A Magazine for the George Mason University Community

Student Profiles

Patriot Profile: Katie Lai

By Colleen Kearney Rich on November 27, 2017

When communication major Katie Lai enrolled in a speech class at Las Positas College, she had no idea the course would completely change her trajectory. She found she was good at public speaking and was soon competing on the college’s forensics team.

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Patriot Profile: Nick Stasiak

By Mason Spirit contributor on August 4, 2017

While still in high school, Nick Stasiak began reporting on the local weather on a website he created, gaining the attention of several nearby meteorologists. When he came to Mason, he began using his page Forecast GMU (now nickstasiak.com) and the Twitter and Instagram handle @GMUWeatherman to keep Mason students informed of local weather.

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Patriot Profile: Issmar Ventura

By Colleen Kearney Rich on April 26, 2017

When communication major Issmar Ventura, BA Communication ’16, was a small boy, he aspired to be an airline pilot. When he grew up, he worked for Air France for a while and decided that career wasn’t for him. His mother suggested he become an immigration lawyer because he loved helping others. He considered it and even shadowed one for a stint, but again—not for him. He placed himself through his years at Mason by working a sales job, yet again, it just did not fit. Now he is on his way to his dream career as a broadcast journalist.

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Patriot Profile: Catherine Rochon

By Cathy Cruise, MFA '93 on February 6, 2017

A ballroom dancer since eighth grade, Catherine Rochon, now president of Mason’s Ballroom Dance Club, urges others kick up their heels as a way to unwind.

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Just One of the Guys at Redskins Camp

By Damian Cristodero on November 21, 2016

What surprised athletic training major Abigail Solis most about her internship as an athletic trainer with the NFL’s Washington Redskins was how down to earth the players seemed.

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Student Profile: Chris Fernandez

By Damian Cristodero on October 26, 2016

For biology major Chris Fernandez, receiving the $7,000 Udall Scholarship provides an opportunity, as the rising senior says, “to understand some of the roots of the conservation movement in the United States.” In August, at a four-day conference tied to the scholarship in Tucson, Arizona, he joined 60 scholarship recipients to work with professionals on case studies concerning environmental and Native American issues.

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Learning Hindi in India

By Colleen Kearney Rich on July 18, 2016

This summer, global affairs major Beverly Harp is traveling to India for the fifth time. Two of her trips were partially funded by Critical Language Scholarships from the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

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Patriot Profile: Lisa Struckmeyer

By Mason Spirit contributor on July 14, 2016

Anthropology master’s student Lisa Struckmeyer is “addicted to research” and this semester examined the often tight connection between bee keepers and their bees.

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Patriot Profile: Afra Ahmad

By Cathy Cruise, MFA '93 on April 26, 2016

For her dissertation, Afra Ahmad, BA Psychology ’08, is tackling a very timely topic: religious discrimination. By looking at 25 years of religious discrimination charges submitted to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, she is investigating how these claims have changed over time in response to a particular county’s religious diversity, unemployment rates, and voting behaviors—and how this all influences experiences on the job.

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Patriot Profile: Jason Sturm

By Damian Cristodero on January 28, 2016

Jason Sturm, who lost his leg below the knee in an army training exercise in 2002, is now a world champion bobsledder and a CrossFit trainer for amputee and non-amputee clients.

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