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Alumni Spotlight: Mica Swyers (’04)

June 13, 2017 / Catherine Nicholas / Blog

After graduating in 2004, Mica Swyers went with much of her GSGIS class to UVA, where she majored in French and Media Studies.  Afterwards, she migrated to the windswept plains of Illinois where she got not one but two Master’s Degrees, one in French Linguistics and one in Teaching English as a Second Language.  Twist ending: she now works as a software engineer in the Bay Area.  Please note the title of her 2016 Alumni Showcase presentation in the photo.

After her second master’s, Mica decided she’d had her fill of academia, and in the fall of 2013, she left her icy Midwestern ivory tower for a fellowship at Hackbright Academy in San Francisco.  Hackbright’s rigorous program prepares women to enter the male-dominated field of software engineering.  Mica doesn’t mess around, and she found a job shortly after completing her fellowship at Eventbrite, where happily works now in spam and fraud prevention.

Mica has been described as “an aggressive taker-on of hobbies,” and among those hobbies are knitting (yes, she can make a sweater), baking (she’s currently baking a dessert from every state), travel (recently Japan and Korea), weightlifting, and scaring people with face swap on Snapchat.  Mica married Harrison Mebane, another 2004 grad in 2013.  Check out their record of the road trip they took in lieu of a big wedding here (  They live in San Francisco.

1) Favorite GSGIS memory: GSGIS idol auditions. What we all lacked in talent, we made up for in blind enthusiasm.

2) Favorite Alumni Showcase moment: The mature part of me wants to say “reconnecting with so many people I hadn’t seen in a long time.” The vain part of me says “when a student asked to take a selfie with me!”

3) Favorite place to visit in Richmond: Sticky Rice. I always get the Godzirra roll and a bucket o’ tots.

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