California

Yvonne Berumen

Yvonne Berumen
Vice President for Admission & Financial Aid

Yvonne grew up in Pico Rivera, California where she attended El Rancho High School.  A Pitzer alumna from the Class of 1997, Yvonne received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Sociology.  In 2005, she earned her Master’s in Higher Education with an emphasis in Quantitative Analysis. Yvonne has over 19 years of experience in higher education and college counseling.  Prior to returning to Pitzer, she was the Vice President of Scholarships and Academic Support for the Hispanic Scholarship Fund where she managed HSF’s strategic outreach to students, parents and educational constituents, which included developing content that promoted college attainment and academic success. She was co-architect of a $417 million grant to establish The Gates Scholarship, a next generation scholarship that would recruit, retain and support the best and brightest underrepresented students through their bachelor’s degree. In her spare time, Yvonne enjoys staying active through dance and hikes with her dogs.

Recruitment and application reading territories: LA County Private Schools, Arizona, New Mexico, and International (Asia – all but China, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Vietnam)

Santiago YbarraSantiago Ybarra
Director of Admission

Santiago was raised in California’s central coast. After graduating from Watsonville High School he attended Pomona College, earned a degree in psychology and found himself drawn to college admissions. While in college he interned for the Minority Student Action Program and worked as a Senior Interviewer. He was also involved in the 5-College ballroom dance team and volunteered at a local elementary school. He enjoys road trips to national parks, camping, biking and spending time with his dogs. Since joining Pitzer’s internationally-minded community in 2010, Santiago has been inspired to visit a greater variety of international locales.

Recruitment and application reading territories: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New York (all but Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, Staten Island), Rhode Island, Vermont, U.S. Territories (Guam, Puerto Rico, America Samoa), California (Counties: Marin, Orange, Sonoma) and International (Latin America and the Caribbean)

Owen WolfOwen Wolf
Associate Director of Admission

Owen grew up in Claremont, California. After graduating from Claremont High School, Owen attended Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, where he majored in English and minored in Medieval and Renaissance Studies. After serving as an admissions counselor at Pitzer for one year, Owen spent six years at the California Institute of Technology, where he worked as an event planner, athletics liaison and marketing coordinator for the Undergraduate Admissions Office. A huge film buff, Owen has a particular fondness for documentaries. A minor league baseball and hockey fan, Owen enjoys racquetball, hiking on the Claremont Wilderness Trail, hanging out in Los Angeles and going to the movies with his wife.

Recruitment and application reading territories: Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Washington, Wyoming, California (Counties: Monterey, San Benito, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, Ventura) and International (Canada, China)

Mattie RossMattie Ross ’12
Assistant Director of Admission

Mattie grew up in Maui, Hawaii and attended King Kekaulike High School. She is a Pitzer alumna of the Class of 2012 and earned her degree in English and World Literature with an emphasis on creative writing, and minored in Spanish. While studying at Pitzer, she worked as a student tour guide and was a Resident Assistant for three years. She also studied abroad in León, Spain where she taught English to children. One of her most memorable accomplishments at Pitzer was educating low-income preschoolers as a Jumpstart Corps Member. In her spare time, Mattie enjoys watching Korean dramas, discussing The Walking Dead, cuddling cats, and eating sushi. She is currently pursuing her MA in Higher Education at Claremont Graduate University.

Recruitment and application reading territories: Alaska, New York (Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, Staten Island), California (Counties: Fresno, Imperial, Inyo, Kern, Kings, Madera, Merced, Mono, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, Stanislaus, Tulare, Tuolumne) and International (Africa, East Asia, Europe)

Alex-CromidasAlex Cromidas ’15
Admission Counselor

Alex grew up in San Diego, California, where he remained until making the decision to apply to Pitzer College his senior year of high school. Alex joined the Pitzer community in the fall of 2011, and, over the course of the next four years, tried his best to take full advantage of the opportunities offered by the school. Alex majored in sociology, taking more than a dozen classes in the subject since his first year, but in reality probably spent the majority of his time on campus working. Whether as a Resident Assistant, a sound technician, an Office of Admission visit coordinator and interviewer, a member of the student senate, or as a KSPC volunteer, Alex was heavily invested in campus life. It was only natural to him that he join up with Pitzer professionally immediately after graduating in 2015! Back when he was a student, Alex spent his free time either performing on stage as a member of the Pomona College Band, theatre department, and Sea Chanty and Maritime Music Ensemble, or helping to run Pitzer’s BoXcar club with his closest friends. He loves being outdoors, and considers any distance within a ten mile radius a “walkable” one.  Alex is really excited to keep helping current and prospective Pitzer students out in the future, whether it’s in the application process, or beyond!

Recruitment and application reading territories: Colorado, Illinois, Nevada, Oregon, California (Los Angeles County: East- Pomona Valley, East San Gabriel Valley, West San Gabriel Valley)

Dwayne-OkpaiseDwayne Okpaise
Admission Counselor

Dwayne grew up in Simi Valley, California where he attended Santa Susana High School, and is happy to return home to Southern California. Dwayne earned his degree in art history from Reed College in Portland, Oregon. While a student at Reed, he spent a semester abroad in Buenos Aires, Argentina and wrote his thesis on the relation between dictatorship and performance art in that country. In addition to working in the Admission Office at Reed, Dwayne was involved with the Multicultural Resource Center and student government. In his free time, Dwayne enjoys spending entire days at museums and using public transit to get around Los Angeles (don’t believe the rumors, LA has public transit!).

Recruitment and application reading territories: Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, California (Counties: Alameda, Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, Colusa, Contra Costa, Del Norte, El Dorado, Glenn, Humboldt, Lake, Lassen, Mariposa, Mendocino, Modoc, Napa, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Shasta, Sierra, Siskiyou, Solano, Sutter, Tehama, Trinity, Yolo, Yuba, East- Northeast Los Angeles, San Fernando Valley, Santa Clarita)

JR-RamseyJR Ramsey
Admission Counselor

Raised on cornbread and black eyed peas, JR grew up in the small town of Ruston, Louisiana. At 18 he left to study New Media Communication at Centenary College of Louisiana in Shreveport. While a student, he spent most of his time acting as an assistant debate coach at a local high school where he coached students at competitions across the nation. Since graduating, he has worked both in the education and marketing fields before moving cross country to attend graduate school at the University of Southern California. He enjoys paddle boarding and playing Texas Hold’em (sadly though, not at the same time).

Recruitment and application reading territories: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, Texas, California (Los Angeles County: Beach Cities, Central Los Angeles, Downtown Los Angeles, Gateway Cities, Los Angeles Harbor Region, Mid-Wilshire, Palos Verdes Peninsula, South Los Angeles, Southeast Los Angeles, Southwest/South Bay, Westside)

Katie ShepherdKatie Shepherd
Admission Counselor

Hailing from Rancho Cucamonga, California, Katie graduated from Harvey Mudd College (Pitzer’s next door neighbor!) with a degree in Engineering. While at HMC she became an Admissions Senior Intern and tour guide, led her dorm as a Resident Assistant, entertained students as a student activities coordinator, and played percussion in the orchestra. Some of Katie’s favorite memories from studying abroad in Australia were performing in a Battle of the Bands competition and making friends with the kangaroos. In her spare time, Katie enjoys taking photos, learning songs on the guitar, watching movies with her sister, and laughing. She is enthusiastic to continue her journey in Claremont with the amazing Pitzer Admissions team.

Recruitment and application reading territories: Georgia, Hawaii, Kentucky, Minnesota, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Wisconsin, California (Counties: San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara) and International (Oceania)

Page last updated on September 20, 2016