About the UAC

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Meet Your Advisor

 Ellen Richmond Headshot

Ellen Richmond

About Ellen:

Ellen Richmond is the Director of the University Advising Center.  After growing up abroad, Ellen attended Pitzer College in Claremont, CA and graduated with a double major in English and Psychology.  Her first job after college was as an Assistant Director of Admissions at Marymount College, Palos Verdes, CA where she was responsible for recruitment in Europe, Alaska, and several western states.  After 4 years in Admissions, Ellen moved to New York to attend Columbia University's Teachers College where she received an MA and an EdM in Counseling Psychology and switched gears from Admissions to Advising.   Ellen served as Assistant Dean of the Center for Student Advising (CSA) at Columbia University for several years, and spent her last two years in NY as the AVP for Student Services at a non-profit organization in lower Manhattan.  After 20 years in New York, Ellen made the break and moved to Dallas and SMU in the fall of 2011.  She has enjoyed exploring Texas, learning to drive again, and continues her futile-yet-determined quest to improve her pool game.



Tim Norris

Director for Advisor Education, Media, and Technology
Pre-Arts Advisor

About Tim:

Tim Norris hails from Ohio where he earned his Bachelor’s in Music Education and Master’s in Orchestral Performance from Ohio University. Tim made the 24 hour drive from Conneaut, Ohio to Dallas, Texas in the summer of 2008 to become the Graduate Assistant Conductor to the Meadows Wind Ensemble in the Meadows School of the Arts. During the many rests that a trombonist counts in orchestra rehearsals, Tim spent reading the economist. He is currently taking classes and working toward a PhD in economics.

Tim joined the University Advising Center team in 2009. Since then he has taken leadership roles on multiple university committees including serving as President and Executive Chair of the mustANG Advising Network Group. When he is not advising students, designing instructional media, or managing the training program in the UAC, he spends his time engaging the greater Dallas community through music. He currently serves as the Artistic Director and Conductor of the Oak Lawn Band along with trombonist in multiple community ensembles. 

 Scott Bartlett Headshot

Scott Bartlett

Assistant Director

About Scott:

Bio to come.








 Ricardo Garza Headshot

Ricardo Garza

Honors Advisor

About Rick:

Rick Garza joined SMU’s University Advising Center as the Honors Advisor in January 2011.  Previously, Rick was an Academic Advisor at UT Arlington, where he advised undeclared and at-risk undergraduate students.   Rick has also had valuable experiences in various areas of higher education to include positions in Student Life, Campus Diversity, Career Services, and Legal Affairs. 

Prior to his arrival at SMU, Rick earned a BA in English from UT Arlington, an MA in Higher Education Policy and Administration from Columbia University, and a JD from Albany Law School.  Aside from his time in New York attending graduate and law school, Rick is a native Texan having grown up in San Antonio.  His interests include creative writing, cooking, and rooting for the San Antonio Spurs.


 Janet Hopkins Headshot

Janet Hopkins

Senior Advisor
Pre-law Advisor

About Janet:

Janet grew up in Dallas, began her college career at SMU, left to get married & raise a family. She returned to SMU as both a student & employee. Finishing a BA degree in History & then a Masters’ in Counseling, Janet combined both her classroom and work experiences: 1) as Head Cashier in the SMU bookstore, when it was housed on campus; then 2) career counselor  and Assistant to the Recruiting Coordinator, subsequently an advisor/ prelaw specialist in the  University Advising Center, where she has worked for 10+ years.


 Carolyn Barden Headshot

Carolyn Barden

Pre-major Advisor

About Carolyn:

A native Texan, Carolyn Barden is an Academic Advisor and Transfer Liaison for the University Advising Center. She works directly with pre-majors, including: traditional first-years and sophomores, transfer students, veterans, international students, and the SMU Volleyball and Golf teams.

She graduated in 2006 from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and minors in Art History and Anthropology. Carolyn studied abroad for a year at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand, so she understands what an important aspect study abroad plays on a college education and is very happy to help students fit study abroad into their academic plans.

After graduating from Trinity, Carolyn spent three years working as an editor in Dallas in the nonprofit and private sectors before going to graduate school. In 2011, she earned a Master of Science in College Student Personnel at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, moved back to Dallas, and began working as an Academic Advisor at SMU.

In addition to her current advising duties, Carolyn is also pursuing a Master of Arts in Dispute Resolution at SMU.


 Ashley Ferrel Headshot

Ashley Ferrel

Pre-major Advisor

About Ashley:

Ashley came to SMU as an Academic Advisor in August 2012. She is currently serving as the University Advising Center’s liaison to Disability Accommodations and Success Strategies (DASS). In December 2012, she was appointed to the President’s Advisory Committee on the Needs of Persons with Disabilities.

Ashley graduated with a Master of Arts in Counseling from St. Edward’s University in Austin, TX. During her graduate studies, she earned the Presidential Fellowship Award and the Academic Excellence Award. While in Austin, Ashley interned at the Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders through the AmeriCorps program at Communities in Schools of Central Texas. She is passionate about empowering young adults to make informed choices regarding their personal and academic development.

Originally from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Ashley loves to dance, run, read, and cook new recipes. She is married to her college sweetheart and they have a dog named Charlie.


Susan Harris


Susan Harris

Pre-major Advisor



About Susan:

Susan Harris joined the University Advising Center in August of 2013.  She has been teaching as an Adjunct faculty member in the Department of Psychology since 2003.  Prior to coming to Dallas, she was an Assistant Professor at Northern Arizona University, a visiting Professor at Trinity University in San Antonio and a Post-doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Texas at Austin.  Susan earned her B.A. in Psychology from the University of Kansas (and remains a faithful Jayhawk to this day!) and her Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Texas at Austin.

During her time at SMU, Dr. Harris has been honored with the Extra Mile Award for excellence in teaching students with learning disabilities, as a HOPE honoree for professors who “have made a significant impact to student academic education both inside and outside of the classroom” and has received awards for excellence in undergraduate teaching in the Department of Psychology. 

In her free time she enjoys spending time with her husband and three children.  They are all avid runners and enjoy playing, or at least watching, soccer.  Susan loves to read, play tennis and follow Kansas Basketball. 

 Pam McNulty Headshot

Pamela McNulty

Pre-major Advisor

About Pam:

Pamela joined SMU in the fall of 2012. She currently serves a Pre-Health Advisor and also works with undeclared pre-majors. She enjoys engaging and empowering students to become autonomous learners and critical thinkers.

Pamela graduated from Northeast Louisiana University with a B.S. in Medical Technology after completing a one-year internship at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas. She is a board certified Medical Technologist with the American Society for Clinical Pathology, MT(ASCP). After working as an allied health professional and clinical instructor for more than a decade, she completed a Master of Science degree in Higher Education with an emphasis in College Teaching and a minor in Counseling from Texas A&M University-Commerce. Prior to joining SMU, Pamela worked at Eastfield College as a program coordinator, Director of School Alliance, and adjunct faculty member.
When not working, Pamela enjoys spending time with family and friends, traveling, and photography. Favorite destinations include Destin, Florida, Walt Disney World, and Washington, D.C.

 Sheumona Miller Headshot

Sheumona Miller

Senior Advisor

About Sheumona:

Sheumona Miller is a senior advisor in the University Advising Center. She is a native of Louisiana. She has an MBA from Our Lady of the Lake University with a concentration in healthcare management and a BA in Psychology from SMU. She is the founder of a 501( c )3 non- profit organization . 

In 2011 she was the recipient of the Office of Leadership and Community Involvement’s Outstanding Faculty/Staff Volunteer Award. In her spare time she enjoys working in the community, spending time with her twin daughters, family ,and friends.

 Ebonii Nelson Headshot
Ebonii Nelson

Pre-major Advisor

 About Ebonii:

Ebonii Nelson, a Dallas native, received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Southern Methodist University, and her Master of Education in College Student Affairs Administration from the University of Georgia. She enjoys sunshine and warm weather, reading and journaling, basketball and football, ballroom dancing, playing the French Horn, all things Puerto Rico, Jennifer Lopez and laffy taffys. Prior to SMU she worked at Texas Woman’s University with Volunteer programs and has previous experiences at institutions including: The University of Texas at Arlington, the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill, Gainesville State College, and the University of Georgia. Through these experiences she has been able to work in the areas of leadership, orientation, career services, student life/activities, intercultural affairs, Greek Life, student conduct, athletic support services, volunteer services and service learning initiatives, and policy creation out of the Dean of Students’ Office. She has a passion for college students and the college environment as she believes it brings together the diversity of the world and encourages students to grow as they challenge one another and test boundaries while learning both inside and outside the classroom. Her personal mantra is: “Life is about two things: Loving and Learning.” In her current role, as an Academic Advisor Ebonii works with undeclared students and exclusively with members of the Men’s and Women’s Basketball and Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving teams.


 Jeanene Renfro Headshot

Jeanene Renfro

Senior Advisor

About Jeanene:

Ms. Jeanene Renfro joined SMU in 1999.

She enjoys reading, writing and perusing catalogs.    

Her degree in History is from the University of Utah.







 Daphne Shipowitz Headshot

Daphne Shipowitz

Pre-major Advisor

About Daphne:

Daphne Shipowitz joined SMU as an Academic Advisor in 2012, after completing her Master’s in Counseling at the University of North Texas.  While at UNT, she concentrated her studies on the college and university student population.  Daphne is a National Certified Counselor and a Licensed Professional Counselor Intern.  Daphne earned her B.S. in Business Management from Guilford College in Greensboro, NC.  Daphne’s first career included Vice President, Branch Manager and Operations Manager positions in retail banking at The Columbia Bank in Columbia, MD and Wachovia Bank in Greensboro, NC.

Prior to completing her Master’s, Daphne raised two children and volunteered in numerous philanthropic organizations primarily in Southlake, TX.  Her daughter is a graduate of Elon University and is working for one of the big four accounting firms in Dallas.  Her son is a junior at Colorado College and majoring in Philosophy.  Daphne’s hobbies include running, yoga and photography.  She spends her vacation time traveling with her husband and family and enjoying the outdoors in Colorado.