Maryland Applied Graduate Engineering Staff


George Syrmos

2105 JM Patterson, College Park, MD 20742
301-405-3633 |




College: B.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE), University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB); M.S. in ECE, UCSB; Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering, University of Maryland

Works with: Directs Maryland Applied Graduate Engineering (MAGE) addressing the continuing education needs of working engineers and technical professionals by providing quality graduate engineering programs while promoting the visibility of the A. James Clark School of Engineering and UMD.

Profile: George joined UMD in 1990 as an adjunct faculty in the ECE Department. In 1996, he was appointed as the Education Coordinator to the Army Research Laboratory's Federated Laboratory Program. In 1999, he was appointed Director of the Professional Master of Engineering Program. In 2006, he was promoted to Executive Director of the Office of Advanced Engineering Education (OAEE), the predecessor of MAGE, and in 2019, he was promoted to Assistant Dean for Continuing Education.


Director of Admissions, Marketing and Communications

Vinette Brown-Darlington

2213 JM Patterson, College Park, MD 20742
301-405-1098 |




College: B.A. in Political Science, Virginia State University; M.S. in Environmental Sciences, University of Maryland Global Campus; Masters of Business Administration, University of Maryland Global Campus

Works with: As the Director of Admissions, Communications and Marketing my primary responsibilities include, but are not limited to managing a multi-channel communications strategy, enrollment management, recruitment, and admission processes for MAGE.

Profile: A proud HBCU Alum of Virginia State University, Vinette joined MAGE in 2010 as the Coordinator for Outreach and Communications where she supported the planning, development, and coordination of both internal and external communications projects and outreach events. Prior to joining MAGE, Vinette worked as Communications Specialist at the University of Maryland Global Campus for the National Leadership Institute. Vinette has two dogs, Coco and Jewel, and loves to take long walks with them. 


ASSOCIATE Director for Academic Affairs

Sonja Dietrich

2105 JM Patterson, College Park, MD 20742
301-405-1101 |




College: B.S. in Government (major) and Asian Studies (minor), Franklin and Marshall College; M.S.Ed. in Higher Education Administration, University of Pennsylvania

Works with:  Current students in the Master of Engineering and Graduate Certificate in Engineering programs regarding any escalating academic difficulties, course issues, or faculty issues; ENPM Course Instructors regarding course scheduling and development and ENPM Faculty Content Advisors regarding program curriculum development.

Profile: Sonja has been with MAGE since 2014, after originally starting her work at UMD College Park in 2012 as the Graduate Student Life Coordinator in The Stamp Student Union. Prior to that, she worked with M.S. and Ph.D. students in Engineering at the University of California Irvine and in undergraduate admissions at Thomas Jefferson University. Outside of work, she spends most of her time wrangling her kids to and from their various extracurricular activities or exploring new restaurants and activities in the DMV area!


Assistant Director for Business Affairs

Ciara Diaz

2105 JM Patterson, College Park, MD 20742
301-405-2355 |




College: B.S. in Communication Arts, Austin Peay State University; M.S. in Management, University of Maryland Global Campus

Works with: Ensuring financial direction within MAGE by providing fiscal leadership and expense management. Ciara is responsible for day to day business operations, fiscal reporting, as well as departmental forecasting and budget management. Ciara is the MAGE human resource contact, and provides HR advising and policy determinations related to hiring and other HR matters. 

Profile: Ciara joined MAGE in 2021 from Facilities Management, where she worked for four years in business management supporting athletic facilities on campus. Prior to coming to the University of Maryland, College Park, Ciara spent her career managing class A multi-family properties in Maryland and Virginia, including fiscal operations and human resource management. Ciara is originally from Dutchess County in New York state, and has lived in Baltimore with her husband and two dogs since 2014. Ciara enjoys cooking, walking her dogs and vacationing in the Shenandoah Valley.


Program Manager for admission and recruitment

Caitlin Gover

2105 JM Patterson, College Park, MD 20742
301-405-7712 |




College: B.S. in Biological Sciences, University of Maryland; M.B.A., University of Maryland Global Campus 

Works with: Students interested in the Master of Engineering and Graduate Certificate in Engineering programs. Specifically, works with those interested in a professional degree in aerospace engineering, chemical & biomolecular engineering, civil & environmental engineering, cybersecurity, electronic packaging, fire protection engineering, materials science & engineering, project management, and reliability engineering.

Profile: Caitlin joined the admissions team in 2018 with 3 years of prior experience in higher education admissions. Her previous professional experience includes working with military and veteran applicants at University of Maryland Global Campus, and working in Graduate Admissions at Plymouth State University in New Hampshire. Caitlin grew up in New Hampshire and returned to the state after finishing her bachelor's program, but she moved back to Maryland in 2016. She loves spending time with her dog and 2 cats, going to the beach and concerts, and learning new line dances.


Senior Academic Advisor

Stephanie Elcock

2105 JM Patterson, College Park, MD 20742
301-314-2196 |


College: B.A. in Sociology, University of Connecticut; M.S. in School Counseling, Mercy College

Works with: Current students in the Master of Engineering and Graduate Certificate in Engineering programs regarding any course registration, course selection, course permissions, course substitution/approval and 10-course curriculum planning needs. 

Profile: Stephanie joined MAGE in June of 2022 and has been working in higher education since 2013. Prior to joining MAGE, Stephanie worked as an Academic Advisor at CUNY Bronx Community College with the program ASAP (Accelerated Study in Associate Programs) for four and a half years. She loves having the opportunity to help support students throughout their academic journey, to the ultimate goal of graduation. She is new to the DMV area, moving from Westchester County, New York and is excited to explore this new city. Stephanie enjoys Coldstone ice cream, game nights and spending time with family and friends.



Anne Bongermino

2213 JM Patterson, College Park, MD 20742
301-300-4839 |



College: B.S. in Communication Management and Design (major) with a concentration in Instructional Technologies, Business Administration (minor), and Psychology (minor), Ithaca College

Works with: MAGE Faculty to optimize course design and technology

Profile: Anne joined MAGE in November 2021. Prior to joining MAGE, she spent five years working as an instructional designer at a healthcare technology and services startup company creating new hire and client-facing training materials and facilitating in-person and virtual learning. She also has experience working in the online learning department of Clarkson Graduate School supporting faculty in their course delivery. Anne grew up in Upstate New York and moved to the DMV in 2016. She plays Roller Derby and enjoys spending time with her husband and two cats.



Heather Markle

2213 JM Patterson, College Park, MD 20742
301-405-6824  |




College: B.A. in English, University of Maryland; M.A. in Publications Design, University of Baltimore

Works with: MAGE and Clark School staff and faculty to promote our programs to potential students and communicate MAGE news, updates and policies to current students, faculty and staff. Works with the MAGE website, social media channels, digital marketing and print pieces.

Profile: Heather has been working in marketing and communications at the University of Maryland since 2013, first for the Department of Physics and then for the College of Arts & Humanities, joining MAGE in 2021. Her background includes writing, editing, print production and project management for businesses in Baltimore and D.C. When she was a student at UMD, Heather worked at the climbing wall and the Writing Center, but that was many years ago now! In her free time, Heather runs and hikes and cares for her two dogs and husband.