Meet the Freshman Admission Staff

Ryan Cockerill
Ryan Cockerill
Director of Admission
cockerry@lewisu.edu

Ryan graduated with a B.S. in Speech Communication from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale and also earned an M.S. in Communication Studies from Northern Illinois University. He has been involved in college/university admission for the past eighteen years; he has been with Lewis for the past twelve years.

Ryan is originally from the Quad-Cities (go Rock Island Rocks!). In his free time, he enjoys watching science fiction films, listening to “80’s” music, rooting for the Bears, Bulls and White Sox, and “hanging out" with his son, Quin.

Sean Whitten

Sean Whitten
Associate Director of Admission
whittese@lewisu.edu

Sean has been working in the admissions/enrollment profession for the entirety of his career. His educational background includes a B.A. in History with minors in Classical Studies & History of Philosophy and a graduate degree, M.A. in Education, with a specialization in Higher Education. He enjoys working with students and their families who are aiming to enrich their lives through the LaSallian values that reside at Lewis University.

Sean was born in Germany (an Army brat) but was raised a Hoosier. He is a self-proclaimed nerd-jock, being a former Track & Field sprinter/jumper and holding a devotion to history, philosophy and comics. Always the avid sports fan, he follows the New York Yankees, Chicago Bulls & Blackhawks, and college football. In his free time, Sean spends time with his wife, his daughter, and newborn son, Grayson.

Natalie Castro
Natalie Castro
Freshman Admission Counselor
castrona@lewisu.edu

Natalie is a 2009 alumna who will soon complete the M.A. in Counseling Psychology at Lewis. Natalie has worked on campus her entire academic career, which has helped establish and foster her love for all things Lewis.  She is excited to be back in the Lewis community as a Freshman Admissions Counselor.  Her favorite aspect of Lewis is the sincere sense of community and comradery among the faculty, staff and students.  She believes that the Lewis mission is genuinely embodied by its community.

Natalie lives in Shorewood with her family, two dogs and cat.  In her free time, Natalie enjoys spending time with her family and friends, ice skating, traveling whenever she can and reading as much as possible. She looks forward to working with students and helping them achieve their dreams at Lewis.

Emily Grimm
Emily Grimm
Freshman Admission Counselor
grimmem@lewisu.edu

Emily is a 2013 Lewis University alumna and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry. During her undergraduate years, she worked as a Navigator (student ambassador), a student worker for the Office of Admission, and as an Orientation Group Leader. It was through these positions that she found her passion for Lewis, and returned to help students explore the many different opportunities that a higher education holds for them.

In her free time, Emily enjoys running, listening to music, and spending time with friends and family. On game days, you can always catch her in a jersey for the Blackhawks or the Bears. She is extremely excited to return to Lewis and is looking forward to assisting students as they begin their college search.

Caleigh O'Connell
Caleigh O'Connell
Freshman Admission Counselor
oconneca@lewisu.edu

Caleigh graduated from Elmhurst College with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. While attending Elmhurst, she worked as a student ambassador, Orientation Student Leader, and Peer advisor.  It was through her experiences in each of these positions that she found a passion for helping students begin their college journey and be a friendly face on campus.

In her free time Caleigh enjoys spending time with her family and friends as well as her dog, Charlie. She is very excited to begin working with incoming students and families to help make their Lewis experience a positive one.

Haleigh Rajnic

Haleigh Rajnic
Freshman Admission Counselor
rajnicha@lewisu.edu

Haleigh graduated from North Central College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Marketing. As a student at North Central, she became involved in a variety of areas of campus life including: Admissions, Orientation, and Student Activities. The great experiences that she had working and being involved as a student, led her to pursue a position as an admission counselor. Haleigh really enjoys getting to know the students/families she works with and discovering what they hope to get out of their college experience.

In her free time, Haleigh enjoys reading a good book, spending time with family and friends, and catching up on her favorite TV shows/movies. She is also learning to play the ukulele! Haleigh is excited to be a part of the Lewis community and to assist students through the college search process to find their best fit.

Chris Stevens
Chris Stevens
Freshman Admission Counselor / Student Ambassador Coordinator
stevench@lewisu.edu

Chris is a 2012 alumnus of Lewis University where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal/Social Justice and a minor in Finance. He developed his passion for college admission counseling while he served as a student worker in the Office of Admission, a Student Ambassador (Navigator), an Orientation Group Leader and as a Student Representative for the University Policy & Budgetary Review Advisory Council. Chris has returned to Lewis to help prospective students explore the opportunities Lewis has to offer them.

In his free time, Chris enjoys listening to Country music (specifically Eric Church), working out, camping and fishing. He is an avid Chicago Cubs and Blackhawks fan. Chris is very excited to rejoin the Lewis Community and is looking forward to working with students. He currently resides in Chicago.

Graduate Assistants

Ashley Peck
Megan Marcello
marcelme@lewisu.edu

Megan graduated from Illinois State University with a B.S. in Psychology. She then worked at W.W. Grainger, Inc. for 7 years in the Learning and Development department. Megan recently left her job to pursue a Master's Degree in School Counseling at Lewis University. She is very excited to help future Lewis students and families navigate their way through the admission process.

Megan currently lives in Lombard. In her free time, Megan's favorite thing to do is spend time with her niece and nephew. She also enjoys working out, cooking, and spending time in Chicago.

Ashley Peck
Ashley Peck
peckas@lewisu.edu

Ashley graduated from the University of Iowa in 2014 with a Bachelor’s in Communication Sciences and Disorders and a minor in Psychology.  She recently began to pursue her Master’s Degree in School Counseling at Lewis University.  She is very excited to work with future Flyers and their families as they work their way through the admission process.

Ashley currently lives in Oswego.  During her free time, she enjoys spending time with her friends and family, as well as running, reading and spending time outside.