Meet Our Coaches!




Academic Coach

Hello, this is Xiaolu Zhang, I go by Veronica. I am a graduate student majoring in Counseling. I come from China, a native Mandarin speaker. I believe that everyone can achieve their academic goal by figuring out their unique pace and way of study through various strategies. That is why I am here and the areas I can help. In my free time, I enjoy to spend quality time with my son for outdoor exercises as well as eat good ethnic food.

If you are experiencing the academic challenges, don’t hesitate to seek help. We are here for you. See you in the Learning Service.



Academic Coach

My name is Leigh Kinniebrew and I am a forensic science major. I am also an out of state student from New Jersey. I am very good with organization as well as working under tough circumstances. Due to a chronic sickness I can become very ill but I do not let that ever stop me I continue to persevere and get through school and be successful. Also I really enjoy helping others and letting them know anything you put your mind to you can do and me being an out of state student can be a challenge at times but it can also help relate me to other out of state students as well.



Academic Coach

Candidate Counseling and Development Community Agency Expected Graduation May 2017.  Each student is a unique individual; it is my job as an Academic Coach to help students focus on and maximize existing strengths as well as aid them in delineation and examination of current learning/study/testing strategies so as to improve such where needed.

I have a great interest in existential philosophy and I am fascinated with the mind-body continuum. I am a native Spanish Speaker with a large family from Colombia South America My favorite hobbies are swimming, concerts, museums, and short hikes with my dog.



Academic Coach

Yi Shang was born and raised in China, and granted his Bachelor degree in Medicine from Wenzhou Medical College. Three years ago, he came to the U.S. as an international student studying at INTO Mason; he got his M.S. in Educational Psychology in 2016 from GMU. Now he is studying in his M.Ed. in Counseling and Development. Regarding academic strengths, he is good at many topics: such as time management and managing performance anxiety. His career goal is to working as a therapist in a university setting. In his free time, he is also a passionate traveler and peak-seeker, driven cross-country and hiked around 70 national parks in the U.S.



Academic Coach

Devante is a senior, mechanical engineering major from southwest Virginia. Upon graduating, he would like to work with product development and design or alternative energy/sustainability engineering to ensure that future is safe and bright. He also loves to travel, draw, paint, and help people achieve academically.



Academic Coach

My name is Stefanie Marin and I am majoring in Sociology with a concentration in Childhood and Youth Studies. I can use my personal experiences to try to help others find their method of learning! I enjoy working in a team and helping others! An interesting fact about me is that I am a transfer student from NOVA and this is my second year at Mason. Being a transfer student was not easy but I can help those who are going through or have been in the same situation. On my downtime, I enjoy knitting!   



Academic Coach

  • My major is Psychology
  • My strength regarding learning strategies is that I have excellent time management so I complete assignments with enough time and have time to study for exams properly
  • I am a sophomore at George Mason and a part of BSA
  • I’m from Maryland, which is technically out of state but I’m 40 minutes away.




Academic Coach

Hello, my name is Brenee Byrd. I am a double major in marketing and information systems operations management. My learning style is a mix between visual, reading/writing, and auditory. I am a street team member for the Patriots Activities Council and I like helping put on events on-campus. I also have a YouTube channel that focuses on back to college videos.



Graduate Assistant

Hello! I am a graduate student with the Counseling & Development program, on the School Counseling track.  I love to travel and enjoy meeting new people. I learn best by finding creative ways to relate what I am learning in the classroom to my daily life experiences. I enjoy helping students discover new strategies to help them reach their goals.



Academic Coach

Hi there, Aya here. I’m an undergraduate student majoring in Community Health and minoring in Health Communication. I am fluent in Arabic so if you would prefer to speak in Arabic just let me know! I love doing things creatively, so no matter your concern, we’ll find a way that works best for you while also making it fun and engaging. I love working with people on a personal level; just talking with people fuels my ideas and ignites my sense of creativity. I want to be a writer and do something to improve the health of those who cannot afford adequate health care.



Academic Coach

My name is Fatoumata Foly Balde. I’m a Biology student who is good at Organization and planner. I transferred from Virginia Commonwealth University during my junior year and I was an Art major here at mason for one semester. I am Bilingual I speak another language called Fulani.



Graduate Assistant

My name is Crystal Hahn, I am a currently pursuing a masters degree in Counseling & Development at George Mason University. I received my bachelors degree in Psychology from Texas A&M University. I called Texas home for most of my life. Prior to moving to Virginia I lived in Germany, where I ran a tutoring center as part of after school program for children of military members. One of the main reasons I enjoy working at Learning Services is because I am able to integrate my knowledge of learning and memory with my counseling skills when working with students to overcome academic issues they are facing. I am also an avid reader of both fiction and nonfiction and enjoy creative pursuits such as painting, drawing, and writing.



Please call 703-993-2380, email, or stop by Learning Services in Student Union Building I, Suite 3129.