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Meet the CCD Staff


Nicole Van Den Heuvel 
Nicole Van Den Heuvel, a Rice alumna, is the Director for the Center for Career Development (CCD) and brings over twenty years of industry experience.  Prior to assuming the current Director role, she worked at Rice's Jones Graduate School of Business as Associate Director of Career Management, counseling and advising MBA students on career planning and development.  She has an extensive business background in public, private and not-for-profit organizations having worked for the Chubb Group of Insurance Companies for over 14 years in Houston, Washington, D.C. and Montreal, Canada.  She also brings across-the-board expertise in career counseling, leadership training, recruiting, and human resources.  Nicole also brings an international perspective to CCD as she speaks French, Spanish, and German and has lived throughout Europe.  She continues to actively contribute to the Houston and Rice alumni community through her community service and fund raising activities.  


Jacqueline Hing MS, LPC • Associate Director, Career Development and Programming
Jacqueline Hing oversees the development of the center's programs related to career decision-making and programming. She advises students on their post graduate plans through individual sessions, and conducts presentations aimed at strengthening a student’s professional communication skills. Additionally, Hing teaches HUMA 212: Career and Life Options, and co-teaches the Best Fit class, offered by the Glasscock School of Continuing Studies, with Louma Ghandour. Hing joined Rice in 1993 from the Center for Counseling in Houston, where she was a licensed therapist specializing in family and women's issues. Because of her training and expertise in the use of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and the FIRO-B, she has also conducted workshops on communication and team-building for companies and professional groups. Hing is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Texas. She holds a bachelor's degree in English, a master's degree in Guidance and Counseling from California State University, Los Angeles, and is a member of the American Counselor's Association and National Association for Colleges and Employers.
Tiffany Lane M.Ed., LPC • Assistant Director, Career Development    
Tiffany Lane develops and implements instructional programming related to post-graduate planning. She provides individual counseling and assessment interpretation to assist Rice undergraduates and graduate students in addition to recent alumni in making informed career decisions and to prepare them for professional advancement. She also heads the Peer Career Advisors (PCA’s) program, which identifies student leaders with an interest in career development. The PCA’s act as liaisons to for the CCD to the residential colleges and the rest of the Rice campus. Lane transitioned to the CCD in 2009 from the Career Management Center at the Jones Graduate School of Business. In addition, she previously interned with the Career Services office at Texas State University as a graduate career advisor where she provided career exploration and guidance to undergraduates, graduate students, and alumni. Lane has a bachelor's degree in Psychology and a master's degree in Counselor Education with an emphasis in higher education, both from the University of Texas at Austin and is currently a Licensed Professional Counselor.
Nancy Wendlandt M.Ed., LPC • Assistant Director, Career Development
Nancy Wendlandt develops and implements instructional programming related to post-graduate planning. She provides individual counseling and assessment interpretation to assist Rice students and alumni in making informed career decisions and to prepare them for professional advancement. Additionally, Wendlandt is the instructor for HUMA 295: Exploring Careers Through An Internship and teaches HUMA 212: Career and Life Options. She also coordinates special sessions meant to meet the needs of graduate and post-doctoral students. Wendlandt joined Rice in 2009 from The University of Texas at Austin, where she was a career counselor intern with the Career Exploration Center. She also served as a graduate research assistant, contributing to studies assessing predictors of life and work satisfaction among individuals in non-traditional career roles. In addition, Wendlandt has conducted and published her own research addressing challenges inherent in the college to work transition and developed a theoretical framework to guide effective interventions for university career centers. Wendlandt holds a bachelor's degree in Psychology and Neurobiology from the University of Wisconsin and a master's degree in Educational Psychology with a concentration in higher education from The University of Texas at Austin. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Texas.


Jessica Campbell • Associate Director for Employer Relations
Jessica Campbell oversees the employer relations program for the Center for Career Development (CCD). Jessica helps employers develop recruiting strategies and discover the most effective ways to connect with Rice students. Jessica joined the CCD staff in 2011 after four years of managing the employer relations program at the University of Houston. Prior to that role, Jessica spent two years as an Employment Counselor with Houston Works USA. Jessica holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Houston and is a member of the National Association for Colleges and Employers and the Southern Association for Colleges and Employers. Jessica has also served in various leadership roles for the Houston Area Consortium of Career Centers.
Michelle Passo MA • Assistant Director, Employer Relations and Communications
Michelle works with the Employer Relations team to help facilitate relationships with existing employers, prospective employers and alumni to increase internship and employment opportunities for students and works with the Counseling Team to assist students in using CCD's career resources and works one-on-one with students to develop and refine interviewing skills. She also serves as an administrator of the career services' technology systems, including developing media content for the website.  Passo joined Rice in 2008 from the University of Iowa, where she was a graduate teaching assistant for the Department of Communication Studies. Previously, she worked as adjunct faculty at El Centro Community College in Dallas, Texas. Two of Passo's papers on women, sports, and the media have been presented at professional conferences. Passo brings several years of professional experience to Rice. Through the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences she served as a programming intern at USA Network, where she assisted in the development of new shows. Prior to that role, Passo spent four years with the National Basketball Association (NBA), where she researched and assisted in the production of stories airing on ABC and NBA TV. She holds a master's degree in Cinema-Television from Southern Methodist University and a bachelor's degree in Telecommunications from Indiana University.
 Alexis_garcia Alexis Garcia • Communications & Events Coordinator
Alexis Garcia is responsible for coordinating the communications and marketing efforts of the center, as well as organizing various recruiting events. She plans, writes and edits information and collateral materials regarding the CCD’s mission, services and resources to students, alumni, employers and the Rice community. Garcia also maintains the center’s social media initiatives, website and other branded marketing campaigns.  Garcia joined Rice in 2012 from the Carbonara Group, a public relations group in Houston. Previously, she held intern positions in public relations with The Ruiz Financial Group and Texas State University-San Marcos Alumni Association. Garcia earned a Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations from Texas State University-San Marcos in 2011.
Katy Portell   Katy Portell • Recruiting Coordinator & Alumni Liaison
Katy Portell helps prospective employers connect with Rice students by coordinating recruiting visits and interview schedules.  She is on the development team for the Rice mentor network and maintains the OWL Mentor Network LinkedIn group.  Portell also acts as the liaison between the Center for Career Development and Alumni Affairs, developing opportunities for Rice Alumni to connect with current students and share their valuable professional experience and advice.  Additionally, Portell is working to develop web-based career services content for Rice Alumni to access nationally and is the contact person for employers who are interested in hiring Rice Alumni.  Portell joined Rice in 2012 after graduating Magna Cum Laude from the University of Portland with a Bachelor of Science in Organizational Communication.


Christine Hebert • Department Coordinator
Christine Hebert manages the administrative and office operations of the CCD, providing oversight for financial processes. In addition, she coordinates the student employee program. Hebert joined Rice in 1997. Before coming to Rice, she served as an office manager in the International Student and Scholars Services Office and as business administrator for the Computer Science Department at the University of Houston. She served in a similar capacity for the Department of Electrical Engineering at the University of Southern California prior to coming to Houston. Hebert holds a bachelor's degree from the University of the Philippines, Quezon City.