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Human Services Faculty
Purdue Global Leadership
Sara Sander began her career with Purdue Global in 1997. She has served in a variety of positions including professor of communications and languages and program coordinator for the School of Arts and Sciences, now known as the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. Her experience includes over 15 years of teaching adult learners, with a focus in the last 10 years in online education and administration.
Education: PhD, Capella University; MA and BA, University of Arkansas at Fayetteville
Research Interests: Emotional intelligence, faculty performance and behaviors, communication in the online classroomSara Sander Link
Miranda Brand has served as associate dean in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences since 2011. She joined Purdue Global in 2006 as an adjunct instructor in the School of Graduate Education and subsequently led the Department of Educational Studies as academic chair from 2008 to 2011. Prior to joining Purdue Global, she served 20 years in public education in various roles including teacher, curriculum coordinator, staff development presenter, and school administrator.
Education: EdD, Nova Southeastern UniversityMiranda Brand Link
Tessa Holst currently serves as the assistant dean of students within the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences where she oversees and generates initiatives to develop student engagement and improve student retention. She is also responsible for problem identification and resolution for second-level student complaints and conflicts. Prior to her current role, Holst served as the graduation director and event planner within the Provost Office. She was responsible for bi-annual graduation event ceremonies, celebrations, and faculty retreats. She has worked in higher education for over 25 years and recently completed her second term as school board member for her local school district, having served for 4 years as president.
Education: MS, Kaplan University (now Purdue Global)
Honors and Achievements: 2017 Social and Behavioral Sciences Outstanding Non-Academic Support Team Award (Kaplan University), 2005 Hero Award (Kaplan University), 2003 Extra Mile Award (Kaplan Higher Education)Tessa Holst Link
April Hrabar has been with Purdue Global since 2020 as an instructor with the School of Nursing. Before joining the Purdue Global team, Hrabar was the administrator of an online undergraduate health sciences program and the senior leader of a multi-leveled nursing department. In her 15 years’ experience in higher education, she has focused on adult and non-traditional learners, online instruction, program development and expansion, and institutional and programmatic accreditation.
As part of her passion for connecting students with global initiatives, she was previously the founder and executive director of an organization providing aid and medical care for Indigenous people of the Amazon Rainforest. Through this foundation, she has immersed students and faculty in life-changing cultural experiences to make a positive impact in these fragile communities. She continues to pursue community outreach in promotion of global health and wellness.
Education: EdD in Educational Leadership, Liberty University; MSN in Nursing Education, Liberty University; BS in Nursing, University of Maryland.
Honors and Achievements: Nurse Leadership Institution Fellow (2010); Corporation for National Service National Service Award (2002)
Research Interests: Professional behaviors, writing skills, faculty and student engagement in online environments
Maggie Morgan has served as the program chair for the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences since February 2020. She joined Purdue Global in 2006, as an adjunct instructor and subsequently worked as an assistant chair in the School of General Education until her promotion to assistant dean. She has over 25 years of experience in human services with a specific focus on military families.
Education: PhD, Capella University; MEd, Northwestern State University of Louisiana
Research Interests: Assessment in higher education, resilience, educational outcomes in military childrenMaggie Morgan Link
Jessie Budzinski has served as the assistant department chair for the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences’ Human Services department since March 2021. She joined Purdue Global in 2009, as an adjunct instructor. In 2011, she added course leader to her role and in 2015, she became a full-time adjunct instructor and faculty mentor.
Before teaching in higher education, Budzinski was a field instructor for the College of Social Work at the University of South Carolina where she supervised and evaluated social work students in the master’s degree program. Budzinski worked with young children with special needs and their families and has presented at state Head Start conferences and national Birth-to-Three Institutes.
Education: MSW, University of Michigan
Honors and Achievements: Human Services Faculty Member of the Year, Outstanding Professor Nomination, Outstanding Course Leader, Outstanding Full-time Adjunt Faculty Member
Research Interests: Student retention and innovation in the online classroomJessie Budzinski Link
Purdue Global Full-Time Faculty
Juliet Bradley teaches a variety of courses in the Human Services Department, and has revised and developed courses on the undergraduate and graduate level. Within the Human Services Department, she has also acted as faculty advisor for different student organizations, mentored new faculty members, and has served as a course lead for several classes. Additionally, she served on several University-wide committees and task forces and has facilitated orientation sessions for new students. Bradley has worked in higher education since 2006, teaching courses related to human development, behavioral health, and human services in onground and online formats. Additionally, she is a Licensed Social Worker with 17 years of experience in the fields of human services and social work and has experience writing grants for a nonprofit mental health agency.
Education: PhD, University of Delaware; MSW, Boston College; BA, West Chester University
Honors and Achievements: Presentations at national and international conferences
Research Interests: Children with disabilities, adolescents with mental health issues and substance use problemsJuliet Bradley Link
Tuwana Evans began her career with Purdue Global in 2021 in the Department of Human Services and is now a full-time adjunct professor. Evans is a licensed clinical social worker in the state of Illinois and has over 20 years’ experience in social services as well as teaching in higher education.
Education: PhD, Illinois State University; AM, University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration; BA, Purdue University
Publications: Wingfield, T. T. & Adams, R. A. (2019). Reflections of two Black early career social work educators teaching mostly white students at PWI. Reflections, 25(1), 16-31.
Edmonds-Cady, C. & Wingfield, T. T. (2017). Social workers: Agents of change or agents of oppression. Social Work Education, 36(4), 430-442. doi10.1080/02615479.2017.1291802
Certifications: State of Illinois, Licensed Clinical Social Worker, License 149.012576
Honors and Achievements: 2019 Recipient of Phi Alpha Social Work Honor Society Honorary Member
Memberships: Council on Social Work Education
Research Interests: Black feminism, Critical Race Theory, Critical Race Feminist Theory, intersectionality, anti-coloniality, abolition, culturally responsive education, cultural humility, social work field education, educational experiences of African American women and girls, identity development, and mentoring.Tuwana Evans Link
Monica Farrar is a full-time adjunct faculty member in the Human Services Department. Farrar joined Purdue Global in 2017. Farrar has over 20 years’ experience working with individuals with mental health and substance use disorders in multiple setting including private practice and is licensed in the state of NY and VA.
Education: MS, State University of New York at Buffalo; BS, Springfield College
Certifications: (NYS) Credentialed Alcoholism & Substance Abuse Counselor; Certified Recovery Peer Advocate; Recovery Coach & Recovery Coach Trainer. (VA) Certified Substance Abuse Counselor; Board Certified-TeleMental Health Provider
Honors and Achievements: Outstanding New Faculty Award Purdue Global (2019); Outstanding University Service Team Award Purdue Global (2020); and Organization Builders Team Award Purdue Global (2020)
Memberships: Member, New York Mental Health Counselors Association
Research Interests: Trauma related to substance use, career developmentMonica Farrar Link
Michelle Fischer began her career with Purdue Global in 2004. She has served in a variety of positions including adjunct faculty and assistant administrator in professional studies, adjunct faculty in psychology and human services, and full-time adjunct and faculty member in human services. Fischer’s experience includes 23 years of teaching, with focus of the last 20 years in online education teaching adult learners. In addition, she is the Executive Director of Caring Adoption Associates, an agency she founded in 2003.
Michelle Fischer Link
Education: MSW Temple University; BA Millersville University
Honors and Achievements: Outstanding Professor and Outstanding Course Lead, Purdue Global; Outstanding Faculty, Kaplan University; Gould Award for Teaching Excellence, Delaware County Community College
Memberships: Pennsylvania Licensed Social Worker, National Association of Social Workers, Academy of Certified Social Workers
Research Interests: Adoption, attachment, and trauma
Courtney Liferidge began her career at Purdue Global in 2021 as a part-time adjunct faculty member in the Department of Human Services and was promoted to full-time faculty member in 2023. Liferidge has served as a course leader and revised several courses on the graduate level. In addition to teaching, Liferidge has worked in the social and human services field for over 10 years, working with children, adults, and the senior population, in various capacities from direct care, program administration, to community engagement.
Courtney Liferidge Link
Education: PhD, Capella University; MEd, Cambridge College; BA, Winston-Salem State University
Certifications: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Workplace
Research Interests: Race/culture, religion/spirituality, family dynamics, human development and sexuality
Rebekah Phelps began her career at Purdue Global in 2021 as a part-time adjunct faculty member in the Department of Human Services and is now a full-time faculty member. Phelps is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LSCW) in the state of New York and state of Pennsylvania. Phelps has 10 years of clinical experience in the field of mental health where she has worked with a variety of populations to include foster care settings, correctional settings, higher education, crisis services, hospital services, and outpatient clinical treatment. Phelps has experience working with youth, families, couples, college students, and incarcerated individuals.
Education: MS, California University of Pennsylvania; MSW, University of Southern California; BS, University of Pittsburgh
Certifications: State of New York, Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW); State of Pennsylvania, Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW); Certificate in Traumatic Stress Studies
Memberships: National Association of Social Work (NASW)
Research Interests: Traumatology, stress response regulation, suicidology, domestic violence, physiology, psychophysiology, neurofeedback, biofeedback, and trauma-related disorders
Linda Simon teaches classes in the Human Services Department. She began her career as a probation officer. After working in this field for a few years, she decided to obtain her counseling degree. Simon has over 19 years of experience working with couples, families, and children/adolescents in different settings. She has served as a peer reviewer and is the faculty advisor for the Tau Upsilon Alpha honor society. Simon is currently licensed as a Professional Counselor in the state of Georgia and is also a National Certified Counselor.
Education: EdD, Argosy University; MS, Jacksonville State University; BA, Shorter College
Honors and Achievements: Numerous presentations on stress, burnout, and academic success in the elementary and middle school setting
Research Interests: Stress, burnout, bullying, preventionLinda Simon Link