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Meet the staff

Denise Poole

Denise Poole

(she, hers)

Director, Student Success Initiatives

Denise Poole join Penn State in July 2019 as the Unversity’s inaugural director of student success and currently oversees the Student Success Center within Undergraduate Education. Before arriving at Penn State, Denise served as the director of academic and student-athlete support services and compliance officer at New York University. In this role, Denise oversaw operations for the Academic Affairs Office which offers eligibility, admissions, advising, and student development support to NYU’s Department of Athletics and varsity student-athlete population. Denise also and partnered with faculty and administration across NYU's ten undergraduate colleges and the Division of Student Affairs to support the University’s recruitment, retention, and student success initiatives. Denise served on various NYU committees and groups including the Undergraduate Advising Deans Committee, the Intercollegiate Athletics Advisory Committee, the NYU Advising Network, the Starfish ("NYU Connect") Core Configuration Team, and the Department of Athletics Senior Staff. Denise is a Past President of the National Association of Academic and Student-Athlete Development Professionals (N4A), serving as the Association’s president during the 2019-2020 academic year. She provided leadership to N4A's organizational enhancement and strategic planning efforts for the past 12 years and has served as a faculty member for the Association's Professional Development Institute for nine years. Denise earned her M.S. in applied educational psychology with a focus in college student development and counseling from Northeastern University and a B.S. in psychology from Saint Joseph’s University. Denise is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in workforce education and development with a focus on organization development and change. 

Chelsey Walls

Chelsey Walls

(she, her, hers)

Student Success Advocate

Chelsey Walls joined the Student Success Center in March 2022 as a Student Success Advocate. Prior to this role, she was with the Penn State Alumni Association for 8 years as the Assistant Director of Student & Young Alumni Programs, serving as the Blue & White Society's advisor and the Association's student membership expert. During her time as advisor, the Blue & White Society prioritized diversity, equity, and inclusion, becoming one of the most diverse organizations in its student leadership and programming. Chelsey earned her M.Ed in Higher Education with a focus in student engagement from Penn State and a B.A. in English from Marietta College. Chelsey was the first person in her family to obtain a college degree and is passionate about helping other first-generation students find success.

Katie Derreth

Katie Derreth

(she, her, hers)

Graduate Intern

Katie Derreth recently joined the Student Success Center as a Graduate Intern in January 2022. She is currently a second-year graduate student at Penn State University Park getting her M.Ed. in Higher Education with a focus on Student Affairs. Katie is also one of the Graduate Assistants in the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life where she coaches a few chapters and co-advises the Panhellenic Council. She has also previously worked as an intern for Penn State Student Activities, and as a Summer Intern for the Academic Engagement and Transition Programs Office at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Prior to coming to graduate school, Katie graduated from Elizabethtown College in 2017 and then worked in Admission at Albright College for a few years. Katie was very involved at her undergraduate institution serving as an orientation peer mentor, a tour guide, a division 3 swimmer and senior captain, and studied abroad, to name a few. Her experiences at Elizabethtown and in Student Affairs since then have all contributed to her passion of helping and supporting students in any way she is able. Katie is excited to work in the Student Success Center where she can continue her passion for supporting and advocating for students in their time at Penn State.

Felrette Greene

Felrette Greene

(they, them)

Graduate Assistant

Felrette Greene joined the Student Success Center as a Graduate Assistant in the Fall of 2021. They are currently a first-year student at Penn State pursuing a master’s degree in International Affairs. Felrette recently Graduated from the University of Rhode Island where they majored in Political Science. As a student at URI, they served on the Student Senate, acted as the President and Founder of the Black Student Union, and participated in multiple clubs and organizations that enhanced the campus community. Felrette has conducted research focusing on the intersection of Black women and rules that affect them within institutions and workspaces. During the summer of 2020, they were an intern for Senator Reed of Rhode Island. Through their multiple experiences, Felrette has a history of advocating for and mentoring others. Through these experiences, Felrette learned the importance of serving the community through leadership, advocacy, and support. Felrette looks forward to growing at Penn State, contributing to the mission of the Student Success Center, and engaging with this new community.

WanHsuan Huang

WanHsuan Huang

(she, her, hers)

Graduate Intern

WanHsuan joined the Student Success Center as a Graduate Intern in March 2022. She is currently a first-year student at the Penn State University pursuing her master’s degree in Counselor Education emphasizing in Schools and Communities. As an Asain international student, WanHsuan is passionate about supporting students going through life transitions and adjusting to cultural differences. WanHsuan graduated from National Taiwan University in 2020 with a Bachelor's degree in Sociology. During her study at NTU, WanHsuan participated in an education club serving elementary students from low-income families. WanHsuan worked as an intern in a secondary school guidance office in 2021. These experiences have contributed to her ability to work with students from various backgrounds. Through the learning and working history, WanHsuan is interested in facilitating the academic success of students and advocating social justice and cultural diversity. WanHsuan looks forward to working in the Student Success Center to devote her passion for the thriving of students and the community. 

Prior Staff