Alumni Profiles

Our graduates are among the best in their fields. From careers in government to the private sector, Schar School graduates are thriving in their professions and advancing solutions in a complex and changing world.

Tell us what you have been up to.

Karen Metscher, PhD, Public Policy, 2009
Senior Policy Consultant
Altarum Institute

Although Karen Metscher initially viewed her graduate research position as a way to finance her studies, she quickly realized the greater opportunity it provided through its exposure to work with an expansive list of researchers and analysts in a wide variety of specialties. Now, as a senior policy consultant at Altarum Institute, Metscher leads a team that provides research and consulting services related to health systems, with a particular emphasis on military health systems. She started the week after defending her dissertation. In addition to her nearly 20 years of experience in healthcare administration, Metscher attributes her success to honed research skills and increased knowledge of the policy process she gained at the Schar School, as well as being selected for the associates program at RAND during her studies.

Houcine Mkais, MA, International Commerce and Policy, 2009

After a lucrative career in sales and marketing, Houcine Mkais decided to follow his dream to open his own international trade consulting business. As president of TRADEZONE USA, a trade management company specializing in export-import, brokerage, and trade consulting services, Mkais is responsible for setting solid business strategies for his team, leading contract negotiations, managing business operations, and handling all accounting, sales, and marketing. He credits his experience in the ICP program and the relationships he developed with the Schar School professors and colleagues with helping him become an entrepreneur who has a thriving small business with clients spanning the globe.

Carrie Sue Casey, MS, Peace Operations, 2008
Foreign Affairs Specialist
U.S. Department of Defense

Carrie Sue Casey has always had an interest in international affairs and a desire to help others. She worked for a D.C. communications/marketing firm and a New York City nonprofit, and served as the primary correspondence writer for two secretaries of defense before deciding to attend graduate school to focus her interests and develop her skills. Casey believes her peace operations degree provided her with the necessary academic credentials to transition into working as a member of the policy staff in the Office of the Deputy Secretary of Defense, where she served for two years as the desk officer for 11 West African nations and currently provides guidance and oversight for a new global defense ministerial reform initiative.

Yuri Sineriz, MPP, 2007
Senior Associate

At a time in his career when Yuri Sineriz recognized the need to augment his undergraduate degree in international relations, he observed that many of his respected colleagues had earned MPP degrees. His decision to pursue and obtain an MPP proved to be a valuable investment. Sineriz says his graduate degree prepared him for a position at PricewaterhouseCoopers and helped him better understand his clients’ needs. As a senior associate, he advises clients in strategic planning, project management, and a number of special technology projects. In his fast-paced, rapidly-changing, and highly analytical industry, Yuri finds he often taps into the understanding and skills he gained from the Schar School’s MPP program.

Paul DiMaio, MA, Transportation Policy, Operations, and Logistics, 2005
MetroBike, LLC

Just months after graduating from the Schar School, Paul DiMaio founded MetroBike, a bike-sharing consulting business. Paul notes he was able to leave the safety of his stable full-time government job, where he was employed during his studies, because his professors and advisors supported and encouraged him to focus on his interest in progressive transport issues. He looked at other graduate programs throughout the country, but he chose George Mason because the TPOl program was a perfect complement to his urban planning undergraduate degree. He adds that the Schar School’s convenient location, outstanding reputation, and great educational value sealed the deal.

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