Meet Our Team

Aliya Bhimani | Director

Hi, I’m Aliya! I am originally from College Station, Texas. I have a BS in Communication Studies from The University of Texas at Austin and an MA in Education and Human Development from The George Washington University (GW). I spent almost a decade in Washington, DC working for an international development agency and in academic advising at GW. I like to travel, and I love tennis—playing and watching!

Liaison College: Will Rice

Email: aliyab@rice.edu

Christine Martinez | Associate Director

Hello, my name is Christine! I’m originally from the beautiful island of Guam! I have a BA in Psychology from the University of Texas Pan American and an MEd in Administration and Supervision in Higher Education from the University of Houston. For the past decade, I have worked in academic advising, recruitment, and professional school admissions. I enjoy travel, baking, rooting for the Houston Texans and spending time with my husband, son, and two dogs.

Liaison Colleges: Baker, Sid Rich

Email: cmartinez@rice.edu

Bradley Blunt | Assistant Director

My name is Brad Blunt, and I am on my third “tour of duty” at Rice, having previously served as Director of Admissions for The Shepherd School of Music. I grew up in the Chicago suburbs and attended college in Iowa, and graduate school in Ohio. Both my degrees are in vocal performance. I am a music and theater fan (and slight snob), but probably get most worked up about the Chicago Cubs. I have a son and a daughter that I also dedicate a lot of his time too, while also serving as an RA at McMurtry.

Liaison Colleges: Duncan, McMurtry

Email: bblunt@rice.edu

Tamara Cobb | Assistant Director

Hello, my name is Tamara. I have both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Sociology, and advised for 10 years at the main campus of the University of Houston before joining the team here at Rice. My advising scope covers a wide spectrum of majors and minors. I also worked extensively with undecided students and have served on scholarship committees and been instrumental in the implementation of several advising policies and procedures over my career. I stay busy with my three young daughters but also love to travel and read biographies and medical narratives in my free time.

Liaison Colleges: Hanszen, Wiess

Email: tamaracobb@rice.edu

Mandi Cutchins | Assistant Director

Hello, my name is Mandi Cutchins, and I graduated from The Ohio State University with a BS in Human Development and Family Studies and received my master’s degree in Higher Education Administration from the University of Akron. I most recently hail from The University of Florida in Gainesville, FL where I worked very closely with pre-health students. I am an obnoxious Ohio State Buckeyes fan, and football season is my favorite time of year. My favorite part of advising is working with students throughout their time in college and seeing how far they go on their academic journey.

Liaison Colleges: Brown, Jones

Email: mcutchins@rice.edu

John Fierst | Assistant Director

Hi, I’m John Fierst, and I am originally from southwest Indiana and received my BA in biology from Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). I recently completed the Student Affairs Administration in Higher Education program at Texas A&M University and graduated with my MS in May of 2017. My experience includes working with co-curricular internships, learning communities, and new student programs. I love to cook, travel to new places both in the US and abroad, and now explore my new home of Houston!

Liaison Colleges: Lovett, Martel

Email: john.fierst@rice.edu

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