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Meet the Team

 James S. Wylde

 Director of Career and Graduate Student Services 

 Email: [email protected]

 Appointments are available on request.

Jim has 25+ years of experience in global career and leadership development. His background includes 16 years with the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and subsequent service as a consultant to international organizations such as the World Bank Group, along with public, private, and non-profit organizations and universities. For nine years he managed his own leadership coaching and facilitation practice, WyldeFire Creatives LLC, during which time he was also a Principal Consultant with Contacts Count, a networking training and consulting firm. He holds a Master of Arts in International Affairs from American University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Government from Oberlin College. As a coach certified through the International Coach Foundation (ICF), he has focused on dynamic communication and global public service. Earlier in his career, Jim served as Director of Cooperative Education at the American University Career Center. With a passion for all things international, Jim speaks Spanish, studied in Tours, France and lived in San José, Costa Rica. His personal mission is to inspire and equip the global leaders of the future. Jim is a co-author of the book Strategic Connections: The New Face of Networking in a Collaborative World (AMACOM 2015).


At GSS, Jim

  • Provides strategic oversight to create an optimal student academic and career development experience.
  • Manages and integrates all office functions, from outreach to programming and coaching.


 Tina S. Gaddy

 Senior Employer Relations Specialist



Tina joined the GSS team in September 2015 bringing with her a strong business background, and over a decade of experience in Higher Education Administration. Her expertise includes Strategic Career Services, Employer Relations, and Business Development. She is a Philadelphia native, who most recently moved to Washington D.C. by way of Chicago, strengthening her professional experience as well as her dedication to volunteering and civic engagement along the way. She holds a B.A. from Lincoln University and a Master of Science degree in Organizational Management from Springfield College. In addition to being active with her alumni associations, Tina enjoys memberships with the National Association of Colleges and Employers, and the National Urban League Young Professionals.

At GSS, Tina

  • Coordinates employer programming including site visits, networking panels and information sessions.
  • Develops employer-facilitated professional development seminars and workshops.
  • Conducts employer outreach to expand career opportunities for Elliott School graduate students.
  • Assists the Director with the development of international internships and employment opportunities.

Tara Sonenshine  Tara Sonenshine

Senior Career Coach
Email: [email protected]

Tara Sonenshine served as U.S. Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs until 2013. Tara has a distinguished career in government, non-profits and the media.  She has demonstrated expertise in foreign policy, programming, communications strategy and public policy and has had extensive dealings with business, community and governmental leaders worldwide.  Her high level experience in the media includes producing news programs for network television and authoring articles for national print and online media.  Sonenshine is the winner of 10 News Emmy Awards and other awards in journalism for programs on domestic and international issues.   Having served on the Board of Trustees at the Women’s Foreign Policy Group and other organizations, Ms. Sonenshine has actively consulted to the private sector, NGO sector, and multiple clients on media outreach, board development, and strategic communications including facilitation and moderating programs for The Wilson Center, The United States Institute of Peace, Voice of America and others. Sonenshine has worked at The White House as Deputy Director of Communications. She is a contributor to The and other media outlets.

At GSS, Tara

  • Provides individual career coaching to students and alumni on career exploration, internship/job search, and interview techniques.
  • Assists the Director with leading the Career Cafe, covering a variety of topics, for Elliott School graduate students and alumni.
  • Manages the Freeman Foundation Grant. 

Sharon McCoy  Sharon McCoy

Career coach
Email: [email protected]

Prior to arriving at GW, Sharon McCoy served as an Associate Director in the White House Presidential Personnel Office, where she contributed to the recruitment, placement, and retention of political appointees at national security agencies. From 2014 to 2016, Ms. McCoy was a Press Assistant in the Office of Public Affairs at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Before her work in the Federal Government, she was a Research Fellow at GovLoop and served as a Program Assistant for the Washington, D.C. semester programs of the University of Georgia (UGA) and New York University (NYU). From 2013 to 2015, she volunteered as a staff member for the group, Young Professionals in Foreign Policy (YPFP). A speaker of Spanish, she has traveled extensively throughout Latin America, including the countries of Argentina, Chile, Cuba, Ecuador, Jamaica, and Uruguay. Ms. McCoy received a Bachelor’s of Arts in International Affairs and Spanish from the University of Georgia and a Master’s in Pacific International Affairs from the University of California, San Diego.

At GSS, Sharon

  • Serves as a Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI)® Certified Practitioner, providing interactive personality assessment opportunities for students and alumni.
  • ​Gives​ individual career coaching to students and alumni on ​subjects such as ​career exploration, internship/job search​ strategies​,​​ and salary negotiation.
  • Manages the Elliott School International Internship Grant. 

SarahSarah Denes

Senior Graduate Academic Advisor
Email: [email protected]

Sarah Denes (pronounced Dennis) has worked in higher education since 2009, and prior to joining the Elliott School, she worked with faculty and students in the School of Languages and Literatures at Penn State. Sarah joined the Office of Academic Advising and Student Services in November 2015 where she worked with students from each of the Elliott School's 12 graduate programs.

Sarah received her B.A. in Political Science from Virginia Tech and her M.Ed. in Higher Education from Penn State. In her spare time, she enjoys running, biking, traveling, eating great food, and hanging out with her husband, Sam, and dog, Ellie.
At GSS, Sarah provides academic advice to International Affairs program students, which includes:
  • course selection
  • preparing a plan of study
  • navigating the language requirement
  • checking progress toward graduation
  • providing academic support and resources

Elizabeth  Elizabeth Lusk

Graduate Academic Advisor
Email: [email protected]

Elizabeth Lusk received a B.A. in Communications from Christopher Newport University (CNU) before earning her Master of Science in Education (MSEd) with a concentration in Higher Education Leadership and a specialization in Student Affairs at Old Dominion University (ODU).  Before beginning her time at GW as a graduate academic advisor, Elizabeth worked with diversity initiatives and orientation programming.  In these positions, she enjoyed working with students from a variety of backgrounds and identities.  Her passion for exploration and travel led her to study abroad in Ireland during her undergraduate career and Hong Kong during her graduate coursework.  Elizabeth is actively engaged in the leadership of her local alumni chapter and is a member of NACADA: The Global Community for Academic Advising.    

At GSS, Elizabeth

  • Advising graduate students in the Global Communications, International Development Studies, International Science and Technology Policy, International Trade and Investment Policy, and Security Policy Studies programs.

Patrick Murphy  Patrick Murphy

Program Associate, International Education
Email: [email protected]

Patrick Murphy received a B.A. in International Studies from the University of Iowa. He spent two years working at World Learning on a Department of State funded exchange program. Specifically, he worked with undergraduate exchange students from the Middle East, North Africa and East Asia. Before that he also used to teach English in Japan on the JET Program. In 2016, he came to the Elliott School because he was looking to gain experience working on the university side of international education. He is really passionate about higher education and, specifically, the globalization of U.S. college campuses. 

At GSS, Patrick 
  • Oversees the Elliott School's graduate exchange agreements and the International Internship grant and Freeman Foundation Grant.
  • Oversees and manages the Elliott School foreign language exam and proficiency requirement.
  • Serves as the travel security point person for Global Capstone, International Internship, Freeman and Graduate Study Abroad.
  • Is a member of the GW Committee for International Student Success, the GW Exchange Committee, the Global Bachelors Advisory Board, and the Elliott School Students Affairs Leadership Team.
  • Is the academic advisor for for MIS, EES, AS, MES and LAHS, plus all inbound and outbound graduate exchange students.

  Lyndia McMullen

Administrative Assistant

Email: [email protected]

Lyndia received a B.A. in International Affairs and French from Grand Valley State University before serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Burkina Faso. Currently, she is pursuing her Master of Arts in International Affairs, concentrating in International Affairs and Development and Global Gender Policy.

At GSS, Lyndia

  • Manages the office and student staff, ensuring that Elliott School graduate students and alumni receive exceptional service.
  • Supports all GSS events, workshops, and employer programs.
  • Serves as office webmaster, supporting the Elliott School Public Affairs department.




Contact Us:

1957 E Street NW, Suite 603
Washington, DC 20052
Phone: 202-994-3788
Fax: 202-994-7702
Email: [email protected]

Hours: Monday through Friday 8:30 am - 5:30 pm

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