Nico Roland-Chicvara

I had two classes with Professor Barlas. In both these classes—Understanding Islam, and Race & Colonialism—she pushed me to achieve deep levels of critical thinking which greatly elevated my writing skills. The papers I wrote in her class represent some of the heights of my academic achievements while at Ithaca college.

Professor Barlas was the first professor to suggest that I pursue a graduate degree and that she would be happy to write a letter for me in the future. Two years after graduation I took her up on that offer and am now completing my MBA at Portland State University. While I changed course a bit from my studies in culture and politics, one of the unique skillsets I have brought with me into business school have been informed by my time in Asma’s classes where I learned to think, read, and write with a much more holistic lens that is hopefully less blind to many of the systemic injustices and biases prevalent in the world today. I hope I can bring some of my learnings from Asma into my career going forward.

Asma was an academic inspiration and mentor and helped me on my path to where I am now.

Many thanks and best wishes for her upcoming retirement!


Nico Roland-Chicvara

Class of 2016

Then: 2014 – my junior year at Ithaca College at Ithaca Falls with my dad.
Now: 2019 – graduate student at Portland State University – graduating June 2020!