Meet Your Admissions Coordinator

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Keera Clarke

Keera Clarke

Admissions Coordinator

Territory: St. Louis
Population: Freshmen & Transfer Students

Email: keera.clarke@siu.edu
Phone: 618-453-3782

Education: Coastal Carolina University, Master of Business Administration, 2021. Coastal Carolina University, Bachelor of Science in Recreation & Sport Management, 2020.

Hobbies: Painting, drawing, volleyball, biking, hiking, volunteering, and enjoying time with friends, family and my dog!

Best of SIU: Being surrounded by breathtaking nature and the endless opportunities on and off campus for growth!

Advice for choosing a college: Visit at least two or three of the colleges that are most intriguing to you if you can. How you picture a campus will only get you so far compared to seeing it in-person. Use the opportunity to look at different college sizes and locations to help determine the best place for YOU to live and thrive. Make connections with students and staff and be BOLD!


Rey Diaz

Rey Diaz

Admissions Coordinator

(hablo español)

Territory: Northern Illinois
Population: Transfer Students

Email: rdiaz@siu.edu
Phone: 773-481-6659

Education: Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Bachelor of Science, Speech Communication, 1992.

Hobbies: Fishing, hiking, biking, and hunting.

Best of SIU: The people, the school spirit, and the weather.

Advice for choosing a college: A campus visit is so important in the process of selecting the right college or university for yourself; please be sure to visit your top schools.


Carl Franks

Carl Franks

Admissions Coordinator

Territory: Central Illinois
Population: Transfer Students

Email: carl.franks@siu.edu
Phone: 618-453-2935

Education: Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Master of Science in Education, Workforce Education & Development, 2021. University of Montana, Bachelor of Arts, Sociology, 1995.

Hobbies: Drawing, movies, photography, exercise, and watching sports.

Best of SIU: The wide range of opportunities offered and the tremendous amount of support for students.

Advice for choosing a college: I would recommend visiting your schools of interest. Get all of your questions answered. You will get that feeling in your gut telling you what to do. Just know that there is something here for you at SIU!


Brittney Gant

Brittney Gant

Admissions Coordinator

Territory: Southern Illinois - Lower Counties
Population: Freshman Students

Email: brittney.gant@siu.edu
Phone: 618-453-2988

Education: Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Bachelor of Science, Finance (Financial Management), 2019.

Hobbies: Traveling, shopping, hanging out with friends and family, and watching Saluki athletic events.

Best of SIU: I love that you feel like you are at a large school, but have small class sizes. I also love the atmosphere and that everyone has so much Saluki Pride. Go Dawgs!

Advice for choosing a college: Visit the campus and ask a lot of questions. Ask what there is to do in the community (outside of campus) and see if that peaks your interest. You are in college for multiple years; you want it to feel like home and be able to go have some fun too.


Rachel Jackson

Rachel Jackson

Admissions Coordinator

Territory: Chicago (Southside and South Suburbs)
Population: Freshmen Students

Email: rachel.jackson@siu.edu
Phone: 773-236-7638

Education: Northern Illinois University, Bachelor of Arts, Corporate Communications, 2010.

Hobbies: Spending time with family and friends, traveling, shopping, volunteering and trying new restaurants.

Best of SIU: The diversity and variety of food options campus has to offer.

Advice for choosing a college: Visit as many institutions as possible. While on your visit, ask current students about their experience. Pursue a college that makes you feel comfortable, a place that feels like home. I also recommend establishing a relationship with your admissions counselor from those schools. Don't be afraid to ask questions and use your high school counselor or advisors as a resource.


Jason Nugent

Jason Nugent

Admissions Coordinator

Territory: Southern Illinois
Population: 
Transfer Students

Email: jason.nugent@siu.edu
Phone: 618-453-1008

Education: Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Master of Arts in History, 2001. Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Bachelor of Arts, History, 1997.

Hobbies: Reading and writing.

Best of SIU: I love the atmosphere and the natural beauty of the campus.

Advice for choosing a college: Visit the colleges you're interested in. Get a good feel for the quality of education and campus life. Reach out and ask questions.


Chase Pierce

Chase Pierce

Admissions Coordinator

Population: Freshman Students

Email: chase.pierce@siu.edu
Phone: 618-453-4778

Education: Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Master of Science in Economics, 2022. Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Bachelor of Science, Journalism, 2020. Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Bachelor of Arts, Economics, 2020. Sauk Valley Community College, Associates of Science, 2017.

Hobbies: Working out, eating, movies, spending time with family, long drives, seeing nature, photography, writing, pro wrestling, and podcasts.

Best of SIU: You feel like a real human at SIU. The moment I stepped on to campus, I felt like I was more than just a face in the crowd. I received personal attention from my first visit until graduation day. SIU provides the perfect environment to become the most confident version of yourself.

Advice for choosing a college: As someone who has studied numbers, I feel qualified in saying follow your heart. Of course, you should consult the rankings and costs of every school you're considering in order to weed out the extreme options. After that, take campus visits and prioritize how you feel at the end of each visit. In the long run, you will remember the way you felt and your overall collegiate experience.


Karma Smith

Karma Smith

Admissions Coordinator

Territory: Southern Illinois - Upper Counties
Population:
Freshman Students

Email: karma.smith@siu.edu
Phone: 618-453-2957

Education: Southeast Missouri State University, Master of Arts, English Studies, 2021. Southeast Missouri State University, Bachelors of Arts, Creative Writing, 2019.

Hobbies: Writing, gaming, anything True Crime, and playing with my dog, Sodapop.

Best of SIU: The beautiful campus and extensive research opportunities!

Advice for choosing a college: Make sure you choose somewhere you can be comfortable and feel at home for the next few years. Visit on your own to explore campus and the surrounding town to see if it's the right place for you!


Julie Strauss

Julie Strauss

Admissions Coordinator

Territory: Western U.S. (West of the Mississippi)
Population: Freshmen & Transfer Students

Email: julie.strauss@siu.edu
Phone: 618-453-7137

Education: Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Bachelor of Science, Curriculum & Instruction, 1991.

Hobbies: Dog showing, fishing, boating, kayaking, camping, and spending time with my dogs.

Best of SIU: I love our beautiful campus, surrounding area and how the educators care about your success. You are not a number at SIU, rather an individual masterpiece just waiting to experience a challenging, exciting, and completely unique experience.

Advice for choosing a college: I highly recommend visiting the colleges you are interested in to see if you can see yourself in the environment. Do not be afraid to ask questions, and above all, step off the curb and get the ball rolling. The faster you get that ball rolling, the more successful you will be. There is no such thing as failure, only learning experiences.


Jordan Trude

Jordan Trude

Admissions Coordinator

Territory: Northwest Illinois & Iowa
Population: Freshmen Students

Email: jdt24@siu.edu
Phone: 618-453-1302

Education: Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Bachelor of Science, Sports Administration, 2018.

Hobbies: Traveling, trying new types of food, experiencing different cultures, watching movies with friends, and sporting events.

Best of SIU: My favorite thing about SIU and Carbondale is the diversity of people, thoughts, and opinions that you are faced with every day. It challenges you to look within and become the best version of yourself.

Advice for choosing a college: Start putting together a list of schools that you’re interested in early on. Visit your top schools, figure out where you are most comfortable, and see what it would cost for each. Once you have it narrowed down, figure out which one offers you the best mix of opportunity, experience, and education.


Asia Watson

Asia Watson

Admissions Coordinator

Territory: Southern U.S.
Population: Freshmen Students

Email: asia.watson@siu.edu
Phone: 618-453-2184

Education: Illinois College, Bachelor of Arts, Business Management, Communication & Rhetorical Studies, and Interfaith Studies, 2021.

Hobbies: Dancing, cooking, going to concerts, and spending time with her family, friends & dogs.

Best of SIU: The beautiful campus and the array of students and staff that come near and far to makeup the Saluki Family.

Advice for choosing a college: Take multiple visits to universities of various sizes. See what the surrounding areas have to offer. Ask many questions and talk to students and hear their experiences. Pick the place that feels most comfortable.