NC State
Graduate Student Association

Executive Board Roles and Duties

The executive board oversees the administration of the GSA and serves as the first line of communication between the GSA and the rest of the University at large. When contacting the GSA, it is normally better to address the entire exec board to ensure that your message is heard and answered, but if you need to reach out to a particular member, they are listed here for your reference.

  • President: James Withrow
    • Executive Liason for the Special Projects and Political Action Committee
    • Addresses graduate student concerns, Inter-University networking, communicates with graduate student body
  • Vice President of External AffairsRyan Dudek
    • Executive Liason for the Community Service Committee
    • University standing committees, organizes GSA community service events, represents GSA
  • Vice President of Internal Affairs: Laura Minnema
    Executive Liason for the Department of Outreach and Leadership Committee

    • Best Practices Award, Representative resource, and constitutional amendments
  • Vice President of Academic Affairs: Urmila Adhikari
    • Executive Liason for the Research Recognition Committee
    • GSA Award for Conferences, Graduate Research Symposium
  • Vice President of Communication: Deveshwar Hariharan
    • Executive Liason for the Publicity Committee
    • Listserv, website updates, and technological concerns
  • VP of  Student Governance Relations: Lexie Malico
    • Represent the graduate students in student governance structures
  • Secretary: Emily Krzystowczyk
    • Executive Liason for the Teaching Effectiveness Committee
    • Outstanding TA Awards, meeting minutes, and historicizing the organization
  • Treasurer: Josh Wheeler
    • Executive Liason for the Social Committee
    • Yearly budget, honoraria/block grant, social events

Executive Board Bios

President: James Withrow

Hello Wolfpack grad students!

I am a PhD student in the Biology and Entomology programs studying social and reproductive behavior in honey bees. My research is focused on understanding queen-queen and worker-queen interactions to create colonies with multiple queens at a time to increase colony productivity and protect against queen failure. As President my role is to lead the Executive Board and represent the interests of the graduate student body to university administration and other entities. I also work closely with the GSA Special Projects committee, which addresses a wide range of grad student concerns. Some of my goals for this year are to promote university action on financial and mental health concerns in the grad student population. I am also working to increase collaboration with undergraduates through Student Government and with grad students at other NC universities to more effectively promote our collective student interests.


Vice President of External AffairsRyan Dudek

“Hello! I’m Ryan Dudek, a 5th-year PhD Candidate in Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering. I work on sustainable energy technology and energy policy, and I’m passionate about developing solutions that reduce CO2 emissions from the chemicals industry. My research at NC State focuses on improving the energy efficiency of cracking and dehydrogenation processes. My interest in policy has guided me through various roles: as the president and representative for my departmental GSA, as one of NC State’s delegates to the National Association of Graduate-Professional Students, as the chair for GSA’s Committee on Legislative Affairs & Student Advocacy, and finally as your Vice President for External Affairs. Beyond the Wolfpack, I’ve written for our neighbors at the Duke SciPol program, and I’ve volunteered extensively with environmental groups and STEM education initiatives. As a GSA executive, my most important duty is to advocate for you, the graduate students of NC State, at all levels, from the NC State administration all the way up to federal government. If you need a resource and don’t have it, let me know. And if you’re interested in what I do and want to get involved too, reach out! I’m here to help, always.”


Vice President of Internal Affairs: Laura Minnema

I’m a fifth year graduate student studying pharmacology and pain in the Comparative Biomedical Sciences Program. As VP-Internal I am committed to working to facilitate the success of individual GSA chapters.








Vice President of Academic Affairs: Urmila Adhikari

This is Urmila, a 3rd year Ph.D Student in Plant Pathology program. My research focuses on enhancing models for predicting SNB disease severity. I am interested in understanding quantitative resistance expressed to SNB by wheat and environmental factors affecting the component of resistance. It’s been a great pleasure working with GSA for the past two years. Now, as a VP of Academic Affairs, my role is to serve as a liaison of Research Recognition Committee. I work closely with the Graduate School in coordinating Graduate Research Symposium. I also serve as a GSA representative to the Administrative Board of the Graduate School. Please feel free to email me if you have any questions/concerns regarding GSA travel awards or GSA as a whole. I look forward to working with you all.


Vice President of Communication: Deveshwar Hariharan

I am Deveshwar, 2nd year Masters’ student and the research assistant at EcoPRT. My job entails developing algorithms in machine learning specifically for computer vision and artificial intelligence. Presently my research in on self-driving cars and maximizing the computational capability while minimizing the resource requirements while maintaining the performance and reliability. I am working on path detection for dynamic input systems and inter-vehicle communication. At GSA too I have the most cool job, I have to maintain the website and the social media handles in addition to working with CASE Committee to organize events for GSA. I also love photography, hiking, rock climbing and working out in general. This is my second year in GSA as the VP Communication, am looking forward to meeting you all at all the events that we organize.


VP of  Student Governance Relations: Lexie Malico

I am a Ph.D. Candidate in the Chemistry Department studying the biosynthesis of terpenes, chemical compounds that are made in nature that are pharmaceutically and industrially relevant. My research focuses on the development of high-throughput screening technologies in order to better engineer the pathways to access these small molecules. My role is to serve as a liaison between the GSA and Student Government to ensure that the needs of graduate students are being addressed. In this role, it is my goal to continue to improve awareness surrounding graduate student issues and develop solutions. I hope to advocate for all graduate students, so I invite feedback, questions, and suggestions from all students. Off-campus, I enjoy exploring new restaurants, hiking, and spending time with my incredibly handsome dog, Watson. I am excited to join the GSA executive board team for 2019/2020 and am looking forward to a great year.


Secretary: Emily Krzystowczyk

I am a second year PhD student in Chemical and Bio-molecular Engineering (CBE). My research revolves around chemical looping and how it applies to air separation. Our goal is to turn air separation, a multi-billion-dollar industry, into an entirely green process with a minimized energy penalty when compared to current processes.As the Secretary I record the minutes of the All Council and Executive board meetings and communicate with departmental chapters to ensure they maintain good standing and that our representative roster is up to date. I also serve as the executive liaison to the Teaching Effectiveness Committee which allows me to work with fellow graduate students to recognize the hard work of our outstanding graduate teachers and teaching assistants here at NC State. Outside of this, I enjoy playing and coaching soccer!


Treasurer: Josh Wheeler

Hello Everyone! I’m Josh Wheeler, a 3rd year Neuroscience graduate student in the Comparative Biomedical Sciences (CBS) Program. Part of my research is aimed at figuring out how compounds made by the skin cause itch and pain. The other part is figuring out why the face processes pain and itch differently than the rest of the body. For the past year I have been treasurer of the CBS-GSA. As treasurer I have been working to restore the CBS-GSA’s non-profit status. I have also been working out the best way for the CBS GSA to navigate the newer systems that have been put in place by NC State for the individual student organizations. As treasurer of a smaller GSA I have had to learn how to determine which events should/can be done with CBS-GSA funds so that we could maximize our student’s enjoyment from events on our limited budget. I feel that these skills I have picked up as treasurer for the CBS-GSA have made me well prepared for being treasurer for the GSA. Additionally, as treasurer, I am continuing to work on transparency in the GSA’s financial processes (where applicable). I look forward to working with everyone involved with the GSA next year!