Graduate Student Association

The Graduate Student Association (GSA) is dedicated to the advancement and development of Graduate and Professional Students at USC. It serves to advocate on behalf of the interests of nearly 7000 graduate and professional students at the University of South Carolina. The GSA works closely with administrators, faculty and staff to achieve its goals.

2014-2015 GSA Mission Statement

The GSA’s executive officers (President, Vice President, Treasurer, and Graduate Council Representative) are elected by the USC Graduate Student Body and serve a one-year term beginning on May 1st of each year.

The GSA President recruits and appoints a Cabinet of graduate students that represent various interests and special populations. Together, the Executive Officers and Cabinet form a graduate student leadership team known as the GSA Executive Committee. The GSA Executive Committee holds biweekly formal meetings which are open to all graduate students who wish to attend.

If you have any concerns that the GSA can help address, please feel free to contact any of the executive officers directly, via our email at or by phone at 803-777-2631.

GSA Social Media

GSA in the news

Q and A with GSA President Brittany Walter for The Graduate School Magazine
USC Times profile of Former GSA President Danielle Schoffman (2013-2014) | Full Issue
Graduate Student Association on a mission: To make life better for grad students


Brittany S. Walter, President |
Brittany Walter is the President of the Graduate Student Association and a third year doctoral student studying biological anthropology in the Department of Anthropology. Her research involves investigating the effects of urbanization on past populations of medieval London using skeletal remains. Before coming to USC as a Presidential Fellow in 2012, Brittany received her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Florida as a Florida Opportunity Scholar and her Master of Arts degree as a Dean’s Fellow from the University of Central Florida. She was also chosen as a student spotlight for the USC No Limits campaign.

Brittany has served as the Graduate Council Representative, Programming Liaison, and also as member of the Graduate Finance Committee. She is a member of the Provost’s Advisory Committee on Women’s Issues, Graduate Women’s Committee, and has assisted with several events and policies for graduate students at USC through the GSA since her entrance to USC. Upon her election as President, Brittany has pledged to represent and work on behalf of the diverse and unique nature of graduate student interests, and to build on the legacy GSA has recreated thus far. She looks forward to ensuring that current, effective policies are maintained and that new, exciting ideas are successfully implemented in the coming year.

Meagan Conway, Vice President |
Meagan Conway is a third year doctoral student in the Department of Anthropology. Her current research interests include colonialism and cultural change, materialization of identity, and household dynamics in frontier spaces. She is originally from Newport News, VA, and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology and English from the University of Notre Dame. She received a Master of Arts degree in Historical Archaeology from the University of Massachusetts Boston. Meagan has served as GSA Treasurer, and also on the Finance Committee. Through this role, she has worked on many different events and programs. She also serves as supervisory staff on the Cultural Landscapes of the Irish Coast Archaeology Project, which explores thousands of years of island heritage through archaeological excavations, archival work, and oral histories.

Brianna E. Hughes, Treasurer |
Brianna Hughes currently serves as the Treasurer for the University of South Carolina Graduate Student Association. She is originally from Baltimore, Maryland and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music and History from St. Mary’s College of Maryland, in Southern Maryland. Brianna is in the Library and Information Science program at USC and is pursuing her MLIS degree with a concentration in archives and digital collections. Additionally, she is working towards completion of the Museum Management Certificate. Brianna is the recipient of the Martha Jane Zachert Scholarship and also serves as the graduate student representative to the South Carolina Archival Association and the Thomas Cooper Society. Brianna currently is serving as the Graduate Assistant in the Folklife Resource Center at McKissick Museum. In that role, she is working on the digitization of the Center’s vast oral history collection. She is also a Special Projects Assistant in the Digital Collections Department and the Irvin Department of Special Collections and Rare Books at USC. Prior to her election as treasurer, Brianna served as the Student Health Insurance Liaison.

Danielle E. Schoffman, Graduate Council Representative |

Danielle E. Schoffman currently serves as the Graduate Council Representative of the USC GSA. A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Danielle received a dual Bachelor of Arts Degree from Stanford University majoring in Human Biology and Anthropological Sciences. After graduation, Danielle worked as a project coordinator at the Stanford Prevention Research Center, managing clinical trials for behavioral weight management. In the fall of 2011, she entered the Arnold School of Public Health’s Health Promotion, Education, and Behavior PhD program, and was awarded a Presidential Doctoral Fellowship. Danielle’s research interests include family interventions for obesity prevention and the use of mobile technologies in health behavior research. She is a Graduate Research Assistant for the USC Prevention Research Center, where she works on research projects related to community-engaged physical activity interventions. Danielle has been involved in GSA leadership for the past 3 years; prior to serving as the Graduate Council Representative, Danielle held the positions of President (1.5 years), Graduate Assistant Liaison (1 year), Programming Liaison (5 months), and Vice President (1 month).

The Cabinet

The GSA Cabinet is a leadership team of graduate students for graduate students, and is comprised of graduate students who devote their advocacy initiatives to specific areas of the graduate experience. The Cabinet meets twice a month to discuss initiatives, plan events, and relay opportunities specific to their position focus.

If you have a question or a concern, any of our Cabinet members are happy to help. Email addresses for each position can be found below.

Michaela Schenkelberg
Michaela Schenkelberg serves as Secretary for the Graduate Student Association (GSA) as well as the GSA Liaison for the Arnold School of Public Health’s Dean’s Student Advisory Council. Prior to these roles, she served as the Events and Community Service Liaison. A Nebraska native, Michaela graduated from the University of Nebraska Omaha in 2011 with a Bachelor of Science in Education with an emphasis on Exercise Science and a minor in Spanish. She earned her Master of Public Health degree with an emphasis on physical activity from Kansas State University and is currently a second year doctoral student in Exercise Science – Health Aspects of Physical Activity. In the summer of 2014 she served as the Physical Activity Director for Camp P.A.L.S., a camp for individuals with social skills deficits, which she helped develop with a post-doctoral fellow in Psychology. Michaela is also a volunteer with the Columbia Council for Internationals, a non-profit organization, which offers assistance to international students in Columbia and surrounding areas.

Financial Committee Chair
Ryan M. LaMonica
Ryan M. LaMonica is a second year student in the Moore School’s Professional MBA Program, focusing his studies with a concentration in international business. Hailing from Niceville, Florida, Ryan attended the University of Notre Dame as a Coca-Cola Scholar and Naval R.O.T.C. Scholarship recipient where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering. Attaining the rank of Lieutenant as a nuclear propulsion officer in the Navy’s submarine force, Ryan was certified as a Chief Nuclear Engineer by the U.S. Department of Energy. He served in numerous leadership capacities during his time aboard the USS Alabama (SSBN-731) while also earning his Master’s degree in Engineering Management from Old Dominion University. After leaving active duty, Ryan managed multiple aspects of commercial nuclear energy projects for URS Corporation. Since 2011, he has overseen the risk portfolio for SCANA’s New Nuclear Deployment in Jenkinsville, SC and is a member of the Risk Management Society (RIMS). Ryan resides in the Irmo area with his wife, Millie and their two beautiful children.

Communications Coordinator
Emily Garnett
Emily Garnett is a fourth year PhD student in the Neurolinguistics Lab in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders. She received a B.S. in Psychology in 2005 and a M.S. in Speech Pathology in 2009, both from West Virginia University. She is an ASHA-certified Speech-Language Pathologist who uses behavioral and neurophysiological methods (e.g., fMRI and HD-tDCS) to investigate speech production, specifically in disorders such as cluttering, stuttering, aphasia, and apraxia of speech. Emily is a 2012 recipient of the New Century Scholars Doctoral Scholarship from the America Speech Language Hearing Foundation. She also received a SPARC Graduate Fellowship from USC and a grant from the National Stuttering Association for her work involving cortical stimulation in people who stutter. Emily received an Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant Award from The Graduate School in 2014. She teaches undergraduate and master’s courses at USC, and will be an Adjunct Instructor at Winthrop University in the Fall. In her free time she plays French horn in the Columbia Community Concert Band.

Diversity Affairs Liaison
Katina “Andie” Bridgeman
Katina “Andie” Bridgeman serves as the Diversity Affairs Liaison for the Graduate Student Association. She is originally from Pembroke, North Carolina and received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from North Carolina State University. Andie is a first year student in the Master of Social Work program with a specialty in Military and Veteran Communities. She also currently serves as a Graduate Assistant in South Carolina Department of Social Services with USC’s Center for Child and Family Studies. During her undergraduate career at NC State, she worked with a student ran group, The Movement, that advocated the education and awareness of interpersonal violence such as sexual assault, rape, domestic violence, and stalking within college campuses and hopes to continue that workout throughout the military community. As a the spouse of an Active Duty Airman, she hopes her current research on military sexual assault and rape reporting, or lack thereof, will assist in better programming and resources for survivors in the military communities.

Health Liaison
Courtney Schrock
Courtney Schrock is the Health Liaison member of the Graduate Student Association and the chair of the Health Task Force. She is a first-year Master’s student in the Arnold School of Public Health in the department of Health Promotion, Education and Behavior. Courtney graduated from Washington and Jefferson College with a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and before coming to USC she served as a Peace Corps volunteer for two years in Ukraine. Courtney is a member of the USC IHI Open School Chapter and volunteers with the Eat Smart Move More Coalition in Columbia. She is also a member of the Graduate Students and Community Engagement Steering Committee. Upon her selection as Health Liaison and Chair of the Health Task Force, Courtney has pledged to act accordingly on behalf of the entire graduate student body at USC and will uphold the rules and the reputation that the GSA has established thus far. She looks forward to an exciting and successful year.

Graduate Assistant Liaison
Bailey Sanford
Bailey Sanford serves as the GSA Graduate Assistant Liason. Bailey is a first year Masters of Teaching student in Special Education. He is originally from Pineville, North Carolina and graduated from the University of South Carolina with a BA in Religious Studies. Bailey is employed as a Graduate Assistant with the CarolinaLIFE program at USC. After graduation, Bailey hopes to pursue in a career in public policy concentrating on disability rights and educational law. He enjoys traveling, being outdoors, and public radio.

Teaching Assistant Liaison
Dot Collins
Dot Collins is a first year doctoral student in Sport Management and Presidential Fellow at USC. Prior to coming to USC she earned her BA in Comparative Religious Studies from Lawrence University in Appleton, WI and a second Bachelor’s in English Literature from Southwest Minnesota State University. During the last 15 years she has worked in communications and as a full time swim coach. In 2012, she returned to school at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, VA to pursue a Master’s degree in Sport Management. Her primary research interest is fan identification, in particular in non-local fans. At the completion of her Ph.D. Dot hopes to secure a faculty position that will allow her to be an active researcher, while also sharing my passion for sport management with the next generation of students. When not working, Dot volunteers around the pool and enjoys spending time with her partner, Jim, and their three children.

Event Coordinator
Dominic Casali
Dominic Casali serves as the Event Coordinator for the GSA. Dom is from Melbourne, Florida and received a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from the Florida Institute of Technology. He is a Presidential Fellow at the University of South Carolina and is in his fourth year in the chemical engineering Ph.D. program, researching biomedical applications for supercritical fluids. Previously, Dom has served for a year and a half as the GSA’s Graduate Student Life Liaison. Now, as Event Coordinator, Dom helps to organize the GSA’s various recreational and professional events and intramural sports teams.

Military Affairs Liaison
Aubrey L. Sejuit
Aubrey L. Sejuit is a doctoral candidate in the Counselor Education and Supervision Ph.D. program and serves as the Military Affairs Liaison for the GSA. Aubrey earned her A.A. in Letters, Arts, and Sciences in 2004, a B.A. in Sociology and a B.A. in History in 2007, and an M.Ed. in Teaching and Curriculum in 2009—all from Penn State. She earned her M.S.W. in Social Work in 2012 from Syracuse University. She deployed to Baghdad, Iraq with the 203D MI BN as an Intelligence Analyst during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Aubrey is a licensed master social worker (LMSW) and a credentialed alcohol and substance abuse counselor (CASAC) in New York. She is the Ritual Advisor for the Lambda Theta Chapter of Phi Mu and the Doctoral Student at-Large of Chi Sigma Iota, the counseling honor society. Aubrey’s research interests include addictions, military affairs, at-risk youth, educational attainment, and LGBTQI populations.

International Affairs Liaison
Md Hassan Zamir
Md Hassan Zamir serves as the International Affairs Liaison of University of South Carolina Graduate Student Association. He is originally from Bangladesh. He is currently pursuing his PhD in the School of Library and Information Science as a “Cultural Heritage Informatics Fellow” awarded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). His research areas revolve around information retrieval, social informatics and data mining. He has earned his Undergraduate and Master degree in the Library and Information Science from Bangladesh. Prior to joining the PhD program, he worked in the digital libraries and information technology departments in various reputed multinational organizations. Currently he is involved with the analyses of tweets with a focus to find more convenient ways of organization, classification and user-need based retrievals of these social media data. Previously Zamir was the GSA Secretary was primarily responsible for composing the meeting agendas, recording minutes and updating the GSA website and social media accordingly. With his new position he is involved with bridging connections between the USC international students and the Graduate School.

Social Media Coordinator
Anais Parada
Anais Parada serves as the Social Media Liaison for the University of South Carolina Graduate Student Association. She is a first year doctoral student in cultural anthropology in the Department of Anthropology, and working toward completion of her master’s thesis. Her research interests include the anthropology of fashion and dress, cultural property and indigenous identity, appropriation and authenticity, social media, transnational movement and memory. Her previous fieldwork was conducted in Quito, Ecuador. Before coming to USC as a master’s candidate she received her BA in Anthropology at the University of Illinois. Anais has also served as the co-president of the Anthropology Graduate Organization for Research, Action and Ethics. In this role she organized off campus conferences, facilitated a strong relationship with the undergraduate association and the community, and initiated a new lecture series. She is looking forward to working with GSA and expanding their social media reach.

Spouse and Family Liaison
Morgan Rackley
Morgan Rackley serves as the Spouse & Family Liaison for the University of South Carolina Graduate Student Association. She is a first year Master of Health Administration student in the Department of Health Services Policy & Management. Morgan is from Charlotte, North Carolina and received a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Health from East Carolina University in May of 2013. During the year between completing her Bachelor’s degree and beginning her Master’s program, she was a middle & high school physical education/health teacher. Her other campus involvements include being a student member of the American College of Healthcare Executives, as well as the Healthcare Executive Student Association. Her interests include fitness, community wellness, and health care program management. At ECU, Morgan was a member of the Eta Sigma Gamma Honor Society, as well as the Iota Rho Chapter of Zeta Tau Alpha. As the Spouse & Family Liaison, Morgan will provide support to graduate students who are spouses and/or parents during their time at USC, as well as plan activities that are centered on creating a welcoming atmosphere for the spouses & children of graduate students at USC.

University Affairs Liaison
Andrew Fogner
Andrew Fogner is a first year master student in the Department of Epidemiology in the Arnold School of Public Health. This is his first year serving as the GSA University Affairs Liaison. His current research interests include HIV/AIDS and infectious disease in Latino populations. He is originally from Conway, South Carolina, and received a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry and a Bachelor of Science in Spanish from the University of South Carolina. He looks forward to working with GSA in assisting with collaborative initiatives and communication between GSA, the Undergraduate Student Government and Student Life.

Graduate Organization Liaison
Sara Rhodes
Sara Rhodes serves as the Graduate Organizations Liaison and is a first year master’s student in the College of Social Work. While earning her MSW, she is specializing in Health and Mental Health and earning a certificate in Military Members, Veterans, and Families. Prior to attending the University, Sara served with AmeriCorps State and National in Austin, Texas serving at-risk youth. Sara is originally from West Virginia and earned her bachelor’s degree in social work from West Virginia University. Currently, Sara serves as secretary for the Social Work Student Association. In her free time, she enjoys camping, volunteering for 4-H, and her dog, Babs.​

Community Service Officer
Sandra Greene
Sandra Greene is a first year graduate student in the Higher Education and Student Affairs program and a graduate assistant in University 101 Programs. Sandy is from New York City, New York and received a Bachelor of Arts in History and History of Science, Medicine, and Technology from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. She has served as an AmeriCorps*VISTA at the University of South Carolina and as an AmeriCorps State/National member at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Sandy is interested in the relationship that institutions of higher education have with surrounding communities. Sandy is excited to promote community service opportunities and to start working with the GSA.

Professional Development Liaison
Nathan Cornwell
Nathan Cornwell was born in Seattle, Washington. He says, “My family moved to Eugene, Oregon when I was three. I lived there until I left to attend Franciscan University of Steubenville. After graduating with a B.A. in philosophy, I remained there to take some graduate courses in philosophy and worked as an assistant to two members of the philosophy department, one of whom was also the editor of the journal the department publishes. I got married in May of this year to my wonderful wife, Kelsey, in her hometown of Brainerd, Minnesota–in fact, we moved here by driving a little over 2,000 miles, from Steubenville to Brainerd to Columbia, in her ‘92 Honda Accord! I have four younger siblings, three brothers and a sister. In my free time, I enjoy all sorts of outdoor activities, especially hiking, camping, and birdwatching. Finally, I am very excited to be pursuing my Ph.D. in philosophy here.”

GSA Elections Information: