Meet Kofi Barko, Assistant Director of the Titan Success Center!
Kofi Barko lives by the philosophy “If you want to go fast, go alone but if you want to go far, go together”. He understands that success is a result of collective effort by all stakeholders. As a student affairs professional his number one goal is to help students go farther and excel in their academics, careers and personal lives. He helps students build a strong foundation by providing them with resources they need, connecting them to relevant personnel and motivating them to persevere.
He enjoys working with students of diverse backgrounds, viewpoints and experiences as it challenges him to broaden his worldview. His interests in philosophy, psychology and sociology are fueled by a desire to understand inequity in society and how to address it through education.
On weekends and during breaks Kofi enjoys reading mystery novels, learning about art history and watching seasons –yes, seasons- of his favorite t.v. shows on Netflix.
To him, helping students develop the skills they need to be successful is the most exciting part of being the Assistant Director. Stop by and speak to him in the Titan Success Center.
To contact Kofi, email email@example.com
Meet Erin Brown, an Academic Success Coach in the Titan Success Center!
Erin is a Houston native and Indiana University South Bend alum who adores libraries, learning, and alliteration. She has worked as an English teacher in South Bend middle and high schools and for TRiO’s Summer Academy, and finds teenagers hilarious. When Erin was a student at IUSB, she worked as a peer mentor - advising fellow students in navigating campus, study skills and strategies, and financial and time management, and offered moral support.
In her free time, Erin is a homebody who revels in reading horror and thriller novels, cross stitching silly things, and just hanging out with her husband and two sons. When she does leave home, she likes to visit downtown South Bend and check out what’s new, or take the train to Chicago and explore the museums and people-watch.
Serving as an Academic Success Coach allows Erin to continue her mission to help students succeed and reach their academic goals. She looks forward to meeting as many Titans as possible.
Stop in and say hello and let us show you what the Titan Success Center can do for you!
To contact Erin, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Meet Araceli Lepe-Moreno, an Academic Success Coach in the Titan Success Center!
Araceli was born and raised in California. She moved to Indiana after finishing her bachelor’s degree in Rehabilitation Services in the school of Education at California State University, Los Angeles. Araceli has worked with helping students since she was a student worker in high school. For the past ten years she continued her work with students by working as the English Language Learner Advisor at Goshen High School(GHS). As the advisor at GHS she worked with students of different nationalities and cultures. She firmly believes that education is the key to success which is why she is currently pursuing her Masters of Social Work degree.
In her free time, Araceli likes to spend time with her family that includes her spouse and two children, Naomi and Victor. She also enjoys reading and traveling to California and Mexico to visit family.
Araceli is excited to join the Titan Success Center as the new Academic Success Coach. She looks forward to continuing her work with students and is ready to help students reach their goal of earning their bachelor’s degree at IU South Bend.
To contact Araceli, email email@example.com
Michelle Hairston is a graduate from John Adams High School. After graduation she attended the Leadership Academy at IU South Bend, which would forever change her life. Michelle became a student worker and quickly got involved with the campus community and that is when she fell in love with helping others. Michelle graduated from IU South Bend in 2009 with a Bachelors in General Studies and a minor in African American Studies. More recently Michelle graduated from IU South Bend with her Masters in Counseling and Human Services with a concentration in Mental Health in 2017. The program has helped Michelle become more aware of herself and the needs of others and is a better listener and has really learned how to meet people where they are in the moment. Michelle started working for IU South Bend in 2009 and currently works in the Titan Success Center with 21st Century Scholars and as a success coach.
To contact Michelle Hairston, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Sra. Cynthia Murphy, as she is known to her students, is a native Hoosier who graduated from Northwood High School and went on to attend Indiana University Bloomington (IUB) in 1980. At IUB, she participated in the Indiana/California Overseas Study Program where she lived with a host family in Lima, Peru South American for a year. This experience led her to later graduate with a Bachelor of Arts Degree, with a major in Social Work, from Goshen College in 1991. She has also earned a Bachelor of General Studies with a Paralegal Certificate from Indiana University South Bend (IUSB) in May 2012 and (Primero Díos) hopes complete her unfinished Master’s degree when she retires!
Her professional career includes 12 years at LaCasa of Goshen, a non-profit social services and housing development corporation, three years as Director of the Partners for Learning Pre-college Program at Goshen College, and 14 years (and counting) as the Recruitment/Retention Counselor for Latino and other underrepresented minority students at IUSB. She is honored to have spent more than a quarter of a century partnering with Latino communities in Elkhart, Marshall, and St. Joseph Counties. She has been honored for her as roles as advisor to the Latino Student Union and Administrator of the Year by the IU South Bend Student Government, and for outstanding service and dedication to the Latino community by the Civil Rights Heritage Center of IU South Bend. She was honored as a “Humanity Knows No Borders” award recipient during the tenure of former La Casa de Amistad Director Rebecca Ruvalcaba and again under the current leadership of Director Samuel Centellas. She has also recieved the LaCasa and Hispanic Leadership Coalition (HLC) Adelante Program Certificate of Excellence. She is a current member of the Indiana Latino Higher Education Council, past member of the Hispanic Leadership Coalition of St. Joseph County, a former founding Board member for the Center for Legal Justice, and former Board member and Vice-Chair for the Latin American Chamber of Commerce. In addition to her students, who are her “familia”, she is also a proud mom to daughters Megan and Chelsey and abuelita to her granddaughter Claire.
To contact Cynthia Murphy, email email@example.com
Lori began working for IU South Bend in 2017 and currently works in the Titan Success Center as an Administrative Assistant. She is dedicated to working alongside and supporting the Academic Success Coaches with the shared commitment in providing students with the help and guidance they may need.
Outside of work, she enjoys traveling, going to concerts, attending sporting events and especially spending time with her family.
She is excited to work with and provide support to her colleagues and learn new and different things. She looks forward to greeting the students and making them feel welcome at the Titan Success Center.
to contact Lori Schmatz, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Is a First Generation IU South Bend Alum. While attending Indiana University South Bend, she participated in University Events, Japanese Club, Dance, and worked as a Tour Guide in the Admission’s Office. She is grateful for the guidance and support that IU South Bend has provided to reach her goals! Now as a member of the Titan Success Team, she wants the carry on IU South Bend’s mission to help students along the way!
Before Alex joined the Office of Student Engagement and Success, she worked in Student Services at the University of Notre Dame and Salvation Army Kroc Center. Alex enjoyed working with students on campus and getting to know students from all over the world. She also had the pleasure of spending time in the community by volunteering at Stone Soup Community and Downtown South Bend’s Events.
In her spare time, she enjoys sewing, crafting, hiking, reading, attending Broadway Shows, and an occasional Netflix Marathon