College of Arts and Sciences Advising office announces new leadership

Appalachian State University’s College of Arts and Sciences announces new leadership of the College Advising and Support Services Hub (CASSH) office. Diana J. Nelson has been named Director of the CASSH office housed under the college dean’s office and will begin her new role Monday, March 23, 2020. The CASSH office is made up of professional advisors and records specialists who serve current and prospective students, as well as faculty and staff in the college.

“We are so lucky to find someone who is already very knowledgeable about the college and has worked closely with our many departments over the years. Diana has experience in both the record-keeping and advising areas, as well as supervisory experience, so I know she can step right in and do an amazing job,” said Neva J. Specht, dean, College of Arts and Sciences.

The CASSH office’s responsibilities vary but include graduation checks, course shortages, and faculty advising support. The size of the student body within the college continues to grow, reaching over 6,100 students in the 2018-19 academic year, yet students receive hands-on, personal attention as they navigate their educational path in the college.

Nelson, from Jonesborough, Tennessee, earned a B.S. in Psychology with a concentration in Human Services and a minor in Criminal Justice in 2007 and a M.A. in Higher Education with a concentration in Adult and Developmental Education in 2019 both from Appalachian State University.

She previously served in the College CASSH office for nine years as an administrative support specialist in records from 2010-18 and as the administrative support specialist supervisor from January - September of 2019 before taking on a position as academic advisor in the Beaver College of Health Sciences Office of Advising and Academic Support.

She also serves as a campus transfer student mentor working closely with transfer students to help them throughout their transition and college experience at Appalachian through leadership,  mentorship and service learning. 

“I hope to continue to provide dedicated support for students, faculty and staff in the College of Arts and Sciences. I feel that the CASSH team already excels in this area, so it will be a matter of maintaining that momentum, developing and implementing policies and procedures that coincide with the changing academic climate and continuing to provide an open and approachable atmosphere for our students, faculty and staff,” said Nelson. 


About the College of Arts and Sciences
The College of Arts and Sciences is home to 16 academic departments, one stand-alone academic program, two centers and one residential college. These units span the humanities and the social, mathematical and natural sciences. The College of Arts and Sciences aims to develop a distinctive identity built upon our university's strengths, traditions and unique location. The college’s values lie not only in service to the university and local community, but through inspiring, training, educating and sustaining the development of its students as global citizens. There are approximately 6,100 student majors in the college. As the college is also largely responsible for implementing Appalachian's general education curriculum, it is heavily involved in the education of all students at the university, including those pursuing majors in other colleges. Learn more at

BY Ellen Gwin Burnette
March 16, 2020

Diana J. Nelson has been named Director of the  College of Arts and Sciences, College Advising and Support Services Hub (CASSH) office. Photo by University Communications.
Published: Mar 16, 2020 1:33pm