishing my bachelor’s degree in nursing at UNC, I found myself following my heart to continue working at Aims in higher education. While it was an unexpected turn in my career path, it remains a blessing to be able to use my nursing knowledge in my advising role. One of the many things I enjoy about my time here at Aims is having experienced Aims’ positive student focus both as a student, and in my current advisor role.

Janet Chase

I came to Aims to pursue a college degree after having worked in the medical field for about 100 years. I did not see myself as college material nor did I believe I would be successful. To my great surprise, I graduated with an Associate’s of Arts degree from Aims in 2006. I credit the Aims’ staff, faculty, and Student Life for my successful completion of a college degree. Although I went on to earn a degree in Mortuary Science, I continued to be drawn back to Aims. I went on to UNC where I earned a Bachelor’s in Human Services and a Master’s in Higher Education Student Affairs Leadership so I could return to Aims as an advisor. I now have the privilege of serving Aims’ students pursuing their own educational goals. I firmly believe that Graduation Day from Aims should be declared a National Holiday so that students, staff, and faculty may celebrate the day in the spirit which it so richly deserves!

Iván Díaz
Advisor, Student Success Center
(970) 339-6609
ivan.diaz@aims.edu

When I’m not advising, I am a professional photographer where I’ve had the opportunity to photograph artists such as, Sugar Ray, Smash Mouth, WAR, and Cheech and Chong. I am a collector of vintage items, and I have a closet full of basketball sneakers that are as old as some of my advisees. When I am not busy with my other jobs my hobbies include coaching high school boys basketball, being outdoors, and spending time with my partner and our three amazing children.

I am the first in my immediate family to graduate from college and the first to receive a Master’s degree. I get the most satisfaction in my Advisor role by building relationships and trust with my students. I enjoy providing the tools, resources and support for them to grow. At the end of the day my greatest enjoyment as an advisor, here at Aims, is watching my students obtain their degree.

Marie Gallegos

I grew up in a small community in Colorado’s San Luis Valley. My elementary and middle school years were in a one building school that housed grades 1 through 12. As a non-traditional student and a single mother of two, I earned a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s degree in Community Counseling at Adams State University. Before coming to Aims Community College I worked at Adams State University as a student employee for 4 years. After completing a Master’s degree I was instrumental in establishing the first Advising Center at Adams State University as an academic advisor for 12 years. My most challenging experience was being in the Peace Corps for two and a half years stationed in Ecuador. It was the first time I traveled and lived in a different country without my family. The experience taught me that if I had not challenged my comfort zone I would have missed an opportunity of a lifetime.

Advising is very important in a student’s educational success. As an undergraduate student I basically advised myself, luckily, I was able to complete my degree without any problems (which does not always workout. Meeting regularly with an advisor helps students navigate through the confusion and anxiety of being in college. Students are the masters of their education and advisors can be a central resource.

For me the greatest satisfaction in my job is when I see the confidence and growth students achieve.

Michael Gulliksen

Before moving to Colorado, I had never lived far from the beach. I grew up in Southern California and spent a couple years in Massachusetts. I love Colorado but miss the ocean and regret losing my ability to surf. I began to discover my love of education at Santa Monica College, my community college, and have had a soft spot for community colleges since. The desire to learn that was sparked there pushed me to explore the nooks and crannies of my incredibly diverse hometown, Los Angeles. I also spent extended periods of time in Eastern Europe and the Balkans. I’ve taken shorter trips around North America and Africa as well. I enjoy working with our students at Aims and hope to be a part of helping students explore their interests and develop a deeper love of learning.

Hollie Kopp

I grew up in Montana riding horses and rounding up cattle on my friend’s ranch. My only semi-famous relative was a wild horse wrangler from the Dakota badlands. According to family lore, it is highly likely not all those were really “wild” horses he was wrangling. While I have deep roots in the west, I have traveled to the Middle East and West Africa and I collect masks from all over the world. One of the highlights of my college career was living in a Kibbutz (like a commune) and working on an Archaeology site in Israel. I credit my educational experience with opening my eyes to a much larger world and now one of my favorite things to do is learn about other cultures. One of the things Hollie enjoys about Aims Advising is the feeling of open and friendly exchange between students and staff.

Eileen McGaughey
Advisor, Senior
(970) 339-6508
eileen.mcgaughey@aims.edu

Educational/Professional Background: I graduated from the University of Denver with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sport Sciences & Physical Education.
I bring over 10 years’ experience in advising, career counseling, and case management within a Workforce Center.

Area of Specialty: As an advisor with Aims Community College, I bring an additional layer of “real life” workforce development education, including assisting students in taking their next steps in their program of study and enabling them to become successful in their academic life and life after school with achievement of their academic and career goals. I am able to provide information on Workforce Centers, navigation of their resources, and training and employment programs.

Personal Philosophy on Advising: As a career counselor, I ask students, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” or “What is your dream career?” Through the process of career development, the light bulb goes on and the “ah ha” moment happens when students realize what they want to be when they “grow up.” Then, with defined career goals, assisting with completing an educational plan, advising, mentoring and an employment plan, students complete their program of study and achieve their goals. It is so motivating and gratifying to see the fulfillment of students’ goals and attainment of their “dream careers”.

Trish Schier

I am a native of Colorado and have lived here most of my life. I have also lived in Texas, California and Missouri. I love to travel and have been to England, Ireland, Wales, Scotland, Canada, Mexico, Panama and many states in the US. One of my hobbies has been hot air ballooning. I have crewed for six flights at both high and low altitudes. My other interests include photography, scrapbooking, and bragging about my three Basset Hounds, two of which I acquired through my work with a local Basset Hound rescue. I truly love being an Emerging Scholars advisor and consider it a privilege to encourage my students toward their educational goals. I find the most satisfaction in watching my students become confident, capable and committed in their educational pursuits!

Kara Tripician
Advisor, Senior
(970) 339-3306
kara.tripician@aims.edu

Student Services
Loveland Campus
Loveland, CO 80537

Background: I graduated from the University of Northern Colorado in 2008 with a Master’s Degree in Clinical Counseling with an emphasis in Couples and Family Therapy. Before joining Aims, I had a private counseling practice serving couples, families and children in play therapy. I have also worked in K-12 education for five years. Prior to that, I earned two Bachelor’s degrees, one in Medical Technology and one in Microbiology, and I worked as a Medical Technologist and Microbiologist for 7 years.

Area of Specialty: I am an Admissions and Academic Advisor on the Loveland Campus. I look forward to meeting you!

Advising Philosophy: My advising philosophy is to partner with and empower students as they navigate their way toward their academic and career goals. I am committed to listening to the students, and providing support, information and tools the students need in order to take ownership of their journey and make informed choices.

Mary Tucker

I moved to Colorado in 1987. Before then I lived in New Mexico, Missouri, Illinois and Wisconsin. I started college at the College of DuPage, a community college, outside of Chicago. I transferred to Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville Illinois where I received my Bachelors in Sociology with a Social Work Emphasis and my Masters in Counselor Education.
Before coming to Aims Community College I worked at Southern Illinois University and the University of New Mexico.
I love to travel and have been to most of the continental United States, Mexico, Canada and Cambodia. I really enjoy the ocean.
I feel very fortunate, in that, I love my job. I love working with students as they gain confidence and pursue the career of their choice. I hope I have been a positive influence on their lives.