LEEP Center More


A former basketball star and Hall of Famer. An award-winning poet. A nationally-recognized career services office. A distinguished community engagement office. An internationally-recognized study abroad office. A top-ranked innovation and entrepreneurship program. Award-winning instructors and advisors. Experts in academic advising and student development. Dedicated professionals with advanced degrees and years of experience. We are the LEEP Center.

Read below for more information on our talented and accomplished staff.

Who is my LEEP Center adviser?

LEEP Center Advisers


Michelle Bata - LEEP Center - Clark UniversityMichelle Bata
Associate Dean and Director of the LEEP Center

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As the inaugural director of the LEEP Center—home to academic advising, career services, community engagement, study abroad, and the writing center—Michelle is responsible for efforts to engage students in opportunities outside of the classroom as well as preparing them for life after Clark.

Prior to joining the Clark community, Michelle was assistant dean and director of undergraduate research and a member of the sociology faculty at Fordham University. Michelle's scholarly interests include the impact of advising and mentorship on student professional outcomes, and how engagement in experiential opportunities impacts student learning.

Michelle has been selected to participate in NACE's Leadership Advancement Program for 2015-6. She received the Excellence in Advising award from NACADA Region 1 in 2014. Michelle received both her M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Arizona. She received her A.B. in sociology and Hispanic studies from Boston College.


Jessica Bane Robert - LEEP Center - Clark UniversityJessica Bane Robert
Assistant Director of the Writing Center and Writing Program
508 793-7392

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Jessica has taught for the English and Interdisciplinary departments, as well as for the Higgins School of Humanities since 2007. She currently is the Acting Director of the Writing Center and a LEEP Center adviser. Some of Professor Robert's course offerings include Expository Writing, Creative Writing, Sense of Place: Writings of Place and Nature, and Mindful Choices.

Her poems and essays have appeared in numerous journals and have won prizes such as the Rita Dove International Poetry Prize and the International Merit Award from the Atlanta Review. Her first chap book of poems, Scarred Seasons, was published in 2009 by Finishing Line Press and was nominated for a Mass Book Award and a Pen New England Literary Award.

Bane Robert owns the Barred Owl Retreat: A Center for Writing and Learning in Leicester, MA that provides individual and group retreats for artists, educators, and students.

As the Acting Director of the Writing Center and a member of the LEEP Center Staff, Professor Bane Robert specializes in helping students craft personal statements for graduate school and competitive proposals for grants and fellowships.


Vickie Cox-Lanyon - LEEP Center - Clark UniversityVickie Cox-Lanyon
Assistant Director of the LEEP Center and Director of Career Services

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Vickie oversees the career services office including the provision of individual career counseling, coordination of workshops and online resources, and collection and dissemination of career outcome data. As assistant director of the LEEP Center, she also assists with LEEP Center programming and activities, helping to coordinate efforts across the offices of the center.

Vickie provides career and graduate school advising to students and alumni throughout their career development process. She also serves as a LEEP Center adviser to students majoring in Psychology.

Vickie has been in the field of career services since 1997 and is a member of the National Career Development Association, the National Association of Colleges and Employers, and the Liberal Arts Career Network, through which she participates in annual professional development activities. She holds an MS in Psychology from the University of Rhode Island and a BA in Psychology from Trinity College in Hartford, CT.


Micki Davis
Director of Community Engagement and Volunteering

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Micki is responsible for the overall management of the Community Engagement Office and its goals of building a campus culture that supports community engagement and socially responsible global citizenship, both inside and outside of the curriculum. Micki works with faculty to design and implement community-based learning courses and to promote community engagement in the curriculum. Micki also oversees the Local Knowledge repository for community-based research. Micki is also the primary LEEP Center administrator for developing and supporting partnerships with nonprofit organizations in Worcester. She also serves as a LEEP Center adviser to students that have declared a major or minor in IDCE, Sociology, Women's and Gender Studies, and Education.

Micki received her M.P.A degree from Clark University and graduated from Hollins University in Roanoke, VA with a B.A. in history. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in Education with a concentration in Organizational Leadership. Micki currently serves as President-Elect of the Board of Directors at the YWCA of Central Massachusetts and recently joined the Steering Committee for the Worcester Women's History Project. Prior to coming to Clark, Micki served for three years as an AmeriCorps*VISTA with Massachusetts Campus Compact.

Micki is an Associate Member of the AAC&U and the Council on Undergraduate Research.


Ben Gardner - LEEP Center - Clark UniversityBen Gardner
Assistant Director of Community Engagement and Volunteering

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Ben works closely with students who are involved in service outside of the classroom. In this capacity, he manages Clark’s community work-study program, serves as adviser for service-oriented student groups, oversees the Community Engagement Office’s alternative spring break programming, and develops service-leadership programming. Ben also serves as a LEEP Center adviser to students from Geography, Global Environmental Studies, and the Environmental Science tracks.

Ben holds his M.S. and B.A. in Environmental Science & Policy from Clark University.


Brian Hanna - LEEP Center - Clark UniversityBrian Hanna
Assistant Director of Career Services

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Brian manages Clark's employer relations and on-campus recruiting efforts. In addition, he advises students on all aspects of career development and serves as liaison to the Athletics Department. He is a member of the National Association of Colleges and Employers, the Eastern Association of Colleges and Employers, the Worcester Chamber of Commerce Career Services Committee, and the New England Employer Relations Committee.

Brian holds a B.A. degree in Communication and Culture from Clark University.



Alissa Kramer - LEEP Center - Clark UniversityAlissa Kramer
Director of Study Abroad and Away Programs

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As Director of Study Abroad, Alissa is responsible for managing the operations for Clark’s study abroad and study away programs. She provides holistic support to students throughout the pre-departure, on-site and the re–entry phase of their experience.

Prior to joining Clark, Alissa served as Resident Director for the Boston University Brussels Internship Program and Program Manager for BU programs in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, North and South America.

Alissa has her MA in Intercultural Relations and International Higher Education from Lesley University and her double BA in Social Thought and Political Economy and Germanic Languages and Literatures from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She studied abroad at the Eberhard Karls Universität in Tübingen, Germany, at El Paraiso Spanish School in Bocas del Toro, Panama and in Montanita, Ecuador and speaks German (and some Spanish). She has presented at international education conferences around the globe on student learning outcomes and students with disabilities in study abroad and is a member of NAFSA, FORUM and CIEE international education organizations.

Kristina Nguyen
Associate Director of Career Services
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Kristina is responsible for managing the Academic Internship Program as well as general career exploration and career development efforts. She provides holistic student support and career counseling to students throughout their entire career development process, identifying and aligning their academic and co-curricular interests while preparing them to be responsible, engaged and professional members of our global society.

Prior to joining the Career Advising team, Kristina was a talent acquisition executive who specialized in the recruitment and placement of qualified professionals, ranging from entry-level to executive-level candidates, for corporate organizations throughout New England. With an extensive knowledge of the corporate hiring process and a strong understanding of careers across a myriad of industries, Kristina prepares students for the post-college transition and provides them with a better insight into the professional workforce so that they can make well-informed decisions regarding their career interests.

Kristina is a member of the National Career Development Association, and has been involved with local nonprofit organizations that work with first generation low income high school students, such as Let’s Get Ready and the Bruce Wells Upward Bound programs. In regards to Kristina’s relationship with Clark, she has come full circle: she started out as a Youth Research Assistant for Clark while still in high school, attended Clark on a full scholarship awarded by the Goddard Scholars Program at South High Community School, graduated from Clark with a BA in International Development and Social Change, and is currently the Associate Director of Career Services at Clark University.


Jennifer Plante
Director of the Writing Center and Writing Program

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Jennifer has been at Clark full time since 2007, when she became the Director of the Writing Center and Writing Program. During her time at Clark, Jennifer has taught a variety of courses, including Expository Writing, Introduction to Literature, Writing: The Beats, Difficult Dialogue courses for the Higgins School of Humanities, and she has taught Continuing Education courses in both literature and film.

Jennifer comes to this position with a lengthy history in the Worcester area. She graduated from Worcester Polytechnic Institute with a degree in Humanities; after working as a technical writer in the area, Jennifer decided to pursue a Master's degree in English from Clark University. In 2016 she was selected as one of the 10 Emerging Leaders for 2016-18 in the NACADA Emerging Leaders program.


Evette Walters - LEEP Center - Clark UniversityEvette Walters
Assistant Director, Academic Advising

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She is responsible for providing academic support to students and also serves as a LEEP Center adviser.

Evette received her bachelor's degree in social services and her M.P.A. from Clark University.


Amy Whitney - LEEP Center - Clark UniversityAmy Whitney
Director of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program

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Amy is the Director of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program at Clark University. As Director, she is responsible for providing advising undergraduates interested in entrepreneurship courses, mentoring students working on business ideas, offering teaching guidance and classroom assistance to part-time entrepreneurship program faculty, managing overall daily department and budget operations, co-advising two campus-based student-run ventures, creating collaborations and partnerships with internal and external departments and agencies, and managing a campus-wide Big Idea challenge. Amy is also a LEEP Center adviser for students who have declared a major in management or a minor in entrepreneurship or management.

Prior to Clark, Amy spent 11 years working for Mothers Against Drunk Driving working with community coalitions on evidence-based prevention strategies, public policy advocacy, enforcement training and planning statewide projects aimed at reducing underage drinking.

Amy holds a MBA and a BA from Clark University and is currently pursuing an Ed.D. at Northeastern University with a concentration in Organizational Leadership. Amy's dissertation thesis research is focused on creative collaboration and problem solving of college students and their transition and implementation of these skills in organizational settings. Her academic interests include entrepreneurship, creativity, problem solving, cultures of innovation, inquiry-based learning, and high-impact practice.

Evan Wilson
Associate Director of Study Abroad

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Evan is responsible for supporting students through the study abroad process including advising, application completion, and supporting students during pre-departure, on-site, and when returned to campus. As a LEEP Center adviser, Evan is also responsible for helping students identify a major of study and active learning opportunities outside the classroom.

Prior to joining Clark, Evan was involved in program coordination and student advising in educational programs and study abroad. Evan served as the Travel Seminar and Internship Coordinator at the Center for Global Education and Experience program in Windhoek, Namibia. Most recently, Evan coordinated programs for a public health organization involving youth in health promotion and served as a classroom teacher in public elementary schools.

Evan holds a B.A. in International Development and Social Change and a M.A. in Community Development and Planning from Clark University, as well as a M.Ed. from the University of Massachusetts Boston.

LEEP Center Staff

Andrea Tymeson
Administrative Assistant for the LEEP Center


Andrea is the office manager for the LEEP Center. In this role, she oversees the general operation of the Center and supervises the work-study students. She also provides support and assistance for all LEEP Center events.

Previously, she worked as a desktop publishing technician for 13 years, working on several weekly magazines. She also worked as the office manager for Atlantic Union College’s Thayer Performing Arts Center and the Music Department.

She holds an office management degree from Burdett School in Boston.