Student Affairs Graduate Association (SAGA)

The Student Affairs Graduate Association (SAGA) is a registered student organization exclusive to GVSU graduate students pursuing a Master's in Higher Education.

SAGA strives to empower graduate students to contribute to the enrichment of their education and program through active scholarship, community building, and professional networking, and to uphold the mission and values of GVSU and the College of Education and Community Innovation in all its functions and programming.

Some of the opportunities open to members of SAGA include social events, professional development opportunities, CSAL orientation events, and community outreach opportunities in the greater Grand Rapids and Grand Valley communities.

In addition to these internal opportunities, SAGA--through the Graduate Student Association (GSA)--provides its members with financial assistance when attending conferences having to do with higher education to students in the CSAL program. Guidelines for funding are determined by SAGA and the Graduate Student Association (GSA).

2023 SAGA E-Board Members


Jenna Mazurek

Jenna Mazurek

Email: [email protected]

Jenna graduated from Grand Valley State University in 2022 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and Exercise Science with an emphasis in Health & Fitness Instruction. While at Grand Valley State University, Jenna worked in the Admissions Office as a tour guide, telecounselor, and front desk student assistant. She was also a proud member of Delta Gamma Fraternity, served on the Panhellenic Council, and was involved with Psi Chi Honors Fraternity. Jenna is currently a Master of Education in Higher Education student in the College Student Affairs Leadership program and serves as the Programming Graduate Assistant in the Office of Student Life. In her free time, Jenna works at a make your own candle shop in East Grand Rapids, enjoys reading books, and going to the beach in Grand Haven.

Executive Vice President

Nicole Von Oesen

Nicole Von Oesen

Email: [email protected]

Nicole graduated from Grand Valley State University in 2022 with a degree in German Teaching and Applied Linguistics. In undergrad Nicole was in Alpha Sigma Tau sorority, had two on-campus jobs and studied abroad twice. She loved her time at Grand Valley and because of her teaching background and work in the admissions office, she knew she wanted to stay here and continue pursuing education at a higher level. Nicole is now studying Higher Education with an emphasis in College Student Affairs Leadership. She has a graduate assistantship in the CECI Undergraduate Advising Center where she advises students in Criminal Justice and helps them find their path to graduation! In her free time Nicole enjoys playing golf with her boyfriend, hanging out with friends, and cuddling her cat, Artie. 

Vice President of Finance

Obed Boateng

Obed Boateng

Email: [email protected]

Obed obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Business and Entrepreneurship from the University of Energy and Natural Resources in Ghana in 2020. During his time in Ghana, Obed served as a Teaching Assistant, actively engaged in student leadership activities, and volunteered for projects focused on enriching the diverse experiences of students from various backgrounds. Currently, at Grand Valley, Obed is pursuing a Master's degree in College Students Affairs and Leadership and has an assistantship at the College of Education and Community Innovation (CECI) Undergraduate Advising Center. In this role, Obed leverages his expertise to provide invaluable guidance and support to undergraduate students to enhance their overall academic experience. Beyond his academic pursuits, Obed enjoys hanging out with friends, engaging in physical fitness activities at the gym, and dedicating himself to research within his areas of interest.


Vice President of Programming

Matt Gibson

Dylan Barron

Email: [email protected]

Dylan graduated from Siena Heights University in 2021 with a major in Communications while also minoring in Criminal Justice and Theatre. While at Siena, Dylan was involved in many things including Habitat for Humanity, Costume Club, Student Programming Committee, Criminal Justice Club, and a supervisor for the Orientation Leaders. He also is a proud member of Pi Lambda Phi Fraternity. Dylan is currently a Master of Education in Higher Education student in the College Student Affairs Leadership program and serves as the Graduate Assistant for Fraternity and Sorority Life in the Office of Student Life. In his free time, Dylan enjoys walks in nature and playing video games. 

SAGA Faculty Advisor

Karyn Rabourn

Paul Bylsma

Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership and Counseling

Email: [email protected]

B.A. Calvin College; M.Ed. Grand Valley State University; Ph.D. Michigan State University.

Dr. Paul Bylsma joined the faculty in August 2023. Prior to coming to GVSU Paul held roles in enrollment management, alumni relations, and supervising pre-service social studies student teachers. Paul holds a Doctorate in Higher, Adult, and Lifelong Education from Michigan State University. Paul's research utilizes sociomaterial theories to explore teaching, learning, knowledge, and practice in a higher education context as a complex encounter between people, space, and time. His recently-finished dissertation illuminates the hidden curriculum in undergraduate business education as a formative influence on students' embodied educational experiences.

Outside of academia, Paul's interests include reading, brewing, working and playing in the yard, and sustaining a household with his partner and two children.

Paul teaches courses in the Adult & Higher Education (AHE) and College Student Affairs Leadership (CSAL) programs, including The Adult Learner (EDH 648), Materials and Methods for Adult and Continuing Education (EDH 650), Theories of College Student Development (EDH 647), College Students in the United States (EDH 652), and advises master’s projects and theses (EDH 693/695). 

Page last modified October 4, 2023