Patricia J. Grant, Ed.D.
Senior Associate Dean of the Undergraduate Program
Patricia Grant is passionate about student success, integrating Jesuit values into the Undergraduate Program, and creating meaningful student experiences. At Georgetown McDonough, Grant has revamped the undergraduate advising structure; expanded career trek opportunities; laid the groundwork for a young alumni advisory group; contributed to curricular innovations such as the Entrepreneurship Fellows Program and First-Year Seminar Program; and created two diversity and inclusion initiatives for incoming students, including one that partners with PwC.
Grant joined Georgetown McDonough in 2010 with more than 15 years of experience in undergraduate, graduate, and executive education program administration. She has taught courses at the University of Pennsylvania, the College of New Jersey, Temple University, and Georgetown. Additionally, she worked in the Office of Executive Education at Penn to develop and launch six master’s and doctoral programs. She holds an Ed.D. and M.S.Ed. from the University of Pennsylvania and an A.B. from Cornell University.
Monija Amani, Ed.D.
Senior Assistant Dean and Director of Global Programs
With nearly two decades of experience in academic and student affairs, Monija Amani has been involved in the development and implementation of curricular and co-curricular programs including student disability and advocacy. She holds a master's degree in rehabilitation counseling and a doctoral degree in higher education administration from The George Washington University.
Prior to joining the McDonough team, she worked at The George Washington University where she coordinated the overall delivery of masters and education specialist degree programs as well as graduate certificates in traumatic brain injury. She has taught courses in administration of higher education and qualitative research design and methodology. She also serves as a committee member on doctoral dissertations and engages in applied research related to global education and student development. Amani is an avid reader and enjoys jogging and cooking for family and friends.
Advises current students: D- G
Daniela Brancaforte, Ph.D.
Senior Assistant Dean and Director of Strategic Initiatives & Interdisciplinary Programs
Daniela joined McDonough in 2014 where she promotes undergraduate research, entrepreneurship, and interdisciplinary learning. With almost 20 years of professional experience as a consultant, academic advisor and adjunct professor, Brancaforte provides leadership through strategic initiatives that incorporate Georgetown's Jesuit values including social justice and diversity programming. She teaches a First Year Seminar on the intersection of business and anthropology as well as a course Commerce Across Cultures. Brancaforte received a Ph.D. in socio-cultural anthropology from Princeton University and a B.A. in Italian and Anthropology from Bryn Mawr College.
Prior to arriving at Georgetown, Brancaforte worked as a social science research consultant, co-founded and managed a service-disabled veteran-owned small business for 10 years. Her doctoral work was based on her qualitative research of U.S. military culture and the challenges experienced by military spouses, which she continued through her consulting work improving programs for veterans and military families. Brancaforte has lived and studied extensively in Europe and Latin America, speaks Spanish, German, and Italian, and enjoys traveling and visiting other countries. In her free time, she plays soccer, spoils her rescue dog, enjoys time with her family, travels and reads as much as possible.
Advises current students: O-R, Y, Z
Rebecca Cassidy, MBA
Senior Assistant Dean, Director of the Office of Professional and Leadership Development
Rebecca Cassidy has more than 10 years of experience coaching, training, and advising business students and mid-career professionals. She is the director of the Undergraduate Office of Professional Development, which offers career advising, programming, and internship and job placement assistance for Georgetown McDonough's more than 1,300 students. She also is a certified Global Career Development Facilitator.
Cassidy has extensive experience in corporate, nonprofit, and academic settings, gained while working both in Tokyo, Japan, and Washington, D.C. She earned an MBA from George Washington University and a B.A. in psychology from Binghamton University.
Deborah Coburn, M.Ed.
Senior Assistant Dean and Director of Advising
Prior to joining Georgetown McDonough, Deborah Coburn worked in financial aid, admissions, and academic advising. Coburn earned a B.A. in history and public relations from Syracuse University. She earned an M.Ed. in counseling in student affairs from University of California, Los Angeles.
She is a huge sports fan, especially college basketball, and enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with family and friends.
Advises current students: A-C
Julian C. Haas, M.Ed.
Julian Haas joined Georgetown University in 2014 working first in the LGBTQ Resource Center. Prior to Georgetown, he worked and taught courses at the Pennsylvania State University. He has experience in recruiting; leadership development; diversity, equity, and inclusion consulting; and curricular and program development.
Haas earned a B.A. in Sociology and an M.Ed. in Higher Education from the Pennsylvania State University. He is currently completing an MBA at the McDonough School of Business.
In his current role Julian delivers high-impact, transformative learning experiences focused on advising the whole student by integrating well-being issues into academic contexts.
Julian is happy to call Georgetown home and looks forward to an exciting semester. He is passionate about social justice, cross-cultural experiences, intersectional dialogue and exploration, and empowering others. In his spare time, he enjoys camping, traveling, and mentoring LGBTQ youth in the greater Washington DC area.
Advises current students: M-O
Daniel Minot, MAT, M.Ed.
Senior Associate Director
Daniel Minot has nearly 10 years of professional experience in teaching, advising, and counseling, supporting a diverse population of students at both the high school and university levels. He is especially passionate about working with first-generation students through the high school to college transition.
Minot holds a B.A. from Washington University in St. Louis, where he studied political science and Spanish, and lived abroad in Chile. Upon graduation, Minot was accepted to Teach for America, where he taught high school Spanish while completing an M.A. in teaching from American University. More recently, Minot earned an M.Ed. in school counseling from George Washington University, where he also worked as an undergraduate academic advisor in the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences. Prior to joining Georgetown, Minot served as a college counselor at KIPP DC, supporting high school students with the college application, admission, and financial aid processes. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, playing tennis, and spending time with friends and family.
Advises current students: S-X
Sara Skillman, M.A.
Sara Skillman has nearly 10 years of experience in higher education. She joined Georgetown University in 2008, working first for the Office of Global Education, where she partnered with undergraduate students involved in study abroad opportunities, before coming to Georgetown McDonough in 2016.
She earned a B.A. in French and animal behavior from Franklin & Marshall College and an M.A. in higher education administration from George Washington University. Skillman speaks French and has studied abroad in France, South Africa, and Japan. In her spare time, she enjoys exploring the District and planning her next international trip.
Advises current students:
Justin C. Smith, M.S.Ed.
Assistant Dean & Director of Student Success
Justin Smith has over 10 years of experience working in higher education in a variety of capacities. Smith provides leadership and strategic vision for student support initiatives through carefully crafted assessment strategies and an outcomes-based approach. In addition to advising, he oversees several institutional priorities and major projects in his role as Director of Student Success.
Smith started his career at Georgetown in 2012 as the Director of Orientation. In that position, he transformed the marketing and communications strategies for New Student Orientation (NSO). In addition, he made several enhancements to their leadership training while providing an overhaul of their staffing model. Through his continued advocacy for an inclusive model of first-year experience, he transformed the position into the current model of Orientation, Transition and Family Engagement, revamping Welcome Weeks into its current Georgetown Weeks of Welcome (GWOW) model and spearheading the transformation of Parents Weekend into the more inclusive Family Weekend model. In 2015, Smith moved to the School of Nursing & Health Studies as an Assistant Dean in their Academic Affairs unit to oversee the pre-licensure nursing students. There he worked very closely with their faculty to successfully launch several key initiatives including a new graduate program, the expansion of study abroad opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students, and the creation of a values-based pre-orientation program for students interested in working in healthcare with marginalized populations, aptly named CURA.
Prior to working at Georgetown, Smith served as Director of Orientation and as Associate Director of First Year Experience at the University of Arkansas. He served in multiple roles in Orientation and Residential Life at the University at Albany, SUNY where he also received his B.A. and M.S.Ed.
Advises current students: