Graduate Student Affairs (GSA) provides programming and services to Graduate Engineering students that support and enhance the student experience and success. GSA offers holistic guidance from orientation to graduation, including academic advising, class registration, and events that promote student life and wellness. Our office seeks to be your go-to resource for navigating Columbia University and assisting with any questions or challenges that arise during your time here. We look forward to meeting you!

Graduate Student Affairs Team

Yannick L Brookes, JD

Assistant Dean of Graduate Student Affairs, 212-853-2463  

Yannick Brookes received his Juris Doctor degree from Florida A&M University. He is currently pursuing his Doctor of Education in Higher Education Administration from Northeastern University. He was born and raised in St. Thomas, United States Virgin Islands. He comes to Columbia with many years of graduate & professional school administration experience including academic advising, admissions, student engagement, student services, academic support, and diversity and inclusion. He is the academic liaison to the following departments: Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering and Engineering Mechanics, Electrical Engineering, and Industrial Engineering and Operations Research. In his spare time, he enjoys traveling, going to the movies, exercising, and spending time with family and friends.  He assists students with questions about academic resources, support and resources for wellness and quality of life issues, or general questions or concerns. He can be contacted via email. 

Areas of Responsibility:

  • Academic Support and Guidance
  • Fellowships and Research Opportunities
  • Academic Policies and Procedures
  • University and SEAS Resources


Jessica Rosa

Assistant Dean of Graduate Student Affairs, 212 854 5379

Jessica Rosa completed her M.A. in Higher Education & Organizational Change at University of California, Los Angeles. She primarily works with graduate students in the Biomedical Engineering, Computer Science, Mechanical Engineering, and Earth & Environmental Engineering departments, as well as students in the MS in Data Science program. In her capacity as Assistant Dean, she provides academic resources and general quality of life support to SEAS graduate students. Prior to joining GSA, she worked in the Computer Science Department at Columbia University. You can contact her via email.

Areas of Responsibility:

  • Academic Support and Guidance
  • Fellowships and Research Opportunities
  • Academic Policies and Procedures
  • University and SEAS Resources

Asha De Costa

Associate Director of Wellness, 212 854 2093

Asha De Costa completed M.A. and Ed.M. degrees in Psychological Counseling from Teachers College, Columbia University and a licensed mental health counselor (LMHC). Asha supports students to access appropriate health and wellness resources around Columbia community. Prior to joining GSA, she worked at the Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health. You can connect with her via email.

Areas of Responsibility:

  • Develop and implement wellness programming
  • Provide support and referrals to wellness resources and services
  • SEAS Disability Services Liaison: Non-Academic Accommodations 

Alvaro Rojas-Caamano

Associate Director of Graduate Student Affairs, 212 854 8930

Higher Education professional with 15 years of experience working in the higher education space including student advising & development, international education programming, student recruitment, and college internship management.

Areas of Responsibility:

  • Graduate student life, programming & events
  • Graduate Student Organizations
  • Engineering Graduate Student Council
  • Housing
  • Collaborations with other Columbia schools & departments


Betty Hsu

Assistant Director of Graduate Student Services, 212 854 6499

Betty is responsible for advising the Columbia University Chinese Students and Scholars Association (CUCSSA) and other graduate student groups. She plays a key role in graduate student affairs administration at the School of Engineering and Applied Science, the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and other Columbia schools by developing and implementing programs and services to support the diverse needs of graduate students and communicating and enforcing academic policies and procedures.

Areas of Responsibility:

  • Advisor for the Columbia University Chinese Students and Scholars Association (CUCSSA)
  • Graduate student life and programming
  • Financial administration


Shadman Islem

Student Affairs Manager, 
212 853 1664

Previously a member of the Office of Graduate Student Affairs as a Graduate Assistant, Shadman joined the team full-time in 2018. He assists with various aspects of student life and academic affairs at Columbia Engineering, from planning programming to graduation clearances to financial administration. He is passionate about indie music, urban design, and contemporary issues in higher education. Shadman completed his MA in Higher & Postsecondary Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, and has a BS in Brain & Cognitive Sciences from the University of Rochester.

Areas of Responsibility:

  • Graduate student programming and events
  • SEAS Disability Services Liaison: Academic Accommodations
  • Orientation Engineer and Peer Mentoring programs
  • Degree clearances and Class Day communications
  • Financial administration for EGSC and student groups

Graduate Assistants

Our Graduate Assistants are crucial members of the GSA team, helping every day with the planning and execution of events related to graduate student life. As graduate students themselves, they offer a unique perspective on supporting our population.


Drishti Choudhury
EdM in School Psychology, TC'22

Drishti graduated from New York University with a B.S. in Applied Psychology, Spanish, and Linguistics. She dedicates the majority of her spare time to adult coloring books and trying to track down the best burger in Manhattan.

Zachary Beaudoin
MS in Negotiation and Conflict Resolution, SPS'20

Zach graduated from Fredonia University with a B.A. in English and a B.S. in International Relations. His contract in the US Army Reserve ended February 2019, and he's had a beard ever since. He loves public parks, quality public transportation, and reading the daily news. 

Amanda Hosek
MIA in Human Rights and Humanitarian Policy, SIPA'21

Amanda has a B.A. from McGill University, where she majored in Psychology and minored in English Literature and General Management. Amanda is a meticulous planner, and has (more than once) written out a 20-year life plan broken down into 6-month intervals.


Seunggun Lee
MPH in Sociomedical Sciences, Mailman'20

Seunggun received her B.S. in Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Iowa. She love adventures and spontaneous road trips. She once drove from Chicago, IL to the Key West, FL to try the original key lime pie in the Key West.

Zhao Li
MA in Bilingual/Bicultural Education, TC'20

Zhao is a second year graduate student at Teacher's College, Columbia University. She loves intercultural communication and event organizing. In her spare time, she goes to museums and plays ukulele.