Meet the Academic Coaches

Nora Devlin

Nora DevlinMy whole life so far has prepared me for academic coaching. For years I did not understand anything about school, academics, studying, or teaching. I thought I was just bad at school and there was nothing that could help me get better. One day, I had an epiphany; I realized that studying is a skill that can be learned. I realized school was a game, but I knew none of the rules. This was about 10 years ago, and for the past ten years I have been studying the rules of the game of school so that I can help others master them as well. I graduated Summa Cum Laude from the Templeton Honors College of Eastern University (St. Davids, PA) with a double major in Spanish and Sociology. In 2014 I earned a 4.0 in my graduate certificate program in Coaching through Fielding Graduate University. I am now working towards my M.Ed. in Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education at the Rutgers GSE. I have worked in Universities, pre-K-12 public schools, and non-profits with a focus on (child and adult) education (especially with regards to language learning). I am also an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) as recognized by the International Coach Federation (ICF).

As a coach I have worked with people from ages 14-57. My approach to coaching is that purposeful conversation leads to purposeful action, and with purposeful action we can reach our goals. My goal is to be the best coach I can be, and in doing so help the students I work with meet the goals they set for themselves.


Michael Chue

 Hey there, my name is Michael, and I am currently a graduate student here at Rutgers studying school counseling and counseling psychology. I attended Rutgers for my B.S. in psychology and graduated in 2014. During my undergraduate studies, I had my moments where I struggled to be successful but I powered through those struggles and now I want to be able to help students that may be in the same situation that I was.

The reason why I have a passion for working with students is because I can always see the potential of success in students. Even when I struggled, my coaches, professors, and counselors always saw the potential in me and that always kept me going. Sometimes all it takes is one person to see the potential in you, for you to be able to find success and I want to be able to provide that for any of the students that I work with.

As of right now, I am also working at a high school as an intern school counselor and coaching part time for a high school basketball team. I am always trying to help people overcome their struggles and also help people realize the potential in themselves so that they can become the best that they can be.


Jasmine Henry

 My name is Jasmine Henry, and I am an engaging educator and musician with 6+ years of experience working with youth and adults. Currently, I am pursuing a Ph.D. in Musicology at Rutgers University and serve as Vice-President of the Rutgers Musicological Society. Additionally, I teach and advise students in music business, music technology, and popular music at a wide array of institutions including; Rutgers University, Felician University, Brookdale Community College, and Newark School of the Arts. 

Since high school, I've participated in many time-consuming activities and jobs. I was an active member of my high school's marching band, jazz band, wind ensemble, and stage crew. I managed my time well in high school, but when I got to college, I realized what worked for me in high school did not work for me in college. During my undergrad, I worked over 20 hours a week and consistently took 19 credits a semester. I encountered many difficulties achieving academic success while managing my demanding schedule. Over time, I learned to identify my strengths and weaknesses with the help of several workshops, tutors, and advisors. As an academic coach, I hope to help students reflect on their academic performance, learn from their strengths and difficulties, and set goals to perform to the best of their abilities. 

One of the most important things I have learned over time is that we have everything we need to succeed and reach our goals. It's just a matter of discovering what learning strategies and tools work best for us as individuals. I am proud to be a member of the Rutgers Learning Center family and look forward to helping students of all backgrounds learn more about themselves and how they can best achieve success. 


Mike Cate

 My name is Michael Cate.  I am a Rutgers graduate.  First I earned a BA with high honors in philosophy, and recently I earned an Ed.M. in school counseling from the Rutgers Graduate School of Education.  I have been a carpenter, an English language teacher in Japan, and I have helped develop progressive juvenile detention facilities for Native American communities.  I am a member of two classical schools of Japanese martial arts.  I cook, I bake…I probably have way too many hobbies.

Learning is at the heart of all the things I do.  Whatever I do, I ask myself questions like: “What do I know?”  “What don’t I know?”  “What does it look like to do this well?” and “How do I get there from here?”  I enjoy the process.  Of course, this has not always been the case…I am after all a high school drop out.

I left high school and I struggled for years at a community college.  I failed many classes and I constantly doubted myself.  However, at some point my outlook changed.  I stopped viewing academic success as a result of intrinsic talent and brute hard work, but skillful engaged work.  I took control of my own development and learning.  I thought about what I was doing, and how I could do it better.  The key was knowing and trusting that everything is a skill that can be developed and refined.  Also, it helps that this kind of learning is more interesting and sometimes even fun.

I am very proud to be a member of the Rutgers Learning Centers’ Academic Coaching team.   Our goal is to empower any and all students to be active skillful learners who can take control of their academic destinies.  I look forward to working with you.


Xiqiao Tong

 My name is Xiqiao Tong (first name pronounced like C-Ciao), I am currently studying for the Master’s of Information Technology and working as a Teaching Assistant at the School of Communication and Information. My undergraduate background is International Education, and I have instructional experience with both college and high school students.

I am a goal-orientated and self-motivated person, which I assume is critical when it comes to time management and active learning. I am always willing to share and give advice on studying strategies to help and motivate people around. What appeals me the most for being an academic coach is that we will come up with specific plans and solve problems for students to facilitate their study. My aim is not only promoting the students to have better academic performance at university, but also equip them with the techniques that will facilitate their future career and encourage them to be lifelong learners. Besides,I have various studying and living experience in Asia, Europe, and North America. I bring to the table a set of global perspectives and International insights, which qualifies me to serve a significantly diverse community as Rutgers.


Marina Shimarova

 Hi, my name is Marina. I received my Bachelors of Arts in Economics in the spring of 2017 from Rutgers University. I graduated magna cum laude after writing a research thesis analyzing the benefits of educational attainment on labor outcomes for individuals with a criminal record. I'm fortunate to have studied abroad twice (Utrecht, Netherlands and Paris, France) during my time at Rutgers. These trips have greatly enhanced my college experience, at the cost of developing a habit for Dutch stroopwafel and international cinema.

I have interests in advocacy, policy reform, and education, which I have found in both my academic experience and my role as a GED tutor at a NJ prison. 

I look forward to utilizing any resources I know to aid you in reaching your academic and personal goals, and taking advantage of all that Rutgers has to offer.  


Megan Osika

 My name is Megan Osika, and I am a Master of Education candidate in the College Student Affairs program at Rutgers University.  I earned my B.A. in English Secondary Education and Women's and Gender Studies at The College of New Jersey and received the Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon LGBT Activist Award while building community and addressing injustice as an undergraduate student.  My background in social justice and education has guided me towards the field of student affairs and has greatly informed my work with students.

When I was an undergraduate student, I struggled to balance my course work and student activities.  Once, I asked for an extension for a particularly difficult course and my professors told me that she was denying my request because she did not think I "had my priorities straight."  She was right.  My time management needed improvement and was a major cause of stress for me as a second-year student.  In my role as an Academic Coach, I hope to bring my own experiences to the table and to help alleviate some academic-related stress for others.