Meet the Counselors

Keith Ahee
Assistant Director
(936) 294-4689 –

Keith was born and raised in The Woodlands, Texas. He first attended Lone Star College-Montgomery before transferring to Sam Houston State University in the spring of 2007. He's a first generation college student and completed a Bachelor's of Science in Criminal Justice in August 2010. While an undergraduate student at SHSU, Keith worked for the Office of Undergraduate Admissions as one of the two Lead Student Assistants and was a member of the American Cancer Society’s Colleges Against Cancer. During his free time Keith spends most of his free time running, going to the gym and working towards his Masters of Arts in Higher Education Administration. He strongly encourages future Bearkats to get involved, have fun, and stay focused. Eat 'Em Up Kats!


April Cano
Dallas/Fort Worth Region
(832) 779-2266 –

Born in San Antonio and raised in Mesquite, Texas, April graduated from Mesquite High School in 2005. She attended Eastfield Community College in Dallas for one year and then transferred to Sam Houston State to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice with a minor in Psychology. While at SHSU, April was a member and leader in several student organizations including Lambda Alpha Epsilon-Criminal Justice Academic Fraternity. April also worked on campus for Residence Life and played intramural sports. April graduated as a Bearkat in May 2009 and went home to work in Dallas, but her heart remained at SHSU. She returned to Huntsville in early 2012 to serve as a Transfer Admissions Counselor and has now transitioned into the Regional Counselor position in the Dallas/Fort Worth region. She is also pursuing her master’s degree in Higher Education Administration. April’s pride in the orange and white shines through to each student she meets. She loves SHSU and what it stands for, and she is anxious to share this passion with others!

Matthew Chastine
Transfer Students
(936) 294-4842 –

Born in Huntsville and raised in the small town of Mineral Wells, Matt is the third in his family to graduate from Sam Houston State University. He is a 2011 graduate with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a minor in Communications. He decided to continue his education by completing his Masters of Business Administration in 2012. He enjoys playing and talking about almost every sport and also enjoys discussing philosophy, religion, and politics. He looks forward to sharing his knowledge and love for Sam Houston State University with all future prospective students!

Clair Collins
South East Texas/Gulf Coast Region
(936) 294-2224 –

Raised in Huntsville, Clair completed her Bachelor’s in English and a minor in Spanish at SHSU in 2010.  While a student at Sam Houston, Clair served as a Resident Advisor, Freshman Orientation Leader, Bearkat Camp Counselor, and held various other positions in clubs and organizations around campus.  Clair is excited to share her love of everything SHSU and Huntsville with incoming students. She encourages all incoming students to go out and experience everything Sam Houston and Huntsville has to offer.

Salvador Favela
South Texas Region
(936) 294-1829 –

Raised in Huntsville, Salvador is familiar with the Bearkat family and the orange spirit.  Salvador is a first-generation college graduate and started his studies at Brigham Young University-Idaho. He then continued his education at University of Texas at Austin where he graduated with a Bachelor’s in Political Science.  He truly enjoys running in the rain, learning and discussing geopolitics, immigration, sociology and more.  Salvador’s love for education drives him to seek higher education for himself and others.  As the South Texas representative and honorary Bearkat, he looks forward to sharing his zeal for education with everyone.  Eat 'Em Up Kats!


Shawn Ramsey
South Houston Region
(936) 931-7478 –

Coming from The Woodlands, TX, Shawn is a 2010 graduate of Sam Houston State University. There he studied Mass Communications with an emphasis in Journalism, entering the workforce soon after as a editor and sports writer for FOX Sports. A passion for higher education drove Shawn to pursue a return to Sam Houston State University, but this time as a member of the Undergraduate Admissions staff as a regional admissions counselor. Talk to him about sports, music, or life in general! With a love for Sam Houston State University as an alumni, Shawn is wanting to use his knowledge to help mold future Bearkats!

Dustin Nieto
San Antonio Region
(936) 228-9837 –

Born and raised in San Antonio, Texas, Dustin graduated from St. Gerard catholic high school in 2006. He attended Palo Alto Community College in San Antonio for two years and graduate with associates in psychology and criminal justice. He then transferred to Sam Houston State to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice and a bachelor’s degree in Psychology. While at SHSU, Dustin was a member of Lambda Alpha Epsilon-Criminal Justice Academic Fraternity and Student Alumni Association. Dustin graduated in August 2012, he enjoys playing poker and making people smile. He wants to help students pursue their academic goals and achieve success and is confident that SHSU will help them reach their full potential.

Haley Riley
North Houston Region
(936) 931-8425 –

Haley was born and raised in Huntsville. She attended Huntsville High School and graduated in 2009. She then attended Sam Houston State University and earned her Bachelors of Business Administration in Marketing in May of 2013. While at Sam Houston, she worked at Kampus Korner Bookstore and volunteered at various organizations in Huntsville. Haley hopes that all students take advantage of all opportunities that Sam Houston has to offer. Eat 'Em Up Kats!


Heidie Hegman
Austin/Central Texas Region
(936) 294-4073 –

Born and raised in Baytown, TX, Heidie graduated from Ross S. Sterling High School in 2006. Continued her education at Lee College, then transferred to Sam Houston State and obtained her degree in Mass Communications emphasis in Public Relations in August 2010. Heidie is a second generation bearkat, also the sixth member of her family in the same generation to graduate from Sam Houston. While attending Sam Houston Heidie worked at the Barnes and Noble Campus bookstore, was elected advertising and social media chair for the Public Relations Student Society of America Sam Houston Chapter, participated in Passport to Sam with the Episcopal Student Center (where she was an active member) and hosted a radio show for 90.5 The Kat. Heidie's passion is to guide, connect and communicate with any future and current Bearkats. She wants to share her tradition, honor and pride of being a Bearkat! Heidie always strives to be honorable like the word inscribed on every Sam Houston Class Ring. Eat 'Em Up Kats!

Gabriel Orphe
Transfer Students
(936) 202-5008 –

Gabe hails from Missouri City, Texas. He was born in Houston and his family relocated throughout Florida, Louisiana, New York, and back to Texas. Gabriel Orphé is a first-generation college graduate, class of 2012. While an undergraduate at Sam Houston, Gabe served as a lead tutor at the Writing Center and mentored 1st year students on personal and educational growth. He has obtained his Bachelor’s degree in History with a minor in Secondary Education. He is currently in pursuit of his Master’s degree in Curriculum & Instruction with a minor in Administration, as well as his PHR certification. Gabriel genuinely enjoys helping others succeed and overcoming the odds. In his spare time, he enjoys laughing, reading, listening to music, and playing dominos; as well as, discussing religions, any sport, and humanity. Gabe is thrilled to show students that he bleeds ORANGE & BLUE. Eat 'Em Up Kats!


Amber Harrison
East Texas Region
(936) 294-3150 –

Raised in Madisonville, Amber graduated from Madisonville High School and soon after moved to Lovelady, Tx where she found her lifelong home. She graduated from SHSU in August 2014 as a first generation college graduate with a Bachelor’s in Business Administration. She is also a professional photographer and loves getting to meet new people and tell their story through images. Amber’s pride for Sam Houston runs deep and she strives to live by the campus motto "The Measure of a Life is its Service". She has a strong desire to help future and current Bearkats find a home here at SHSU. Eat ‘Em Up Kats!

 Amber Harrison- East Texas Counselor