2016 Family of the Year: The Enriques!


Each year, Orientation and Family Programs and Services awards one family with the Alan and Sally Merten Family of the Year Award, which recognizes the important role that families play in their student’s experience at Mason.

The 2016 Family of the Year Award went to the Enrique family. Risa Enrique, a freshman, kinesiology major, nominated her mother Jill, and her father, Carlos to receive the award. When out-of-state tuition made it difficult for Risa to realize her dreams at Mason, the family decided to sell their home of almost four years in Orlando, Florida and relocate to Fredericksburg, Virginia. Below is an excerpt from Risa’s essay about her family:

“People called us crazy for leaving the Sunshine state, especially considering the cold temperatures that will be here in the coming weeks. My parents were courageous enough to encourage this change in our family. When they speak of George Mason, the pride that they have for getting a child into this school is enormous. They know the weight that the name of GMU carries, for both academic and social reasons, and love to tell people about how great this school is any chance they get. I have not met any students here at Mason, or elsewhere, whose parents put this much on the line for their child’s education. They left all familiarity, moved to the unknown, and started new all for the sake of being a Patriot, and they haven’t looked back since.”

Almost 2,500 students and family members participated in this year’s Family Weekend events, making it our largest Family Weekend to date! Highlights of the weekend include Mason Madness, bus tours across the Metro DC area, Sunday brunch at Ike’s, and more. Check out our recap video here or our Facebook page for photos and highlights from the weekend.

We hope you can join us for next year’s Family Weekend, which will be held November 10-12, 2017!

Lindsey Conner
Graduate Assistant
Orientation and Family Programs and Services