We disrupt normative views and systemic obstacles of higher education to amplify the success of contemporary college students at Mason.




Mason is a contemporary community where each student belongs, realizes, and thrives.




Contemporary students are students who have had more experiences than most college students in their lives before coming to Mason. They have been working professionals, have families, and so much more. They may have experienced things a lot of other students haven’t, like – being in the foster care system or in the military. They are students who don’t always see themselves reflected or fully supported in college outreach materials or campus programming.


Shyama Kuver, Asssociate Director, Contemporary Student Services

Shyama Kuver (she, her, herself) is an artist and educator who is passionate about creating inclusive campus spaces for all of Mason’s community members. She grew up in pre-tech San Francisco, where she was inspired by the rich diversity of cultures, beliefs, and the city’s innate sense of creativity. These experiences are what have led her to pursue a career in education, where every day she is motivated by Mason’s students and professionals.  
On campus her position is designed to assess the gaps in service that may emerge for contemporary students and how Mason can uniquely provide support for those students. By working closely with campus and community partners, she aspires to make Mason a space where all students feel a sense of belonging and thrive as they pursue their goals. 
Some of her research interests include quantitative and decolonial research methods, diversity and equity, and inclusion on post-secondary campuses, and surveillance modalities on campus and how they may affect student learning.

Louise Higgins, Office Manager, Contemporary Student Services


Louise Higgins (she, her, hers)  is the Office Manager for Contemporary Student Services. She is honored to support a dedicated and enthusiastic team devoted to all George Mason University students’ well-being.

A graduate of Pacific Lutheran University, Louise has a diverse background.  Most recently, she was at Gunston Hall, the historic home of George Mason. One of her proudest accomplishments has been her research support for the exhibit, Revolutionary Rights.

In her free time, Louise enjoys spending time with her four grown children who live in the area.

Corey I Purnell, Graduate Professional Assistant


Corey (He, Him, His) is a Graduate Professional Assistant that is devoted to fostering benevolence and equity towards the rapidly growing population of off-campus students here at George Mason University. He grew up in his hometown of Newport News (The Hampton Roads area) and has attended George Mason University all throughout undergrad. During his junior year he realized that he wanted to change his major from History to Psychology and from that point forward, ventured toward an upward trajectory on what/who he wanted to be. In May 2021 he received his bachelor’s in psychology and today he is on the road to receiving his master’s in Clinical Mental Health, aspiring to one day become a licensed therapist. 

As far as hobbies are concerned, throughout the 2020 pandemic Corey has spent most of his time consistently and constantly studying Spanish, French, Italian, and Japanese. In addition to that he loves and strives to always promote well-being in his life through fitness and health. 

Caroline Simpson, Graduate Professional Assistant


Caroline Simpson (she, her, hers) is a graduate student studying Higher Education and Student Development and is in her second year of the program. She is passionate about working with contemporary populations especially transfer students and those who live off-campus. She is a Mason alum and a transfer student who lived off-campus herself so she loves to hear about other Mason transfer student stories. Her goal is to help transfer students be successful during their time at Mason and feel connected to the campus and is looking forward to planning events and services to achieve this.

In her free time she loves to watch movies, cross-stitch, read, and play with her cat, Bandit. Caroline is happy to connect with you anytime! Send her an email at csimpso@gmu.edu. 

Rachel L Gillespie, Contemporary Student Advisor

My name’s Rachel Gillespie and I’m a senior majoring in computer science. I am a contemporary student because I’ve lived off-campus all four years.

Samiha Ahmed, Contemporary Student Advisor

Hi Friends!
My name is Samiha, and what makes me contemporary is that I am an off-campus student that has never lived on campus.  I am a senior majoring in Marketing and minoring in Psychology.  My favorite thing to do is to explore restaurants and try new foods!

Hadi A Khanji, Contemporary Student Advisor

Hi my name is Hadi Khanji and I am a contemporary student because I live off-campus. I am currently a junior at George Mason University. I am majoring in Community Health with a Clinical Science concentration.

David Teodosio, Contemporary Student Advisor

My name is David, I’m a marketing major, and I’m a contemporary student because I live off-campus in Woodbridge.

Minahil Chaudhry, Contemporary Student Advisor


Hi everyone! My name is Minahil. I’m a senior majoring in ISOM. What makes me contemporary is that I live off-campus. I’m originally from Pakistan. I love what I get to do at Contemporary Student Services, meeting and helping so many of you! Come hangout and ask me anything you want to!!

Mukheyra Khan, Contemporary Student Advisor


Hi, my name is Mukheyra Khan. My major is Global Affairs and what makes me contemporary is that I transferred to George Mason University and I’m an off-campus student. I love to travel and meet new people.

The Contemporary Student Advisor team is a group of off-campus students (just like you!) that act as peer mentors to give information about available student resources, highlight opportunities for student involvement, and provide social support! Contemporary Student Advisors are not academic advisors: they cannot give information on what classes to choose for the upcoming semester, whether or not you should drop a class, or advise you on your studies (if that is what you need, click here). They can, however, give you more information about the university, help you get involved, how to find off-campus housing, and provide advice and support on how to make the most of your off-campus student life!

Set up a virtual meeting with a contemporary student advisor by clicking here.