Linda Lara comes to CARTA with over 14 years of Academic Advising experience. She started career in advising at Miami Dade College. She then transitioned to FIU’s College of Arts & Sciences in 2008 as an Academic Advisor and was later promoted to Assistant Director of Advising Services at the Biscayne Bay Campus in 2010. She led the advising team and provided support services to the Dean’s Office. She earned two degrees from FIU: BA in Psychology, and MS in Higher Education Administration with a concentration in Student Affairs in 2007. In 2016, she was recognized by her peers and received the Significant Impact on Advising Community and Advising Partner Award. She is an optimistic, well-rounded, compassionate, and versatile leader. She also enjoys mentoring, teaching and leading a group of like-minded individuals who are innovative, and proactive with achieving results. Linda now serves as Assistant Director, of Academic Support Services for the School of Communication + Journalism.
School of Architecture
Ruth joined CARTA with over 10 years of advising experience. Her background comes from Miami Dade College, where she worked as an intervention, retention, and transfer specialist. She joined FIU in 2016 as an Exploratory advisor and later transitioned to CASE as an Interdisciplinary and Liberal Studies expert, helping students achieve their career goals. Ruths advising style includes being honest and transparent, and she now serves as an academic advisor for Architecture, Interior Architecture, and Landscape Architecture.
Department of Art + Art History
Maida has a true passion to change students’ lives through education and has devoted herself to teaching and advising. She joined FIU in May 2011 as an academic advisor for the College of Undergraduate Education and became part of the CARTA family in the year 2013. She currently advises Art + Art History students. Prior to FIU, Maida worked at Miami Dade for three years where she began her advising career in Advisement and Career Services. She earned both her undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Havana: A Bachelor’s degree in English Literature and a Master’s degree in Tourism and Marketing.
Lauren began her career at FIU in 2018 as an academic advisor for Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management. Previously, she was employed at Johnson & Wales University in North Miami for seven years as an academic support advisor . She earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from the University of Central Florida and her Master’s of Education Degree in School Counseling from Florida Gulf Coast University.
School of Communication + Journalism
Nancy Bonny serves as an Academic Advisor for the Department of Communication/ Communication Arts (Fully Online) students and PRAAC. She earned her B.A. in Political Science from Florida Atlantic University. She also earned her M.S. in Higher Education with emphasis on College Administration and Leadership from Kaplan University, and is currently pursuing her doctorate for Educational Leadership and Management. Prior to joining FIU in November of 2017, she had 4 ½ years of experience working at an online university as an advisor working with online undergraduate and graduate students.
My name is John Fortilus; I serve as an Academic Advisor II for the College of Communication, Architecture + The Arts (CARTA). I began my career at Miami Dade College as an advisor. I have over six years in student services in the field of higher education. I earned two degrees from FIU: BS in Sport and Fitness and MS in Higher Education Administration with a graduate certificate in advising. I enjoy guiding students through advising; in 2019 I had the opportunity to attend NACADA Summer Institute where I learned different techniques and methods of holistic advising. My advising philosophy is to partner with and empower students as they navigate their way toward their academic and career goals.
I have worked at FIU as a student employee and later as a professional since 2012. I have a previous Associates in Arts in Psychology from Miami Dade College and a Bachelors in Arts degree in Psychology from FIU. I attained a certificate in Women and Gender Studies throughout my undergraduate studies. I later decided to pursue a Master’s degree in Higher Education Administration with a graduate certificate in Academic Advising because I am very passionate about helping students pursue their educational dreams. As a first-generation college student, I understand that the journey toward higher education is not always easy. However, I love to advocate and support my students in any way I can. Currently, I am pursuing a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies with a Higher Education Track. Through my educational and professional experiences, I hope to lead by example, encourage my students to be lifelong learners, and demonstrate that graduation is the floor, not the ceiling.
Francisco Marrero began his advising career at FIU in January 2007. He currently serves as an advisor for the Department of Communication. Prior to academic advising, he was a coordinator at the Registrar’s Office at FIU. Francisco received a B.S. in Economics from Universidad de La Habana.
Juliette Saint Louis serves as an academic advisor for Communication Arts students. She also serves as one of the advisors for the Haitian Student Organization at Florida International University. Prior to academic advising, she was a graduate assistant for the office of Campus life working for the Student Government Association at Florida International University- Biscayne Bay Campus. Juliette received a B.S. in Business Marketing with a certificate in Customer Relationship Management from Florida International University and a M.S. in Higher Education Administration from Florida International University.
School of Music and Department of Theatre
Jessica Amores Diaz received her BM and MS degrees in Music Education (with a minor in Italian language) from Florida International University and began her career as a band and orchestra director for Miami-Dade County Public Schools in 2012. Mrs. Amores Diaz transitioned from the K-12 classroom in June 2019 as an Academic Advisor for the College of Business at FIU. She currently serves as the Academic Advisor for all students in the Department of Theatre and the School of Music, located in the Wertheim Performing Arts Center. Jessica performs regularly within the music and theatre community, including playing in pit orchestras and even music directing for shows such as Cinderella, Aida, Carrie, The Little Mermaid, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and Legally Blonde.