George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

Mason's tech programs helped build his Amazon career

September 28, 2019   /   by Damian Cristodero

Jason Paul Pate said a combination of classroom and online classes helped him manage his work obligations at Amazon. Mason also helped him build his professional network. Photo provided.

More than 500 George Mason University alumni work for Amazon at various locations around the country and the world, many for Amazon Web Services (AWS), a subsidiary that offers cloud computing services and has a major hub in Northern Virginia.

Jason Paul Pate, BS information technology ’20, is a systems analyst and one of several Mason alumni we will feature in the coming weeks who work for the tech giant.

Those include Brandon Mohabir, a cloud support associate, BS information technology ’15; Taylor Cacciotti, a data center technician, information technology '19; Cameron Isaac, an executive design recruiter, BS conflict analysis and resolution ’11; Prinkle Lopes, a cloud support associate, MS information systems ’18; and Rao Ahmad Rahil, a cloud support associate, MS telecommunications ’18; and Rajitha Devabhaktuni, a cloud security engineer, MS computer engineering ’16.

When Pate heard that Amazon will build a second headquarters in Northern Virginia, one of the first things he thought about were the job opportunities that will be created for area professionals and college graduates.

“It’s rare to have an industry leader in your backyard, and Mason students have a golden opportunity to answer the call for Amazon,” says the information technology major. “There’s a lot of motivated young people coming out of Mason right now who I think are definitely going to jump on the opportunity to work with Amazon.”

Pate came to Mason after a four-year stint in the U.S. Marine Corps as an aviation electrician assigned to the airfield in Quantico, Virginia. Friends who had graduated and taken classes at Mason spoke highly of the institution.

“And after some digging and long-term thinking about my career, I decided Mason could be the best opportunity for me,” Pate says.

Pate has used his time at Mason to enhance his skills and build his professional network. He did this by taking a combination of classroom and online classes and participating in the Theta Tau coed engineering fraternity on campus.

He says the online classes help accommodate his work schedule.

Pate is a systems analyst in the AWS Amazon Intelligence Initiative. The initiative is an accelerated onboarding and technical rotational program launched for engineers and technical leaders, who will deliver software services and infrastructure to the U.S. government.

“Attending Mason has allowed me to learn how to balance a large workload efficiently,” Pate says. “It has allowed me to approach a problem from multiple perspectives and evaluate them before tackling issues. I feel like I definitely got out of it what I wanted.”

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