Welcome to the Mason Grad Insider!September 7, 2016
By Katrina Dunlap and Austin Deray
Greetings, Mason graduate and professional students, and welcome to the Mason Grad Insider blog! The purpose of this blog, sponsored by Graduate Student Life and University Life Arlington, is to connect with graduate-level students across the Mason campuses to communicate useful information and resources that will support success and well-being.
Check back each week for blogs that will cover various topics ranging from academic and professional tips and strategies to resources on well-being and financial health. We encourage new ideas! If you have any topic suggestions you’d like to submit, please send them our way to firstname.lastname@example.org. Occasionally, Mason Grad Insider will feature posts by guest bloggers from around the Mason community. If you are interested in this unique opportunity, let us know!
Who We Are
Katrina Dunlap is the Graduate Professional Assistant for University Life Arlington. Working closely with Assistant Dean Lori Cohen Scher, she supports program planning and coordination for University Life Arlington’s offerings, including signature programs such as Pizza & Perspectives and Coffee & Conversation. Katrina regularly engages and partners with Mason student leaders on various student-led initiatives, enhancing academic life both socially and intellectually at the Arlington campus. Additionally, Katrina serves as the Community Outreach Chair for the Association of Public Policy PhD Students. She is currently a second–year doctoral student in the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. Katrina’s research interests include examining the social and financial impacts of extreme events, in particular terrorism and natural disasters. She received an M.A. in Public Policy at George Mason University after completing a B.A. in Political Science at North Carolina Central University. Previously, she worked as a Senior Consultant providing analytical support, program performance evaluation, and technical writing expertise for the intelligence community and homeland security mission in previous employment opportunities.
Austin Deray is the Graduate Professional Assistant for Graduate Student Life. He assists with program planning and coordination in support of co-curricular experiences of graduate students and helps with maintaining and enhancing the Graduate Student Life website. Austin assists in building a strong graduate community by overseeing communication about programs and services using web, social media, listservs, and other outlets, and works closely with Julie Choe Kim, the Director of Graduate Student Life. Austin is a first–year doctoral student in Cultural Studies at George Mason University. His research interests include the historical construct of gender and heteronormative masculinity, all male institutions and how they fit into larger social institutions, and the roles privilege and regionalism play in gendered social institutions. Austin has a B.A. in European History, minoring in Religious Studies and Medieval Literature, a M.A. in Medieval History, concentration in Norman and Plantagenet England and Capetian France, and a G.C. in Gender Studies, concentration in heteronormative masculinity in collegiate males and women in medieval French and English literature. Prior to coming to Mason, he was a Professor of Gender Studies at Armstrong State University, faculty adviser to Armstrong’s Feminist United undergraduate club and The Graduate Coordinating Student Council, the Chapter Advisory Board Chairman to the Georgia Epsilon Chapter of Phi Delta Theta Fraternity, and a Court Appointed Special Advocate with Savannah/Chatham County Court Appointed Special Advocates.
Grad Student Welcome Days
As the year kicks into full swing, several Mason offices and departments have come together to provide resources to help graduate students get acclimated. During the first six weeks of the semester, as part of a series called Grad Student Welcome Days, several events will be held across the Mason campuses, ranging from educational and career workshops to networking events for graduate students of diverse identities. Check out the line-up for Grad Student Welcome Days here.
We would also like to take this opportunity to highlight one of the major fall events for Graduate Student Life: Gradstravaganza. All new and continuing Mason graduate students are invited to the 4th annual Gradstravaganza, Mason’s graduate student welcome event! Mini-workshops for graduate student success will be held 3:30-5:00pm in the Johnson Center, 3rd Floor. The picnic will be held 5:30-7:30pm at The Hub, including the Lawn, Patio and indoor spaces. Join fellow Mason grad students for FREE food, mini-workshops highlighting strategies for success in graduate school, connections with campus resources, door prizes, and giveaways, including t-shirts! Families are welcome! Remember to bring your Mason student ID with you and for full details, visit Gradstravaganza.