ADVANCE Success Coaches support students who enrolled through the ADVANCE program, a NOVA/Mason Partnership. SuccessCoaching is different from academic advising as it provides multiple layers of holistic support for students pursuing higher education. ADVANCE Success Coaches guide and encourage the growth and development of each student’s knowledge, skills, attitudes, and beliefs about their ability succeed in higher education as well as within their chosen field. ADVANCE Success Coaches will discuss all aspects of a student’s life that impacts their academic performance, including but not limited to the following eight focus areas:
Commitment to graduation
Health & support
The highly trained ADVANCE Success Coaches will meet with students to discuss, in depth, these eight focus areas and how they are influencing their student experience at Mason. Success Coaches will work closely with campus resources, Academic Advisors, and the student directly to develop success plans to enhance and improve a student’s performance and confidence in each of these eight focus areas.
What we do:
Our professional Success Coaches are here to provide one-on-one support and guidance to ADVANCE students in a variety of focus areas. Improving a student’s experience in school can have lifelong impacts on the student, their family, their community, and society at large.
Success Coaches provide resources, support, guidance, and critical problem-solving discussions to provide a seamless transition from NOVA to Mason encouraging students to achieve their academic and professional goals. With the support and guidance of their assigned Success Coach, students can define what “success” means for them.
Our Success Coaches
Amira Aly (she/her/hers), ADVANCE Success Coach – Annandale campus
Amira has 10+ years’ experience working in higher education both internationally and in the US. Amira worked with diverse student populations particularly international students and non-native English speakers. Before joining ADVANCE, Amira worked at NOVA’s Annandale campus as an Academic Advisor. Amira is originally from Cairo, Egypt and her native language is Arabic. Amira holds a BA in Psychology from The American University in Cairo and is currently pursuing a Masters degree in Higher Education and Student Development at George Mason University.
“NOVA students have always inspired me. They are a very diverse student population, hardworking, goal oriented and resilient individuals. Every student has a different story, comes from a different place, has unique challenges and aspires to different dreams.”
Bradley Brooks (He/Him/His) is the Success Coach for NOVA’s Loudoun campus and is a true advocate of the student experience. Born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Bradley was first in his family to graduate from high school and go to college where he received his bachelor’s degree in Human Relations at the University of Oklahoma. Bradley felt largely underserved as a low-income first-generation student in higher education. This experience sparked his passion to pursue education as a career to create transformative environments for all students to achieve their wildest dreams and aspirations. As a McNair Scholar, Bradley received his master’s degree in Postsecondary Administration and Student Affairs from University of Southern California. Bradley has a varied background in higher education working in and outside of the classroom and previously worked at NOVA Alexandria in the Office of Student Life prior to this role.
“I love working with ADVANCE students because each student has a unique story and life experiences full of courage, creativity, and resilience. I enjoy helping our Nighthawk Patriots connect to their passions and personal well-being, develop a strong sense of self, and how to make the world a better place.”
Sabrey Stewart (she/her/hers), ADVANCE Success Coach – Alexandria Campus
Sabrey Stewart is the Success Coach for NOVA’s Alexandria and Medical Education campuses. After graduating from NOVA Loudoun in 2013, Sabrey transferred to the University of Virginia and earned her Bachelor’s of Arts degree in English. Afterwards, Sabrey served as a College Adviser with the Virginia College Advising Corps, helping underrepresented, first-generation, and low-income high school students achieve their post-secondary aspirations. Sabrey earned her Master of Education in College Student Personnel Administration from James Madison University in 2019.
“As a former NOVA student, I personally understand the trials that may arise when attempting to transfer to a four-year institution. I did not have a lot of guidance during my transfer process and, as a result, I wanted to ensure that other students would have a mentor to help them through such trials in the future. It’s exciting to be able to use a holistic perspective in order to gain a comprehensive look into a student’s goals and experiences. From there, I can help address their academic, professional, and personal needs in an effort to foster their growth and success.”
Sharon Kim (she/her/hers), ADVANCE Success Coach – Annandale Campus
Sharon Kim is the Success Coach for NOVA’s Annandale Campus. After graduating from NOVA, Sharon transferred to George Mason University and earned her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. She earned her Master of Education in Educational Psychology from George Mason University and completed additional graduate work in Community Agency Counseling at George Mason University as well. Prior to working as a Success Coach, Sharon worked as a Lead Advisor at George Mason University Korea. Also, Sharon worked as an advisor at Northern Virginia Community College. Sharon also taught student development courses and ESL courses at Northern Virginia Community College.
“As a former NOVA student and a transfer student at GMU, I realized how important it is to make positive connections with someone who can guide you through this process. Additionally, I am excited about my role as a Success Coach in a way that I can build long-term relationships with students, have a part in affecting the life of students by providing holistic support, and help them build resilience throughout their academic journey.”
Ashley Marshall-Lanier brings over fifteen years of experience in higher education to her new role as ADVANCE Success Coach. She has previously served in athletics administration for student-athletes, transfer admissions, and most recently as a transfer specialist for the College Records Office of Northern Virginia Community College. Her responsibilities included evaluation of domestic and international credit, credit for prior learning, and assistance with course substitutions and degree auditing. She is an advocate for student success and firmly believes in the integral part that community college education plays in successfully matriculating students to four year institutions, and eventually graduating from those institutions with Bachelor’s degrees.
Destiny is the Success Coach on the NOVA Manassas and Woodbridge campuses. She is an alumna of George Mason University who has received a B.A. in Communication and M.A. in Higher Education. Previously she has worked with Mason’s co-curricular program the Patriot Experience as a graduate assistant. She also has worked in Mason’s Alumni Relations Office as the Young Alumni and Student Programs Assistant. Destiny has a passion for helping students reach their highest potential and succeed in and out of the classroom.
“When I graduated from high school in 2012 and started my career at Mason my mind was working a thousand miles per hour with questions. Through my experience at Mason, I was able to get a lot of those questions answered with the help of my advisors and mentors. I am excited to be able to be a support system for ADVANCE students on their journey and be a person that they can depend on.”
Krystal Wiley (she/her/hers), Assistant Director for ADVANCE
Krystal brings 11 years of experience in higher education to her new role. She has previously served in various departments such as Admission, Financial Aid and Academic Advising. She has worked for a few intuitions such as The Art Institute, North Carolina A&T State University and East Carolina University, all located in North Carolina. She has 5 years’ experience in advising and coaching students in various majors and different programs of study. A few of her responsibilities included working with transfer students from the community colleges, reviewing transcript evaluations and heading summer orientations for all incoming students. She has a passion for student success and believes this can be achieved by providing students with the tools to be a confident learner, knowing there is a community who is committed to help them reach their goals.