Liaisons


David Estrella
Director of Admission

 dpe2103@tc.columbia.edu

My introduction to working in admissions came during my undergraduate years at Emory University, where I served as a student ambassador. Now I continue my ambassador role in a new capacity as the Director of Admission. Having completed a Masters degree from the University of Chicago in 2001 and a Masters degree in 2010 in the Department of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Teachers College, I’m able to provide insight about the graduate school experience and share my TC experience with a larger audience. I invite you to take advantage of the opportunities provided by the Office of Admission to explore Teachers College. Staff listed below work with specific departments and programs.  Whether it's attending an information session, meeting us on the road or setting up an appointment, the Admissions Team is here to assist you and we look forward to hearing from you.


Deanna Ghozati Gregory
Senior Associate Director of Admission
Mathematics, Science & Technology
International & Transcultural Studies
Sociology & Education
Economics & Education

 dg2117@tc.columbia.edu

Hailing from Westbury, Long Island, I earned my B.A. in Psychology at Stony Brook University and went on to attend Teachers College as a student in the Department of Counseling and Clinical Psychology. A proud ’06 graduate of TC, my journey in Admissions began as a part-time student worker, and has led me to my current role as Senior Associate Director. I work directly with two outstanding departments - Mathematics, Science and Technology and International and Transcultural Studies. Whether I am witnessing our Instructional Technology and Media students determine which emerging technologies enrich the learning experience or observing our International Educational Development students vigorously pursue new approaches to educate students in under-developed countries, I am constantly in awe of the work being done at TC. Although the students in my departments have varied backgrounds before arriving here, it is exciting to witness them come together with the shared mission of strengthening education throughout the world. I am an avid tennis fan, a cupcake and Disney enthusiast, an accomplished subway surfer, and I aim to have at least one meal a week involving buffalo chicken.


Simone Varadian
Associate Director of Admission
Arts & Humanities
Education Policy & Politics
Education

 sev2118@tc.columbia.edu

Welcome to Teachers College! I have been a member of the Office of Admission since 2010 and enjoy working closely with the inspirational applicants, faculty and staff in the Department of Arts and Humanities. My passion for student services and higher education began during my undergraduate studies at Purchase College, SUNY. Soon after graduating with a B.A. in Gender Studies, I was fortunate to land a position in the Office of Admission at Purchase. I had the pleasure of representing my alma mater for six years as I pursued my graduate degree in Higher Education Administration at Baruch College, CUNY. With nearly ten years of undergraduate and graduate admissions experience in the fields of education, liberal arts and sciences, and visual and performing arts, I am happy to provide guidance and support as you navigate the graduate admission process.


Ashley Blasland
Assistant Director of Admission
Counseling & Clinical Psychology
School Psychology

 ab3987@tc.columbia.edu

Originally, I joined the incredible Admissions Team as the Welcome Center Coordinator and Campus Visit Coordinator. Over a year and a half later, I am beyond excited to make the transition into my new role as Assistant Director, specifically working with the dynamic Counseling and Clinical Psychology Department. As a Syracuse native and University of Virginia graduate, I earned my degree in English. Before finding my home at TC, I spent the previous several years working in a law firm and performing in theaters across the country. My passion for student services and campus life was sparked through my work as a Resident Assistant and Senior Resident at UVA, where I had the opportunity to directly navigate hundreds of students through their first year of college. Similarly, my favorite aspect of my role at TC is engaging with the vibrant and diverse pool of prospective and current students that visit the Office of Admission. When I'm not connecting with students interested in Psychology at TC, I can be found writing stories for children, scouting out New York City's best mac n' cheese, and voicing various cartoon characters such as Rocket Girl. I would absolutely love to hear from you with any questions you may have throughout your application process and graduate school search.


Nicole Siniscalchi
Assistant Director of Admission
Organization & Leadership
Health Education & Nutrition

 nms2134@tc.columbia.edu

Hello! I first began my exciting journey at TC as an M.A. student in the Higher and Postsecondary Education program. Having grown up in the small town of Hyde Park, NY (where you can find the historic homes of Franklin D. and Eleanor Roosevelt) and receiving my B.A. from Siena College, located in another small town, I always found the idea of living in New York City fascinating; I was eager to move to the Big Apple to pursue higher education and to experience a much different cultural landscape. While in pursuit of my M.A. degree, I was fortunate enough to acquire a graduate assistantship position within the Office of Financial Aid at TC, which helped to shape my professional career. I ultimately worked in the field of financial aid for seven years and made the transition into the Office of Admission in 2016. I am extremely excited to continue to contribute to the TC community as a member of the amazing Office of Admission staff, and as the liaison for the department of Organization & Leadership--as you can imagine, as a graduate of the department, I have a strong connection to it! In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with family and friends, staying active at the gym, running through Central Park, and watching a variety of different sports. I also have a passion for honey, cookies, and chocolate...life is all about balance! Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions you may have!

Dinah Smithey
Admission Counselor

 ds3574@tc.columbia.edu

As a native Texan, I’m proud to be the resident Southerner in the Office of Admission and represent those of us who say “y’all” in our daily vocabulary. Equipped with a Bachelor’s degree in French from the University of Georgia and a Master’s degree in Higher Education and Student Affairs from New York University, I was thrilled to join the TC team in August 2016 as the Admission Counselor. My passion for guiding students in achieving their academic goals stemmed from experience in several areas of student services, including study abroad, student affairs, graduate admissions, and college-level teaching. A lifelong learner, I hope to continue researching and pursuing a deeper knowledge of higher education, focusing specifically on institutional branding, marketing, and admission practices. At TC, my role allows me to oversee the non-degree application process, provide advising sessions, and coordinate campus visits for our guests from around the world. When not advising TC applicants, you can find me obsessing over college football (Go Dawgs!), frequenting the French establishments of New York, and seeking out live music. I recognize what a challenging process writing the next chapter in your academic career can be, but my goal is to seamlessly guide you through it… and even help you smile in the process!


Ralph Martinez
Systems Data Coordinator

 rm3294@tc.columbia.edu

As one of the newest members of the Admissions Team, I couldn't be more excited to begin a brand new journey at TC as the Systems Data Coordinator. I grew up in Los Angeles where in my college years I studied Art History with an emphasis in Graphic Design at California State University, Long Beach and continued my studies in Leadership and Organization Management at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts where I received my Bachelor's Degree. I am no stranger to the field of higher education, as I have actually spent more than 17 years working in both college administration and admissions departments in various capacities. Most recently, I had the pleasure of serving as the Admissions Analyst at Brandeis University, where my time was devoted to the world of data queries, audit reports and enrollment management. Currently, I'm embarking on a new venture as a Master's student in the Higher and Post-secondary Education program and I'm very excited to begin my journey towards obtaining my masters degree. At Teachers College, I truly enjoy working “behind the scenes” on our various technical systems, always with the hope that I am contributing positively to your personal experience as an applicant during the admission process. I look forward to my future as a member of the Teachers College community, and am delighted at the prospect of speaking with you on my path here.

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