Collaborate with graduate business students, university administrators and Austin business leaders

The Graduate Business Student Association (GBSA) promotes increased awareness and access to career opportunities in management, helps grow students’ personal networks, develops leadership skills and promotes the benefits of postgraduate business education.

For additional details regarding the GBSA's structure, objectives and guiding principles, refer to the GBSA Constitution and Bylaws.  gbsa.msb [at] (Email the GBSA)  |  Join the GBSA Facebook Group  |  Review the Meeting Minutes


Fernando Granthon, President

Master of Business Administration

Fernando is originally from Miami, Florida. He joined the United States Marine Corps right after high school in 2000 and completed a four-year enlistment as a personnel clerk. He was attached to a helicopter squadron that was part of a deployment in support of NATO operations.

After his enlistment, Fernando's military experience helped him transition to civilian positions in the human resources field in North Carolina. 

In 2010, Fernando returned to Miami, Florida, and pursued his bachelor's in History and Political Science at Barry University.

Fernando Granthon

 As a student at Barry University, Fernando was selected to represent Barry University at the Florida Legislature. During his time at Barry University, Fernando became involved in Miami politics and participated in campaigns. He was even a panelist on Univision's Sunday talk show "Al Punto" in 2012.

Fernando's experience in military, corporate and political environments motivated him to pursue a Master of Business Administration. He hopes to be able to be a bridge between business innovators and policymakers.


Patrick Valadka, Vice President

Master of Business Administration

Patrick Valadka is a curious problem solver fascinated by the intersection of data analysis and business intelligence. He constructs innovative processes to merge the qualitative understanding of what benefits the end user with the technical strategy necessary to develop an effective solution. Utilizing his formal business education and diverse professional experience, he empowers organizational leadership and external stakeholders to make more informed, powerful and actionable decisions.

After graduating from St. Edward’s University with an undergraduate degree in Finance, with honors, Patrick has helped transform data processes in a number of roles related to financial analysis, auditing and organizational research.

Patrick Valadka

In order to bolster his exposure to the concepts of new venture creation and managing dynamic organizations, he enrolled in the St. Edward’s University MBA program, which is fundamentally focused on entrepreneurship, the importance of analytics and pursuing disruptive innovations in the technology sector. As GBSA Vice President, he has initiated beneficial improvements in the organizational processes and helped facilitate others’ interpersonal connections within the St. Edward’s University MBA program.

Throughout his MBA studies, Patrick has developed a passion for technological entrepreneurship and the analytical processes necessary to help growing organizations thrive. His primary goal is to derive meaningful insights within a dynamic company, as well as within the Austin business ecosystem.


Sterling Loza, Treasurer

Master of Business Administration

A native Austinite, Sterling Loza received a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from St. Edward’s University and is currently enrolled in the MBA program.

Upon receiving his undergraduate degree, Sterling launched an e-commerce company with his younger brother. After realizing how difficult and rewarding entrepreneurship is, Sterling decided to continue his education by earning an MBA. His classes have helped him gain a better understanding of business and have improved his proficiency with numbers, Excel and optimization.

Sterling is continuing his entrepreneurial endeavors by helping other startups better understand their finances and build roadmaps for future growth. With his eyes set on international investment and dynamic company growth in small, medium and large businesses, Sterling’s goals are to better himself and his community by engaging in Austin’s startup scene. He also hopes to better the local St. Edward’s community by being an efficient and proactive GBSA officer.


Christine Saenz, Marketing and Social Media Coordinator

Master of Business Administration

Christine is currently working as a braillist for Austin Independent School District in the Special Education Department, tasked with providing braille and digitally produced tactile graphics to visually impaired students throughout Austin.

In addition to her role as braillist, Christine is a student in the MBA program and plans to graduate in May 2018.

Previously, Christine worked for a local real estate company, updating their website, providing training to new real estate agents and managing the marketing strategy under the role of Quality Assurance and Compliance Officer.

Christine Saenz

Prior to enrolling at St. Edward’s University, she finished her undergraduate degree in Education from LeTourneau University, graduating summa cum laude with a 4.0.

In her downtime, Christine spends her free time with a vibrant, sticky-fingered toddler, a 10-year-old techie (future programmer), a 14-year-old fashionista (sweetest teenager ever!) and a quirky, unique husband. She also likes to visit her family in Corpus Christi. Other than her family, her passion is technology and everything that it entails. She is excited to see what can be accomplished using new technology in the next 10 years.


Aaron Simpson, Secretary

Master of Business Administration

Aaron is currently an entrepreneur with a startup company focused on social, environmental and global responsibility. The startup requires skills he gained as a graduate student in The Bill Munday School of Business.

Before beginning the graduate program, Aaron served in the U.S. Army, completing two foreign tours. Through his service, he acquired skills in leadership, personnel management and foreign policy.

Aaron also has experience in operational management and development from several Fortune 500 companies.

Aaron Simpson

While in Colorado, Aaron was the president of the University of Colorado – Colorado Springs Family Development Center, as well as a volunteer manager for Project Healing Waters.

As a graduate student, Aaron serves as an active member of the Hilltop Student Veteran Association Executive Board, and recently, he served as the program assistant for the Austin-area Supportive Services for Veteran Families. Aaron earned his undergraduate degree in Geography from the University of North Texas. In his free time, Aaron is an avid brewer, outdoor enthusiast and equestrian.