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Academics and Programs

‘I Am a Proud Wolfpack Mom:’ College of Education Employee Celebrates Graduation of Son, Daughter From the College This May

Left to right: Greg Sinkovic, who works as a pastry chef; Gail Sinkovic, a human resources specialist in the NC State College of Education; Gabriella Sinkovic-Story '23MED and Garin Sinkovic '23

In 2010, Gabriella Sinkovic-Story ’23MED was the first member of her family to join the Wolfpack. She earned a bachelor’s degree in professional golf management, took a job with the College of Natural Resources’ Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management and enrolled in the NC State College of Education’s higher education administration program. When her younger brother, Garin Sinkovic ’23, started applying to colleges, he decided to follow in her footsteps.

“Once I got accepted into NC State, I knew this was where I was going to go, with Gabrielle already going there,” said Garin Sinkovic, an elementary education major. “And I knew the College of Education was going to be a really good, strong teaching program that I could be a part of. I’ve always wanted to be a teacher.”

With both children attending NC State, Gail Sinkovic and her husband, Greg, decided to move to the Raleigh area from Bowie, Maryland, in 2019. Greg continued his career as a pastry chef, while Gail searched for a job in human resources. With Gabriella’s help, she found one — in the NC State College of Education.

“I asked them about it,” Gail Sinkovic siad. “I didn’t want to invade their world, but it was a good match for me. I started temporarily. And I did that for a year and then, just in March, I became a full-time human resources specialist in the College of Education. I’m really happy about it.”

For over a year, the NC State College of Education was a fixture in their family’s life. In May however, only Gail will remain. Both Gabriella and Garin will graduate together with their respective degrees. 

“I am a proud Wolfpack mom,” said Gail Sinkovic. “I’ve got two kids that are graduates of NC State, so my husband and I are both so proud of both of them.”

Sinkovic-Story has already started on her next step. She recently accepted a position at Campbell University as its PGA Golf Management program director. There are only 17 such positions in the country and Sinkovic-Story is one of four women, as well as the youngest person, to hold such a role. 

“It was a pretty big jump,” Sinkovic-Story said.

But, after earning her master’s degree in the NC State College of Education, it was one she was prepared to make. 

“If I wanted to stay in the realm of working at one of these PGA universities, I felt like I needed to know how higher education worked,” Sinkovic-Story said. “The [master’s in higher education] administration] program has a very heavy diversity, equity and inclusion focus to it. So even just from that perspective, along with wellness and just understanding how to care for students in college, it was really helpful and eye opening.”

When Sinkovic-Story first applied to the higher education administration program, she felt she had to make the case for how it applied to golf management. But once enrolled, she said her professors were excited to explore the way the two fields intersected. Sinkovic-Story even had the opportunity to invite her fellow students over to NC State’s Lonnie Poole Golf Course to learn more about finance and administration.

“It’s been neat,” Sinkovic-Story said. “They’ve really taken me in and helped me use my strengths.”

When Sinkovic-Story was still working at NC State, Garin was a regular in her office. 

“She helped me out a lot when I was getting started freshman year, and it was definitely a big help to have a familiar face coming from Maryland,” Garin Sinkovic said.

But he soon settled into being an elementary education major, especially as he started his field experiences and student teaching.

“The time I spent observing in the classroom has been an amazing experience,” Garin Sinkovic said. “I loved how NC State’s program definitely prioritized getting us that experience.”

Neither Gabriella nor Gail were surprised to see Garin thrive in the classroom.

“He used to set up a classroom in his room,” Gail Sinkovic said. “And he was Mr. Sinkovic and he had us come in for class, and he had his room all set up with assignments.”

After graduation, Garin will teach third grade at Rogers Lane Elementary School in Raleigh, where he’ll have the opportunity to be the teacher he imagined he would be growing up.

“I’m just looking forward to getting my own classroom and getting my own group of kids and watching them grow,” Garin Sinkovic said. 

Gail will continue working at the College of Education. Like her children, she enjoys being in an environment where education is valued. 

“The best part of being in the College of Education right now is the exposure to a whole new world to me of higher education,” Gail Sinkovic said. “I consider myself a lifelong learner.”

While Gail will miss Gabriella and Garin being students at the College of Education, she is excited to see what her children do next and grateful for the time they were able to spend together in the College of Education.