What We Do

The CARE Team exists to assist students in distress and to ensure the success of members of the campus community. While the primary work and focus of the team is on students, it also receives and acts upon reported concerns for faculty and staff. Its primary mission is to promote student success as well as ensure the health, well being and safety of the CalArts community.

When an incident is reported or a person of concern has been identified, the CARE Team will evaluate the information, investigate as needed, and determine the appropriate intervention strategies. Concerns may include but are not limited to academic deficiencies, mental or medical issues, family or personal problems, transitional struggles, and/or conduct. Anyone in the CalArts Community can bring concerns to any member of the team. All reporting will be handled confidentially and sensitively. 

Who We Are

The CARE Team is chaired by the Assistant Dean of Student Affairs & Director of Student Success. The primary members of the team are as follows:

  • Michael Bryant, Associate Dean of Critical Studies
  • Cecilia Blauvelt, Personal Counselor
  • Erin Collins, Registrar
  • Randee Dorn, Personal Counselor 
  • Anessa Escobar, Associate Director of International Student Affairs & Global Engagement
  • Mark Farley, Campus Safety Supervisor
  • Cy Gage, Institute Academic Advisor 
  • Brian Gershey, Academic Advisor
  • Eva Graham, Institute Diversity Officer
  • Brian Harlan, Vice President of Student Experience & Associate Provost of Integrated Learning
  • Ashley Holthaus, Residence Life Coordinator
  • Bree Howard, Associate Provost for Academic Affairs
  • Maria-Victoria Perez (Chair), Assistant Dean of Student Affairs & Director of Student Success
  • Melissa Shepherd-Williams, Personal Counselor
  • G. Jesse Smith, Associate Vice President, Chief Operations Officer 
  • Student Health Office Representative
  • Jennie Watson, Senior Human Resources Officer

When We Meet

The CARE Team meets on a weekly basis during the academic year and as crises arise. During meetings the primary team members will discuss significant student issues based on reports received and determine the best strategies for intervention. Additionally, the CARE Team will receive updates and follow-up on previous cases.