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Meet the Staff
The ARC staff are trained individuals to help students meet their educational goals.
Elizabeth Smith-Freedman, Associate Dean, Academic Resources
Liz has 18 years of experience teaching study skills, writing, and test taking strategies to undergraduate and graduate students. Prior to her arrival at MassArt, she served as Assistant Dean of Academic Support Services at MCPHS University – Worcester/Manchester, Director of Disability Services at Regis College, and Director of Academic Support at Framingham State College. Liz holds a BA from Bates College and a Master of Arts in Teaching from Tufts University. In addition to supervising the ARC, Liz manages Student Accessibility Services and provides support to student with disabilities.
Daniel Szabo, ME, MFA - Director of Advising
Dan holds a Master of Computer Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and an MFA in photography from Maryland Institute College of Art. Dan has worked at MassArt for twenty-two years, in Admissions, Academic Advising, and as head of the Academic Resource Center. He previously worked as a software engineer, photographer, cinema projectionist, photographic salesperson, photographic lab technician and museum docent. He enjoys writing, computer programming, film critique, and pizza production.
Eric Dusseault, MA - Assistant Director of Academic Support Programs
Eric has his Masters of Art in Higher Education, Students Affairs Administration from Ball State University as well as a Certificate of Children's Book Illustration & Sequential Art from the Rhode Island School of Design. Eric has been working directly with college students and assisting them with achieving their goals for 15 years. In his current role, Eric works with and supervises the Peer Advisors, who work primarily with Foundation year and transfer students by providing one on one assistance as well as planning and executing events geared toward practical skill building. The Peer Advisors help students with their academic planning, access, and navigation of campus resources, and connect students that encounter problems to the appropriate resource. In addition to being an Assistant Director, Eric is also an instructor of Illustration for the Rhode Island School of Design in the department of Continuing Education as well as a Ph.D. student of Higher Education at the University of Massachusetts Boston.
Jessica Petriello, MA - Academic Advisor
Jessica (otherwise known as JP) is an educator, animal lover and adventurer who loves new experiences and surprises. She spent her undergraduate years at Penn State and Northampton Community College in Pennsylvania, and received her master’s in higher education and student affairs from UConn in 2010. Since then she’s worked as an academic coach and advisor in the Colleges of the Fenway, helped her friends throw themed weddings involving caves and candy, and immersed herself in local projects. She highly values creativity, curiosity, humor, dependability, and a sense of community, and strives to bring those values into her interactions with the world.
Part-Time and Academic Year Staff
Gretchen Ayoub - Success Coach
Paul Fitzgerald - Writing Specialist
Cindy Smith - Success Coach
Jennifer Tafe - Art History Specialist
Peggy Walsh - Writing Specialist
Anne Welch, MFA - Writing Specialist
Lyssa Palu-ay, PhD(c) MFA - Interim Provost, Associate Professor of Studio Foundation; Academic COMPASS Coordinator
Lyssa received her BA in Political Science from Boston College with additional coursework in the "Faith, Peace and Justice Program". She then earned an MFA in photography from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. Her photography has recently been featured at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco, the Arnheim Gallery in Boston, the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks, where her work received a jury award, the Boston Drawing Project 10th Anniversary Show, and the Illinois Institute of Art.