Career Center Colleagues

The Career Services Team volunteered for Global Day of Service 2014 at a local nonprofit bakery, the Cookie Cart, which hires and trains urban youth. Left to right are: Lisa Cook, Dina Bergren, Denise Pranke, Nicolle Skalski, and Andrea Obrycki.

The Career Services Team volunteered at a local nonprofit bakery, the Cookie Cart, which hires and trains urban youth. Left to right are: Lisa Cook, Angie Lira, Denise Pranke, Nicolle Skalski, and Dina Bergren.

Lisa Cook, Senior Director of Career Services

Lisa Cook, J.D., M.Ed., oversees the Career Services Center staff, operations and strategic direction.  She grew up in Washington, DC and lived in five states before moving to Minnesota in 2007.  She has several years of experience practicing law and more than 20  years of career development experience in higher education, the private sector, and federal and state government.  She holds a law degree, a master’s degree in Education/Counseling and Development and a bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies.  Her career includes serving as director of career services at three higher education institutions as well as delivering career counseling and training at the US Department of Labor and managing two intern programs at the US Department of Interior.

Lisa’s focus areas include mid-life career transition, networking strategies for introverts, and connecting with faculty, students and alumni for our career webinars. In her free time, she serves on her city’s Parks, Recreation and Environment Commission, volunteers for Meal on Wheels, and runs a venture to promote social wellness through facilitating meaningful social connections.

Dina Bergren, Associate Director of Career Services

Dina Bergren, M.A., was born in Minsk, Belarus, and immigrated to the United States as a young child. She grew up in Minnesota and attended college in Iowa. After college, she completed a master’s degree in human resource development while also working as a college recruiter, career advisor, and assistant director of education. She provided career advising to artists at a non-profit arts organization and received the Graduate Student of the Year Award from the Minnesota Career Development Association in 2003. After earning her master’s degree, Dina started her own business partnering with consultants on a multitude of training and career development projects, until she joined Walden University in 2006.

Dina is committed to helping Walden students and alumni acquire skills to effectively manage their careers. In addition to advising students on career-related topics, Dina serves as Career Services’ technology specialist, manages the Career Services Center website, and collaborates on interdepartmental committees. She designs and delivers workshops, webinars, and videos; and presents at state and national conferences.

Angie Lira, Senior Career Services Advisor

Angie Lira, M.S., has over 10 years of experience in the education field in the U.S. and Japan. Her experience spans several functional areas of the college environment including Admissions, Financial Aid, Academic Advising and Career Services, allowing her to bring a holistic view to the student experience. She holds a master’s degree in Higher and Post-Secondary Education, a bachelor’s degree in Communications, and an associate’s degree in Web Design and Interactive Media. In addition to holding advising appointments and contributing to webinars, Angie runs the Career Services Center’s social media channels, coordinates student communications and provides website support. Angie also serves as the Staff Advisor for Walden University’s chapter of the Golden Key International Honour Society.

Angie’s focus areas include digital branding, identifying career opportunities, and informational interviewing. She enjoys travel, volunteering for social change causes and developing her technology skills.

Denise Pranke, Career Services Advisor

Denise Pranke, M.Ed., attended the University of Minnesota for both her Master’s degree in Adult Education and her undergraduate degree in Elected Studies. She has over 20 years of experience in public, private, and community-based higher education as a career advisor, adjunct instructor of mathematics, adult education program coordinator, curriculum developer, and academic advisor. She is committed to guiding Walden students and alumni on developing effective career management strategies. In addition to holding advising appointments and contributing to webinars, she tracks metrics and trends for the Walden Career Services team to support our continuous improvement efforts. She is also an active member of the Minnesota Career Development Association.

Denise’s areas of interest/expertise include: mid-life career management strategies, resume and curriculum reviews, and interviewing skills.

Nicolle Skalski, Senior Career Services Advisor

Nicolle Skalski, M.M., is a bilingual communications and career development professional with over 10 years of combined teaching, international education and career development experience in diverse educational settings in the US and Mexico. She provides holistic career advice to Walden students at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree levels. In addition to her advising role, she serves as the center’s webinar coordinator and marketing communications lead, assisting with the communications and promotion of numerous Career Services Center offerings, webinars, marketing materials and special events. She has served as the Career Services representative and chair on an interdepartmental Marketing and Social Media Working Group.

Nicolle co-presented professional conference breakout sessions at the 2011 and 2013 annual MCDA conferences and at the 2012 NCDA Global Conference in Atlanta. Nicolle is fluent in Spanish and holds a Master in Management from Southern Oregon University and a BA in Journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her career development specialties include: professional branding, LinkedIn, and resume development.


4 thoughts on “Career Center Colleagues

  1. Hello,
    My name is Maria Gresham, I would like to know what steps do I need to take to have someone review my resume. I have submitted my resume to other organizations within the government; however, my respond back from is qualify but not highly qualified. I know that I am qualified for the positions I apply for; however, I am not sure if I am using the wrong words in my resume. Can someone assist me in getting my resume on the right track? I would like to start submitting my resume to private and nonprivate employers, but I need guidance.

    Maria Gresham

    • Maria, Please log on to our website at: and make an appointment to meet with a Career Services Advisor who will assist you with your resume. I would also suggest using our resume development system – OptimalResume. Hope this is helpful.
      Lisa Cook

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