Center for Student Success

What We Do

The Center for Student Success is a one-stop hub of resources for first-year students, inclusive of academic and career advising, academic achievement resources and tutoring, mentoring and other first-year transition programs.

Our dedicated team seeks to initiate and maintain an on-going relationship with students focused on achieving success at St. John’s University both inside and outside of the classroom.

  • Email

    [email protected]
  • Office Location

    St. Augustine Hall (University Library), Room 104
  • Phone

  • Office Hours

    Monday – Thursday 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., Friday 8:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. *Note the university is closed on Fridays 5/31 through 8/2

Whether you are a future or current first-year student, a parent, family member or supporter, or a guidance counselor, we are excited that you wish to learn more about the Center for Student Success and hope you enjoy viewing our site. 

Female student mover carrying Macy bags

Academic Advising

The Center for Student Success provides first-year students with personalized academic planning and advisement, including course registration.

St. Augustine Hall

First-Year Transition Programs

We aim to provide first-year students opportunities for mentoring, community-building and co-curricular opportunities for student learning and engagement​

Three law students studying in library

Academic Achievement

To ensure a student's achievement in the classroom we provide peer tutoring and other resources to help students hone their academic skills​

Male student sitting with female student smiling with labtop

Case Management

Our Case Management team helps students navigate resources on- and off-campus. We do this by:
Engaging in crisis prevention and intervention 
Responding to concerns from the campus community about students in distress 
Assisting students in identifying options to address challenges and barriers to success 
Promoting growth in self-advocacy while connecting students to campus and community resources
Providing opportunities for students to develop critical thinking skills 

Male student walking across campus during Orientation

Major Exploration

Students are encouraged to connect for support and guidance for exploration of major options and foundation of career readiness​

Meet the Team

Joni O'Hagan 
Executive Director of the Center for Student Success

First-Year Academic Advising

Dr. Charles C. Pizzo
Director, First-Year Academic Advising 

Jennifer L. Newsom
Associate Director, First-Year Academic Advising

Alison Celaya
Associate Director, First-Year Academic Advising

Anna Donnelly
Associate Director, First-Year Academic Advising / Director of Student Support Services, Division of Special and Opportunity Programs

Gerri Vopelak
PT Advisor, First-Year Academic Advising

David Duryea
Assistant Director, First-Year Academic Advising

Udeshika Abeysena
Assistant Director, First-Year Academic Advising

David Strauss
Assistant Director, First-Year Academic Advising

Sean Dantzler
Assistant Director, First-Year Academic Advising

Thomas Boehrer
Assistant Director, First-Year Academic Advising & Student Support Services Advisor

First-Year Programs

Sarah Braden
Director of First-Year Programs 

Gerard Fabian Cajas
Associate Director, First-Year Programs

Stephanie Ramsey
Assistant Director, First-Year Programs

Academic Achievement

Alexandra Marquez
Director of Academic Achievement

Melissa Tirelli 
Assistant Director, Academic Achievement

Mario Cornejo
Assistant Director, Academic Achievement

Linda Dersch
PT Office Assistant 

First-Year Career Advising

Bernice Swinton
Assistant Director, First-Year Career Advising

Case Management

Princess Britta Gay-Henderson
Case Manager

Department Support

Betzaida Gonzalez
Support Staff

Amanda Rose
Support Staff

Rosalba Basso
Support Staff