Aurora University

Meet the Staff

 

 

Sean Frey

Sean Frey

Athletic Recruiting Liaison

Phone: 630-844-3849
Email: sfrey@aurora.edu

Hear from Sean.

Education Background: I graduated from Penn State University in 2009 with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.

What advice would you give to a first-year or prospective student? Get involved and try different things. Even if you arrive on campus with a good idea of what you want for a career, you may discover something different that is perfect for you.

What are some of your hobbies? I enjoy watching and broadcasting sports, and watching theatre.

Words you would use to describe AU: Community, family, opportunity

Something interesting or unique about me: I am a play-by-play announcer for AU Athletics.

 

Shannon Gil

Shannon Gil

Freshman Admission Counselor

Phone: 630-844-5229
Email: sgil@aurora.edu
Hear from Shannon.

Education Background: I graduated from Aurora University with a Bachelor's degree in Psychology in May 2017.

What advice would you give to a first-year or prospective student? Don't be afraid to get involved and be a part of a community that invites you to be creative, a leader, and be yourself.

Favorite TV show: Friends

Favorite Quote: “Nothing is impossible, the word itself says 'I'm possible'!” ―Audrey Hepburn

Words you would use to describe AU: Community, Opportunity, Respect

What activities are you involved in outside of AU? I love to spend time with my family and friends. You can find me enjoying the beautiful outdoors, cooking and baking, or watching movies.

 

Anna Halvax

Anna Halvax

Senior Admission Counselor

Phone: 630-844-7879
Email: ahalvax@aurora.edu
Hear from Anna.

Education Background: I graduated from AU with my Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration in May 2018.

Favorite TV show: The Office or Stranger Things

What advice would you give to a first-year or prospective student? For first-year students, get involved on campus! There are so many student organizations for you to join. Prospective students, do not be afraid to ask questions! Everyone is here to help you succeed. 

Words you would use to describe AU: Student-focused, challenging, opportunities

What was your favorite thing about AU when you were an undergraduate student? I loved my time as a member of the AU American Marketing Association chapter. It was a great opportunity to network, build relationships with my peers, and volunteer in the community! 

 

Candy Barrientos Jiminez

Candy Barrientos Jiménez 

Senior Admission Counselor

Phone: 630-844-5145
Email: cbarrientos@aurora.edu
Hear from Candy.

Education Background: I graduated from AU with my bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Spanish in May 2019.

Favorite Quote: “Feet, what do I need you for when I have wings to fly?'' ―Frida Kahlo

What advice would you give to a first-year or prospective student? Try to step out of your comfort zone! Join student organizations that will help you network, create life-lasting friendships and fun memories. 

Something interesting or unique about me: While studying for my bachelor's degree, I was able to study abroad in Milan, Italy, for one month to learn some Italian. It was an amazing experience! 

 

Haley Pessina

Haley Pessina

Associate Director of Freshman Enrollment

Phone: 630-844-5298
Email: hpessina@aurora.edu
Hear from Haley.

Education Background: I graduated in May 2015 from Aurora University with a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice degree and minors in sociology, psychology, pre-law and Spanish. I recently earned a Master of Science in Criminal Justice from Sam Houston State.

Favorite Quote: Pretty much everything in “To Kill a Mockingbird!” If I had to choose one it would be, "Atticus told me to delete the adjectives and I'd have the facts."

Favorite Book: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

What advice would you give to a prospective student? Do not allow yourself to be comfortable. If you are always comfortable you will not grow. Push yourself to try new things and things you never thought you could do. You won't regret it!

What are some of your hobbies? I love reading, cooking, and hiking.

What was your favorite thing about AU when you were an undergraduate student? Getting together with friends on campus to hang out or study. Some of my best friends are from classes I took here and the organizations I was involved in. You spend so much time together that they become family. Having these kinds of relationships make even the most stressful and challenging times fun!

 

Will Schuneman

Will Schuneman

Freshman Admission Counselor

Phone: 630-844-5143
Email: wschuneman@aurora.edu
Hear from Will.

Education Background: Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies of Business and Philosophy, Dominican University '17; Master of Business Administration, Aurora University '22.

Favorite Quote: "The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step." ―Lao Tzu

What advice would you give to a prospective student? Ask a lot of questions, make new friends, and learn something new every day.

What are some of your hobbies? Cooking, fishing, and watching and playing sports.

Words you would use to describe AU: Beautiful, Inspiring, Home

 

Marisol Velazquez

Marisol Velazquez

Freshman Admission Counselor

Phone: 630-844-5465
Email: mvelazquez@aurora.edu
Hear from Marisol.

Education Background: I graduated from AU with a Bachelor of Social Work degree in May 2019.

What advice would you give to a first-year or prospective student? Build relationships and networks wherever you can because it's not always about what you know, but who you know.

Favorite Quote: "You are what you believe yourself to be." ―Paulo Coelho

Something interesting or unique about me: I was a Mexican folklore dancer in Aurora, IL, for over 10 years!

 

Joel Ortega

Joel Ortega

Associate Dean for Athletic Recruiting  

Phone: 630-844-3853
Email: jortega@aurora.edu
Hear from Joel.

Education Background: Bachelor's in Business Administration and Marketing in 2013, Master of Business Administration in 2014, and Master of Science in Digital Marketing in 2016, all from Aurora University. 

What advice would you give to a first-year or prospective student? Make sure to give it your all starting your freshman year. There are so many opportunities to make great connections both socially and professionally. Take advantage of your resources.

Words you would use to describe AU: Encouraging, Demanding, Relationships

What are some of your hobbies? I love the Outdoors! Things like camping, rock climbing, hiking, and taking road trips.

What was your favorite thing about AU when you were an undergraduate student? The people. Everyone at AU wants to see you succeed and they do everything in their power to make that happen. When you attend AU, you don't just join a university. You find a second family.

 

Matt Crisman

Matt Crisman

Dean of Undergraduate Admission

Phone: 630-844-5426
Email: mcrisman@aurora.edu

What advice would you give to families exploring colleges? Have fun with the college search process! You and your family can never ask too many questions, colleges are here to help get you the answers you need.

What are some of your hobbies? Washing my car, biking, golfing, yard work, and DIY projects.

Favorite TV Show: NFL RedZone

Favorite Book: Winning by Jack Welch

Favorite Quote: “If you are going to achieve excellence in big things, you develop the habit in little matters. Excellence is not an exception; it is a prevailing attitude.” ―Colin Powell