Lin Tang
Lin Tang, Ph.D., NCSP

Executive Director, Learning Resource Center and Office of Undergraduate Research and Studies

Dr. Lin Tang is an experienced Higher Education executive, a Licensed Psychologist, and a Nationally Certified School Psychologist (NCSP), with expertise in Student Success, Cognitive and Behavioral Psychology, Academic Support, Undergraduate Research Access, flexible learning initiatives and program development.

Dr. Tang has served in a leadership role at the Learning Resource Center (LRC) and Office of Undergraduate Research and Studies (OURS) at UMass Amherst for the past 16 years. Over the years, Dr. Tang transformed and grew the LRC and OURS to become the central academic and undergraduate research support unit for UMass Amherst, a unit that has been deemed critical to student success, and is at the forefront of academic support research and best practices.

Dr. Tang is data driven and evidence based, her area of expertise and scholarship is focused on transitioning students successfully into college, HyFlex academic support, academic coaching, and designing and implementing system level academic interventions founded on Universal Design Learning (UDL) principles.

Dr. Tang also teaches graduate courses for the Higher Education Program at UMass Amherst, most recently creating and teaching a Helping Skills for Professionals in Higher Education course - showcasing her unique blend of Higher Education experience with her background in clinical psychology.

When Dr. Tang is not at work, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two boys. She is an aspiring baker and sometimes Yogi.
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Stacie Vanesse
Stacie Vanasse

Associate Director

Stacie has been with the Learning Resource Center since September 2012. In her role as Associate Director, Stacie coordinates and supports day-to-day operations of the Course-based and Study Skills tutoring programs.

Much of Stacie’s work centers on program development and implementation. She uses her previous experience as a transition specialist to build programs that are effective for and accessible to the campus community.

A highlight of Stacie’s work is the training and support she provides to the peer tutoring team. Over the last few years, Stacie has focused on formalizing tutor development and aligned training to meet Level 1 and Level 2 CRLA (College Reading Learning Association) standards.

When she’s not at UMass, Stacie enjoys attempting DIY projects with her partner, James, and practicing her (very) amateur photography skills on her adorable pups, Franklin and Liberty Belle.
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Deb Phillis
Deb Phillis

Associate Director of the Office of Undergraduate Research And Studies (OURS)

Deb got involved in research as an undergraduate when searching for a work-study position. She was hired into a Drosophila genetics lab and was instantly fascinated; she would work in the field for the next 30 years.

Deb joined the Learning Resource Center in September 2010 where she worked with the newly formed Office of Undergraduate Research and Studies (OURS). In her role, Deb directly supports UMass Amherst undergraduate students looking for ways to be involved in research. Deb supervises and trains OURS Research Mentors and works with campus partners to help students learn about research and to actively help them find and apply to programs.

A highlight of Deb’s work is meeting with students one-on-one to help guide them to find opportunities that will help them gain skills and knowledge for their future endeavors. Another highlight is being able to work with a team of dedicated OURS research mentors who bring to the office their research experience, information, and personal experiences about the UMass Amherst campus.

When she is not at OURS, Deb enjoys the outdoors and nature.
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Rebecca Steinberg
Rebecca Steinberg

Assistant Director

Rebecca’s LRC journey began in September 2018 as a graduate assistant to the tutoring program. As a graduate student, she worked with Stacie to observe and train LRC tutors.

After graduating with a Master’s of Education in 2020, she worked in the nonprofit world, developing digital literacy and job readiness programming for refugee and asylum seekers.

Rebecca returned to the LRC as Assistant Director of Supplemental Instruction Programs in Spring 2023. She coordinates and supports day-to-day operations of the Supplemental Instruction Program in close collaboration with the executive director and SI Admin Team. Their combined efforts propel SI leaders in lifting their peers to reach their academic goals.

A highlight of Rebecca’s work is getting to know SI Leaders and seeing their growth during their time at the LRC, as well as working with an incredible team to ensure smooth program operations.

When not at the LRC, Rebecca can be found adventuring outdoors by foot or by bicycle, cooking something tasty, and enjoying time with her partner, Mark and their adorable/mischievous cat, Saffron. She welcomes gluten-free recipes (preferably with chocolate) and suggestions for trail running routes!
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Tenzin Zomkyi
Tenzin Zomkyi

Program Assistant, SI & OURS Programs

As Program Assistant, Tenzin is responsible for supporting the program leads in managing the day-to-day operations of the programs. Tenzin supervises SI Leaders and OURS Mentors by offering them all the support, resources and training needed to help peers access to LRC/OURS services. She also helps support students by eliminating barriers towards obtaining academic and undergraduate resources at the university.

Before joining LRC in Spring 2023, Tenzin was a graduate teaching assistant at George Mason University, where she taught different mathematics courses. Tenzin was also a part of various research projects in different fields of mathematics such as Number Theory, Graph Theory, & Combinatorics during her undergraduate and graduate school journey.

Outside of work, Tenzin enjoys binge watching, cooking, gardening and spending time with her family and friends. Good Netflix shows recommendations are always welcomed by Tenzin.
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Kereth Cole-Spigai
Kereth Cowe-Spigai

Student Access Manager

Kereth has been with the Learning Resource Center since November of 2021. In her role as Student Access Manager, Kereth specializes in connecting undergraduates with tutoring services. She also directly supports tutoring and front desk operations while services are running. In addition to supporting day-to-day operations, Kereth supervises the LRC’s front office staff and participates in the recruitment and training of tutors.

Kereth’s favorite part of her job at the LRC is collaborating with students to find out what they need to achieve academic success, whatever that may look like for them, and then putting them on the path to attaining it. Kereth firmly believes that academic support is for everyone and enjoys convincing skeptics that she is right about this.

When she’s not at the LRC, Kereth is generally distracted by her two cats, playing video games with her partner Jess, reading, or whipping something up in the kitchen.
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Zeke Shenk
Zeke Shenk

Office Manager

Zeke has been with the Learning Resource Center since January 2020. In his role as Office Manager, Zeke provides administrative support for the LRC’s daily operations.

While he enjoys the opportunity to wear many different hats at the LRC, a highlight of Zeke’s work has been collaborating with other members of the LRC team to promote an inclusive academic and research support environment that feels warm and welcoming for all students. Zeke believes that everyone can benefit from academic support and participating in research. He enjoys connecting his current role at the LRC with his previous experience doing advocacy and inclusion work with marginalized college students by supporting LRC operations behind-the-scenes and cultivating an office environment in which all students can feel comfortable accessing academic and research support services.

When he is not at the LRC, Zeke can be found watching reality TV shows of questionable quality with his partner, petting nearby dogs, and spending as much time in the ocean as humanly possible while still living in Western Massachusetts.
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Aadam Lokhandwala
Graduate Student Staff
Aadam Lokhandwala

Tech Lead

Having held various roles at the Learning Resource Center (LRC), including serving as the SI Supervisor in Fall 2023, Assistant Tech Lead in Spring 2023, and SI Leader for CS230 from Fall 2021 to Spring 2023, Aadam has been instrumental in cultivating successful peer-facilitated learning and contributing to the evolution of the LRC's technological framework.

Aadam's commitment extends beyond projects; he finds joy in returning to the LRC, driven by the wonderful team's dedication to supporting students. The collaborative spirit and shared passion for educational enhancement make the LRC a dynamic environment where Aadam thrives in leading innovative initiatives.

In addition to his current responsibilities, Aadam is actively involved in developing tools that streamline LRC operations, ensuring a seamless experience for both staff and students. Currently, he spearheads the creation of a research database set to launch on the LRC's webpage, further contributing to the center's commitment to enhancing accessibility and information dissemination.
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Cassidy Buchanan-Gauthier
Graduate Student Staff
Cassidy Buchanan-Gauthier

Academic Coach

Cassidy Buchanan-Gauthier is in his first year of the School Counseling Graduate Program in the College of Education. As an Academic Coach he gets to apply his education and wealth of life experience to his mission, supporting people on their journey.

It wasn’t until the age of 37 that Cassidy realized what he wanted to be when he grew up. Since that moment his entire life has been devoted to pursuing the goal of becoming a School Adjustment Counselor. As an Academic Coach with the Learning Resource Center he gets to live that dream of supporting students while continuing his education.

Attaining a B.A. in Psychology gave Cassidy the chance to reflect on the professional and personal experiences his life has provided. In particular, the sense of meaning and purpose he found in 7 years of AmeriCorps service while helping to provide that same opportunity for others. When not having the privilege of working as an Academic Coach and pursuing his academic dream Cassidy savors time with his incredible wife, three sassy children, eccentric family, and a sprawling constellation of friends.
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Tianyi Zhou
Graduate Student Staff
Tianyi Zhou

SI Supervisor

Tianyi is the Graduate Supplemental Instruction Supervisor at the LRC. Her role is to provide ongoing support to the SI cohort by monitoring and evaluating SI Sessions, addressing SI leaders’ concerns, and helping them develop their skills. Tianyi is also a doctoral student in the College of Education. When Tianyi is not at work, she loves hiking, practicing pilates, and jigsaw puzzles.
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Graduate Student Staff
Zoe Peritz Greenman

Tutor Supervisor

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