The Graduate School at Hood College has an experienced and dedicated staff. Our mission is to help you achieve your personal, academic, and professional goals.
April joined the college in 2006 as an instructor of both undergraduate and graduate courses in the biology department. She served as the interim director of the environmental biology master's program in 2009 and became the program's director and assistant professor of biology in 2010. April was appointed as the associate dean of the Graduate School in May 2015 and was promoted to associate professor of biology in spring 2016. April has taught a variety of undergraduate and graduate course for the biology department and environmental biology program with a focus on climate change and insect ecology. As dean, April oversees all graduate students and curricular initiatives, along with graduate admission and enrollment operations.
April earned her doctorate in ecology from the University of California, Davis in 2001, her master’s in animal behavior from Bucknell University in 1997 and her bachelor’s degree—liberally trained with a double major in psychology and classics—from Centre College in Danville, KY in 1994. An insect ecologist by training, she has published in several peer-reviewed scientific journals and was awarded a research grant by the USDA to investigate control measures for the small-hive beetle, a pest of the commercial honeybee. Given her pollinator work, April was instrumental in the passage of the Maryland Pollinator Protection Act in March 2016, which also resulted in her appearance on the Kojo Nmandi radio show and an article in the Washington Post.
Prior to her Hood appointment, April served as an instructor, curriculum developer and new-faculty mentor for UMUC. Due to her online experience, she has developed and continues to facilitate two fully online trainings for Hood faculty interested in alternative, online delivery modes. She has given workshops in online delivery for the CTL and has trained 50 plus Hood faculty from an array of departments, like computer science/information technology, foreign languages, nursing, education and psychology. For all of her professional accomplishments and exceptional service to the College and its students, April was awarded the Henry P. and Page Laughlin Faculty Professional Achievement Award in May 2014.
Christian DiGregorio serves as the director of graduate admission. He brings almost 18 years of enrollment experience to Hood College. His expertise are within the areas of strategic planning, analytics, and international enrollment and has presented at national conferences regarding best practices and trends in enrollment.
Christian graduated with a B.F.A. in Art Therapy from Kansas State University and later attained an M.S. in Secondary Education Counseling from Marywood University.
Christian is also the admission liaison for the following programs: Business Administration MBA, Counseling - Clinical Mental Health, Counseling - School Counseling, Ceramics Arts, MFA, Ceramics Arts, M.A., Ceramic Arts Certificate,Thanatology Certificate , Curriculum and Instruction, M.S., Education Leadership, M.S., Education Leadership Certificate Preparation, Elementary STEM Certificate, Mathematics Education, M.S./ Certificate, Mathematics Instructional Leadership, M.S., Reading Specialization M.S.and the doctoral programs in Organizational Leadership and Business Administration.
Larbi came to Hood in spring 2015 and earned a master’s degree in management of information technology in 2017, with a research thesis on network security. He earned his bachelor’s degree in computer science and system analysis from the College of Computer Science and Systems Analysis in Rabat, Morocco and has worked in the cybersecurity field. In the Graduate School, Larbi is the admission liaison for the following programs: Management of Information Technology, M.S., Biomedical Science M.S., Bioinformatics, M.S., and the Bioinformatics Certificate, Humanities, M.A., Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Behavior., Environmental Biology, M.S., and GIS Certificate.
Taeyol "Ted" O serves as Hood's Primary Designated School Official (PDSO) and Director of International Student Services and brings more than 15 years of higher education experience in international student services and advising, international education partnership projects, teaching and research. Prior to his joining Hood, he worked at Lake Land College, where he managed international student services, support programming for international students, and coordinated international education partnership and recruitment projects. Ted also worked for community service organizations in Canada and managed their acculturation programs for new immigrants and international students.
In the Graduate School, Ted serves as the primary point of contacts on F-1 international student visa issues, I-20, Curricular Practical Training (CPT), Optional Practical Training (OPT), international student transfer, international student activities and support programs.
Ted graduated with a B.B.A. in Business Administration from Kyungpook National University in South Korea and then attained an M.A. in Communication Arts from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He later earned a Ph.D. in Education from the University of Kansas.
Susie has held diverse positions in the legal, business, service and higher education sectors. Susie served as director of financial aid at Gettysburg Seminary, and she has experience in event planning from both the Seminary and as the owner of a small coffee shop. Her career in administrative support and management began when she served as office manager in the Franklin County District Attorney’s Office. In her spare time, Susie volunteers at both of her children’s schools in Gettysburg. She is the treasurer and administrative assistant of her youngest son’s Cub Scout pack, and enjoys conducting mock job interviews at her oldest son’s high school.
Susie uses an array of skills from previous career paths to fulfill her role as executive assistant to the dean in the Graduate School at Hood.
Gayle Bach-Watson oversees many initiatives associated with student success across programs in the Graduate School. A student in the DOL Program at Hood, she had lived at 17 addresses throughout the northeast United States. Gayle graduated from George Mason University with a bachelor’s degree in clinical psychology. She worked at a number of different positions in several different professions and then answered a call to attend seminary, graduating with a master of divinity from Wesley Theological Seminary in 1999. She is the pastor of Christ Reformed United Church of Christ in Shepherdstown, WV.
Mohammed Aljumaiah is the Graduate Assistant for the Graduate School . An international student from Saudi Arabia, Mohammed is working toward his master’s degree in Management Information Systems. He earned a diploma in computer technology from the College of Telecom and Information and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Al-Imam Muhammad Bin Saud Islamic University, both in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. He also worked for six years in the IT field in Saudi Arabia.
Emily is an undergraduate alum, returning to Hood for her Master's degree. She graduated from Hood in 2009 with degrees in Early Childhood Education and English and is now back, working towards her Master of Science in Reading Specialization.
After working in both public and private school settings, Emily chose to return to Hood because of the excellence of its Education programs. She enjoys the small classes and emphasis on practical knowledge and applied experience. After earning her M.S., Emily wants to return to the classroom and apply her greater knowledge to helping students learn to read. She is also interested in helping teach teachers, and helping more students learn to read through that.
Emily became an ambassador because she truly enjoys Hood and sharing what makes it special with others. She wants more people to realize what an amazing place this small college is!
Rinka is an international student from India. She received her bachelor’s degree in Commerce from Calcutta University and PGDM in marketing and communication from St. Xavier's College, Calcutta. She came to Hood to pursue her master of science in Information Technology.
After graduating in 2012, Rinka worked for Hewlett Packard and home health care startups in Bangalore, India. She has worked as a Marketing Analyst and her responsibilities have included a variety of data collection and analysis. She came to Hood not only for the IT program but because it provides a culture of learning and thinking beyond formal classrooms, and offers innovative learning experiences.
Even before joining the Ambassador program, Rinka enjoyed sharing her Hood story with prospective students and the community. "This role will allow me to represent and portray Hood College as a life-changing institution, which encompasses endless possibilities, opportunities, and relationships that couldn't be replicated in any other environment or institution."