Dean of Graduate Studies

Karin Elliott Brown
Karin Elliott Brown, PhD
Associate Vice President and Dean of Graduate Studies

Dr. Karin Elliott Brown currently serves as the Dean of Graduate Studies. Prior to this appointment she served as the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies and Research for three years, Director of the School of Social Work at Cal State LA for five years, Director of the BA in Social Work program for six years, and as a faculty member in the School of Social Work for 15 years. She has over 25 years of experience within the field of social work as an educator and practitioner. Her practice experience has been in public child welfare and medical social work. 

Read Dr. Brown's welcome letter >

Professional Staff

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Andrew Chavez, M.A.
WSCUC (WASC) Staff Support

Andrew is a recent M.A. graduate from Cal State LA’s Department of Psychology, where he is currently an adjunct professor. He examines issues in multicultural psychology from social and counseling psychology perspectives and his research focuses on the relationships between social identities, discrimination, and academic outcomes among college students. He has served multiple roles in the Office of Graduate Studies since March 2015. Currently, he provides administrative support to the different committees and teams who are working on WSCUC accreditation, program review, and assessment.

Jessica Dennis
Jessica Dennis, PhD
Director of Assessment

Dr. Dennis has been a professor at Cal State LA since 2005, where she was also a post-doctoral researcher and adjunct faculty from 2003 to 2005. Her research focuses on development in emerging adulthood with an emphasis on cross-cultural issues in family and peer relationships and the ways in which these relationships impact academic and psychosocial outcomes.

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Andrea Gutierrez, MFA
Coordinator, Graduate Resource Center

Andrea is a seasoned higher education professional and college instructor. She has worked with undergraduates and graduates at colleges and universities throughout California, including the Claremont Colleges, UC Berkeley, UCLA, UC Riverside, and now Cal State LA. She earned a B.A. in German Studies at Scripps College in Claremont and an MFA in Creative Writing at UC Riverside. In her spare time, she plays soccer and softball, bikes, gardens, takes photos, and writes essays, poems, and plays.

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Veronica Ramirez, B.S.
Office Manager

Veronica has worked at all levels of education since 2000, having worked at USC, USC Head Start, Long Beach Day Nursery, and California State Preschool Program before coming to Cal State LA. She has a bachelor's degree in Human Services and Management from the University of Phoenix, and is currently researching potential master's degree programs. She is a parent advocate and enjoys spending time with her daughters.

Graduate Student Assistants Summer 2018

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Dina Abou Salem
Graduate Student Assistant & M.A. candidate, Communication Studies

Dina is a graduate student at Cal State LA specializing in digital and data driven journalism. She brings to the Office of Graduate Studies her passion for communications and multimedia journalism. Not only was she university web editor for the American University of Beirut, she was also a working journalist during her stay in Los Angeles. Most recently, she worked at ABC News where she covered and produced breaking news and features for a number of ABC News platforms including Good Morning America, World News with David Muir, 2020, and Nightline. Dina received her bachelors and masters of arts in middle eastern history at the American University of Beirut. With her second masters in Television, Film, and Media Studies from California State University in Los Angeles underway, she is focusing her research and study on digital and data driven journalism.


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Angela Gee, M.A.
Graduate Assistant

Angela ("Angie") is a non-traditional graduate student in the field of Sociology. She returned to school after a 30-year hiatus and received her B.A. in Sociology with an emphasis in Inequality and Diversity and a minor in Philosophy from Cal State LA in the spring of 2014. Her research interests center around equality and equity for all and human rights issues. Her thesis will be based loosely on the “HeForShe” campaign that focuses on men’s perspective of equality and equity for women. Angela is uncertain if a PhD is in her future. Her other interests and hobbies include animal rights, reading, and writing.

Writing Consultants, Summer 2018

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Adam Kendall
Writing Consultant & M.A. candidate, History

Adam Kendall is a graduate student in History, specializing in American and World History. For over a twenty years he has been a keen student of fraternal societies, and has published widely on the subject in academic journals such as the European Journal of American Culture. He has also lectured at symposia throughout the U.S., Canada, and western Europe. For ten years prior to relocating to Los Angeles from San Francisco, he was the director of a museum specializing in mid-19th to 20th century California history as told through the lens of American fraternal orders. In addition, fascinated by his own family’s long history, his interest in California extends to the study of Californio and other Hispaño societies of the western U.S.­

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Marcel Young
Writing Consultant & M.A. candidate, Anthropology

Marcel Young is a graduate student in Anthropology specializing in Archaeology. He attended California State University, Long Beach, earning a B.A. in Anthropology with a minor in Native American Cultures. A few of his scholarly pursuits include aboriginal shell and lithic technologic industries, complex social organization in ancient societies, and participating in the California Coastal and Island Research Program. Closely working with local Indigenous groups in legal repatriation cases, Marcel has advocated on their behalf at professional conferences where he has presented about ethics and other related issues surrounding the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act. As a wilderness enthusiast and backpacker who enjoys adventures into National Forests and Parks, Marcel is planning his next excursion.

Thesis Reviewers Summer 2018

Christine Pallette
Thesis Reviewer & Postbac Student, Communication Disorders
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Natalie Vindivich
Thesis Reviewer & M.A. candidate, Anthropology

Natalie is a third-year graduate student in the Anthropology department. She looks at cultures from a historical and sociocultural point of view and helps to interpret their stories in a way that might be beneficial to the world today. Her current research involves examining her time spent collecting data in Alaska and she aims to eventually pursue a PhD. Natalie received her B.A. from Mercyhurst University in Erie, Pennsylvania, in English Literature in 2008, where she worked as a writing center consultant. In addition to her work at Cal State LA, she freelances as a member of the Screen Actors Guild, is an AirBnB host, and enjoys playing guitar and banjo.  

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Claudia Camacho-Trejo
Thesis Reviewer & M.A. candidate, Anthropology

Claudia was born in Mexico City and moved to California in 2001. She is a third-year graduate student in Anthropology, with a focus on Mesoamerican Archaeology. She received her Associate of Arts degree in Social and Behavioral Sciences from East Los Angeles Community College and her B.A. in Anthropology with a minor in Mesoamerican studies from Cal State LA. As a graduate student, Claudia has had the opportunity to volunteer and work in an interdisciplinary setting allowing her to work in conservation and on archaeological projects in Mexico and California. She is currently working on her master's thesis proposal research specializing in the ancient stone tool and its ritual use and context in the Mexica precinct of Tenochtitlan, Templo Mayor. In the next upcoming year, Claudia wishes to complete her theses and apply to a PhD program with a focus in Archaeology. In her spare time, she enjoys visiting museums, reading, knapping stones, and traveling.

Kelly Ebeling
Thesis Reviewer & M.A. candidate, Psychology

Kelly Ebeling is a first-year graduate student studying Psychology at California State University, Los Angeles, where she also earned her B.A. in Psychology.  Her research focuses primarily on sexual risk behaviors, personality, and health disparities among HIV+ individuals. In addition to being a thesis reviewer, she is also the coordinator of the Health Psychology Laboratory. Kelly plans to go on to obtain a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and build a career for herself as a clinician, a researcher, and a professor. She also desires to one day take an active role in the development of mental health policy. In her spare time, she enjoys reading novels and short stories, jogging, going for long car rides, and listening to stand up comedy.

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Wil Schimmeyer
Thesis Reviewer & M.M. candidate, Music
Nikita Shendkar
Thesis Reviewer & M.S. candidate, Information Systems