Around Mason: Week of Dec. 1, 2020

Faculty/Staff Announcements

Have something to share? Submit an announcement from your unit using the online form.

Deadline is close of business Wednesday for inclusion in the following Tuesday's edition.

Virtual Holiday Donation Drive

The Staff Senate is sponsoring a virtual holiday and food donation drive to support organizations in our community. Instead of using drop-boxes to collect items on campus this year, we encourage the Mason community to use the contactless and virtual donation options offered by each charitable organization.

Causes and organizations include the Patriot Pantry, Student Emergency Fund, INOVA Children's Hospital, and more. View the complete list.

If you would like to drop off your donation in-person, please refer to the organization’s guidelines for accepting donations/items.

Parking and Transportation is offering a citation credit in exchange for charitable contributions made to these organizations. Find out more details by visiting their holiday donation page.

Contact with questions.

Staff Senate December Meeting: Anti-Racism and Inclusive Excellence Task Force

The Staff Senate will host Shernita Rochelle Parker, assistant vice president for Human Resources/Payroll, and Wendi Manuel-Scott, professor of history in the School of Integrative Studies, to discuss updates from the Anti-Racism and Inclusive Excellence (ARIE) Task Force.

December Staff Senate General Meeting
Wednesday, Dec. 2
10 – 11 a.m.
General Meeting will follow from 11 a.m. to noon
Zoom Meeting:
Passcode: SS123
Call in: 301-715-8592 or 267-831-0333
Webinar ID: 976 1503 4925 / Passcode: 572793

Submit a question for the guest speakers using the online form.

All are welcome to attend Staff Senate general meetings. Read more about the virtual general meeting format.

Contact for additional information.

Staff Senate Town Hall on Spring 2021 Plans

The Mason Staff Senate will host a virtual town hall with university officials to discuss operational plans for the spring semester. This will be a valuable opportunity to share information, feedback, questions, or concerns.

Tuesday, Dec. 8
10 – 11 a.m.
Zoom Meeting:
Passcode: SS123
Call in: 301-715-8592 or 267-831-0333
Webinar ID: 939 8094 0056 / Passcode: 624671

The panelists are scheduled to include:

  • Carol Kissal, Senior Vice President, Administration and Finance
  • Lester Arnold, Vice President, Human Resources and Payroll
  • William Dracos, Associate Vice President, Business Services
  • Julie Zobel, Assistant Vice President, Safety, Emergency, and Enterprise Risk Management
  • David Farris, Executive Director, Safety and Emergency Management, Environmental Health and Safety

The senate will collect questions/comments from staff prior to the session. Submit questions for consideration by Wednesday, Dec. 2.

The Staff Senate represents all classified and non-student wage employees at George Mason University. Working closely with university administration, we address concerns that have an impact on the quality of work-life for the Mason community. The work of the senate is accomplished through open and continuous communication with its constituents.

All are welcome to attend. For questions, contact

Arlington Campus Library Post-Thanksgiving Hours

The Arlington Campus Library has adjusted its hours of operation through Friday, Dec. 18:

Monday/Wednesday: Closed. Contactless pickup available from noon to 6 p.m.
Tuesday/Thursday: Noon – 6 p.m.
Friday–Sunday: Closed

Requests for materials can be submitted at Contact 703-993-8188 or with questions.

A Chanticleer Christmas

Join the Center for the Arts on Dec. 5 at 8 p.m. in its tradition of ushering in the holiday season with peace, joy, and a cappella with a specially-recorded digital performance by Chanticleer.

With their signature harmonic blend of 12 male voices ranging from soprano to bass, this festive holiday program features American hymns, Christmas carols from around the world, Gospel melodies, and Renaissance motets. Since Chanticleer began recording in 1981, it has sold more than one million albums and won two Grammy® Awards.

Access passes are on sale now. Only one access pass is needed per household for each concert. When selecting your access pass, you may also select your preferred price (pay-what-you-wish between $15–$45, in increments of $5).

Before the event at 7:15 p.m., subscribers from the 2019–20 season, as well as current Friends of the Center for the Arts ($150+) and Friends of the Hylton Center ($150+), are invited to an exclusive Artists in Conversation. Details for how to join the conversation will be emailed prior to the performance.

Learn more about this virtual performance. Contact for assistance.

Mental Health First Aid

The Center for the Advancement of Well-Being and Student Health Services are pleased to offer Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) Training to members of the university community.

This eight-hour training provides participants with basic skills to help someone experiencing a mental health or substance use-related crisis. MHFA teaches about risk factors and warning signs for mental health and addiction concerns. The session covers depression and mood disorders, anxiety disorders, trauma, psychosis, and substance use disorders.

Training occurs over two separate days. Registration is open for an upcoming Zoom training on Dec. 3 and 10 from 1 to 5 p.m. each day.

Register here. Contact Katie Clare at with questions.

Hylton Center's 10th Anniversary Commemorative Ornament Now Available

2020 marks 10 years since the Hylton Performing Arts Center first opened its doors to serve as a creative commons for the vibrant and culturally rich community of greater Prince William County, Virginia.

This year also marks the completion of the Hylton Center’s new Education and Rehearsal Wing. The Hylton Center is celebrating both milestones with a special 2020 commemorative ornament.

Celebrate your favorite Hylton Center memory with this exclusive anniversary edition. Add it to an existing collection, or give it as the perfect gift for the arts lover in your life.

Your purchase of a 2020 ornament ($25) supports the Hylton Center’s Education Initiatives, which expand access to programs for learners of all ages.

Purchase your ornament today. Contact Jeremy Stern at with questions.

Vanpool Interest Meeting

If you are contemplating your commute back to work, see if vanpooling works for you.

Join Sarah Mandel from Commute With Enterprise as she outlines how vanpooling works, along with James Davenport of Transform I-66 for an I-66 project update.

Vanpooling is subsidized by Mason for full-time faculty and staff up to the IRS limit of $270/month. This means your commuting cost could be zero.

The session will be hosted on Zoom on Tuesday, Dec. 8, at noon. Register here.

Questions? Contact Parking and Transportation at