Skip to main content

Office of Student Retention Staff

Leadership and Support

Kristin Daiber Staff Photo


Kristin Daiber

Director of Student Retention

Contact Info: or 828.227.7171
Hometown: Hershey, PA
Joined WCU: July 2021
Undergraduate Institution: Quinnipiac Univeristy- B.S. in Marketing
Graduate Institution: Bowling Green State University- MA in College Student Personnel; Western Governors University- MBA

Favorite Quote: "I have discovered the secret that after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. I have taken a moment to rest, to steal a view of the glorious vistas that surrounds me, to look back on the distance I have come." Nelson Mandela, A Long Walk to Freedom

Elinda Forster


Elinda Forster

Administrative Support Specialist

Contact Info: 828.227.3895 or
Hometown: Hong Kong
Joined WCU: 2020
Undergraduate Institution: Western Carolina University
Hobbies: Travel and learn their culture. Read for new knowledge. Enjoy time with family and friends.

Favorite quote:
"You will face many defeats in life, but never let yourself be defeated." -Maya Angelou 

Retention Advisor

Melissa Day Staff Photo


Melissa Day

Retention Advisor

Contact Info: or 828.227.2956
Hometown: Salisbury, NC
Joined WCU: 2011 as a college freshman; October 2018 as a staff member.
Undergraduate Institution: Western Carolina Univeristy- B.S. in Communication; Minor in Marketing 
Graduate Institution: Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary- MA in Religion; MA in Christian Ministries

Favorite Quote: "You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." Christopher Robin


Student Transitions

Caroline LeBoeuf


Caroline LeBoeuf

Assistant Director of Student Retention, Student Transitions Coordinator

Contact Info: 828.227.2786 or

Hometown: Charleston, SC

Joined WCU: March 2019

Undergraduate Institution: Winthrop University

Graduate Institution: Citadel, Military College of South Carolina

Favorite Quote: "In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun." - Mary Poppins


Mentoring and Persistence to Success

Anita Puerto


Anita Puerto

Associate Director of Retention, MAPS Coordinator

Contact Info: or 828.227.3764

Hometown: Richmond, VA

Joined WCU: 2015 (was an intern in 2014)

Undergraduate Institution: Radford University

Graduate Institution: Virginia Commonwealth University

Favorite Quote: “A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.” – Jackie Robinson

Picture of Carson Williams, MAPS Advisor.


Carson Williams

Senior MAPS Advisor/ASP Coordinator

Contact Info: or 828.227.7123
Hometown: Hickory, NC
Joined WCU: 2009 as an undergraduate student, but most recently in June 2021.
Undergraduate Degree: Western Carolina Univeristy- BSEd in Music Education and BM in Instrumental Music 
Graduate Degree: Western Carolina University- MEd in Higher Education Student Affairs 

Hobbies: Letterboxing, Community Band, and taking care of my houseplants

Kayla Payne


Kayla Payne

Academic Advisor

Contact Info: or 828.227.2217

Hometown: Mount Airy, NC 

Joined WCU: 2011 as a college freshman; 2022 as an Academic Advisor

Undergraduate Institution: Western Carolina University- BS in History; BSEd in Social Sciences 

Graduate Institution: Western Carolina University- MAEd in Comprehensive Education/Social Sciences 

Favorite Quote: "Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can." -Arthur Ashe


Gwyn Howard photo


Gwyn Howard

Graduate Assistant

Contact Info: 828-227-7127 or 
Hometown: Cleveland, Ohio 
Joined WCU: September 2021 
Undergraduate Institution: Ohio University 
Graduate Institution: Western Carolina University 
Hobbies: Outdoors, playing with my rescue dog, reading, music

Why did I become a Graduate Assistant?  
The Mission of the MAPS office resonates with my educational philosophy and I enjoy mentoring students and celebrating their successes. This position allows me to learn and grow as a professional as I complete my M. Ed. In Higher Education Student Affairs 

Favorite Quote: “Don’t fear death, fear the unlived life”- anonymous


Office of Web Services