Around Mason: Week of March 2, 2021


Faculty/Staff Announcements

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

Campus Updates

Virtual Staff Appreciation Event

Take advantage of Mason's "Meeting-Free Week" to attend the Virtual Staff Appreciation Event on Wednesday, March 10, 1:30–3 p.m. This event is open to classified staff and non-student wage employees.

The Staff Senate has partnered with District Trivia to host a fun game of trivia. Even if you are not caught up on your Mason facts, this event will have questions for all, covering many genres.

While the usual in-person refreshments cannot be provided this year, the Staff Senate Events Committee has selected a few easy recipes for snacks and mocktails that can be prepared and enjoyed during the event.

This is a family-friendly event, appropriate for all ages. If you are teleworking, children (and pets) are welcomed.

RSVP by Tuesday, March 9, at noon. A Zoom link will be sent to registrants. For registration after March 9, email

Mason Meeting-Free Week, March 8–12

Spring break has traditionally provided faculty and staff a departure from the daily and weekly rigors of the semester. As no such hiatus will occur this semester, the Office of the Provost and the Office of the Senior Vice President have collaborated with Mason’s Faculty Senate leadership and come up with a suggestion that will provide the opportunity for some necessary “refreshing” during the semester. 

March 8–12, which had previously been allocated for spring break, has been designated as Mason Meeting-Free Week. Unless there is a critical need to do so, faculty and staff are encouraged not to schedule regular and routine meetings during that time period.

Mason Meeting-Free Week will provide an opportunity for faculty and staff to take time to refresh despite ongoing classes, open residence halls and student support services, and other activities taking place across the university.

Final Call for Outstanding Achievement Awards Nominations

The Outstanding Achievement Awards nomination deadline is fast approaching!

If you would like to recognize a faculty or staff member’s dedication and contributions to Mason, be sure to submit the nomination by March 5.

The ceremony will be held on April 13 from 10–11:30 a.m. Location TBD.

Questions? Contact

General Faculty Meeting Scheduled for March 17

Make plans to virtually join President Gregory Washington, Provost and Executive Vice President Mark Ginsberg, Senior Vice President for Administration and Finance Carol Kissal, and Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and Chief of Staff Ken Walsh from 3–4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 17, for a General Faculty meeting.

This meeting, provided by the Faculty Handbook, is an opportunity to engage with and hear from the president, provost, and key university leaders in a public forum on institution-wide initiatives, as well as participate in discussions on several issues that are important to the general faculty. More information, including the agenda and Zoom link, are forthcoming.

Programs, Events, and Camps (PEC) Serving Minors Summit: Tuesday, March 2

Mason’s annual PEC Summit will occur virtually on Tuesday, March 2, at 10 a.m. Policy stakeholders and service providers will address issues and concerns related to minors on campus. Speakers will be available to take questions about the upcoming PEC summer season.

A limited amount of in-room seating is available. Contact Buz Grover at if you are seeking to attend in-person.

Otherwise, join via Zoom:

Questions? Contact Buz at or 703-993-5784.

March Staff Senate Meeting with Guest Speaker Rose Pascarell

The March Staff Senate Meeting will feature guest speaker Rose Pascarell, vice president of University Life. Rose will share updates on student life and discuss ways that staff can help Mason students achieve their academic and personal goals during the unique challenges of the pandemic.

During the general business meeting (10–11 a.m.), Michelle Griffith will share a brief update about the Patriot Learning Pod.

Wednesday, March 3
10 a.m. to 11 a.m., General Business Meeting
11 a.m. to 12 p.m., Guest Speaker Rose Pascarell
Zoom Meeting:
Passcode: SS123
Call in: 301-715-8592 or 267-831-0333
Webinar ID: 976 1503 4925 / Passcode: 572793

All are welcome to attend the Staff Senate meeting. Contact with questions.

New Award: Patriot Pathbreakers Award Nominations

Do you know a high-performing, collaborative team that embodies the Mason value, We thrive together? 

If so, the Staff Senate and Human Resources and Payroll are accepting nominations until March 5 for the brand-new Patriot Pathbreakers Award. 

Two teams will be chosen and honored at the Outstanding Achievement Awards ceremony on April 13, 10–11:30 a.m. Visit the website for more details and the nomination form.

Questions? Contact

ITS Extending the Duo "Remember Me" Feature to 14 Days 

Information Technology Services (ITS) has increased the number of days devices can be remembered for users verifying their identities with Duo Two-Factor Authentication (2FA).

The number of days users can stay logged into their Duo account on devices without being prompted for a second factor is now 14 days.

To stay logged in to your account, check the "Remember me for 14 days” option when authenticating with your second factor. You should only use this feature on devices you use regularly and trust.

Additional information is available on the ITS website. For questions, contact the ITS Support Center at 703-993-8870 or

Curbside Pickup at the Arlington Campus

Can't come to campus? Let us bring the campus to you! The Arlington Campus is excited to pilot curbside pickup services for students, faculty, and staff. The following items are eligible for curbside pick up:

  • Mason photo IDs
  • Bookstore orders
  • Face coverings
  • Library books

Curbside pickup is available in front of Van Metre Hall on Thursdays from 3:45–5 p.m.

For details and to arrange a pickup, visit

Training and Professional Development

Check Out the Stearns Center Digital Learning YouTube Channel for Online Teaching Tips

Want some quick tips for online teaching? Check out the “how-to” videos available on the Stearns Center Digital Learning YouTube Channel.

The channel features short videos created specifically for Mason by the Digital Learning Team. In less than five minutes per video, learn useful tips about online teaching, instructional technology, course design, and multimedia to apply to Mason online courses.

Subscribe to and visit the YouTube channel regularly. Expanded video offerings will be added in the coming months.

Questions? Contact Stearns Center Digital Learning at

UndocuAlly Training Sessions in March and April

UndocuAlly Training participants will understand the history of our undocumented communities, past and present legislation, as well as the realities and barriers undocumented communities are fighting. Attendance in UndocuAlly Training sessions is recommended every semester, as new legislation and updates are made to the curriculum regularly.

  • Friday, March 19, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.: RSVP
  • Friday, April 9, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.: RSVP

For questions, contact

Apply to Serve as a Distinguished Mentor for the 2021–22 Faculty Mentoring Communities Initiative

Mason’s Faculty Mentoring Communities is accepting applications for Distinguished Mentors to serve in the program for two semesters. Mentors attend approximately five meetings each semester. Additional planning sessions occur regularly to ensure continuity and provide support.

A total of six to nine Distinguished Mentors are needed and should be tenured faculty. A modest stipend for leadership and participation is included. 

Submit an application by Friday, March 12. View details about the application process. Questions may be directed to

Resources for You

Equinox Explorers Club

Equinox Explorers Club offers fantastic spring break opportunities for children, letting imaginations soar!

Campers will "travel" to a different continent each day from March 29 to April 2 and learn about their world through hands-on creative projects, interactive storytelling, arts and crafts, and guest speakers. Explorers will further explore their world through STEM-based activities, gardening, and outdoor exploration.

The program is dedicated to providing a safe environment that allows children the opportunity to make friends and have fun social interactions through organized games and open-ended play. Equinox Explorers Club will provide children with meaningful experiences to realize their intellectual, social, and personal potential. Get ready for a great spring break adventure!

The cost for children (ages K–3) of Mason faculty and staff is only $199 for the week. If enough parents are willing to commit, offerings for older children may be available, too. To register, or for more information, visit

ParkMobile at Mason

If you are coming to campus and looking for a convenient way to park, some areas of the Fairfax and SciTech Campuses are linked to the ParkMobile app. 

Check out the list of locations and codes.For questions, call 703-993-2710 or email

One-Day Summit on Accelerating Active Transportation Change in Northern Virginia

A group of 11 Northern Virginia organizations, including Mason Parking and Transportation, are teaming up for a one-day virtual summit on Thursday, March 25, via Zoom.

The summit will address how to make active transportation more accessible to all, including sessions on the following:

  • Intersection of health and active transportation
  • Promoting equitable outreach
  • The business case for active transportation
  • And much more

Event speakers include local elected officials; advocacy, planning, and consulting professionals; and academic research faculty.

Registration is required. Visit

"This? Or That?" Well-Being Game

Would you choose this? Or that? Join the fun with your colleagues on Human Resources and Payroll's Instagram stories by playing the limited-time well-being game, "This? Or That?"

Each Thursday for eight weeks, check out well-being themed polls that pit your favorite well-being options against each other.

Join the fun and get some well-being ideas. Weekly themes include:

  • Exercise
  • Healthy Eating
  • Mindfulness
  • How You Prefer to Work
  • Social Media
  • Financial Favorites
  • George Mason
  • The DMV Area

Play at @GMUHRandPayroll.

Mason Arts at Home: Upcoming Events

Dewberry Artist Series: Wonderful Woodwinds!
Tuesday, March 2, at 7 p.m.
Virtual Event (Free)
The Reva and Sid Dewberry Family School of Music faculty resume their free recital series with digital pre-recorded performances as part of
 Mason Arts at Home. Recorded from the Center for the Arts Concert Hall, this performance features the woodwind faculty!

Alumni Cocktails and Conversations
Working 9 to 5: Making Your Degree Work with You
Monday, March 8, at 7 p.m.
Virtual Event (Free)
Whether you’re a freelancer losing work, a teacher adapting to virtual instruction, or an arts administrator cancelling or reimagining programming, we face new challenges—but also opportunities to conduct our work in new ways. Hear from alumni artists who were non-traditional students share their experiences pivoting careers by earning
 Mason arts degrees as adult students.

Mason School of Theater: Come My Beloved
Friday, March 12, at 8 p.m.
Mason School of Theater presents Come My Beloved, a play about race, intimacy, and Detroit. The play chronicles a Friday night in the lives of three Black and Jewish couples at different points in time—the 1930s, 1970s, and today. Free, but registration required.

Academy of St Martin in the Fields: re:connect – Overcoming Distance
Saturday, March 13, at 8 p.m.
$15–45, Pay-What-You-Wish in $5 increments
One of the world’s premier chamber orchestras, the Academy of St Martin in the Fields invites you to reconnect with classical music in this intimate, pre-recorded digital concert of stirring masterpieces. The re:connect series was launched in response to the current moment, with socially-distanced concerts filmed at St Martin-in-the-Fields church in London’s Trafalgar Square and streamed online.

Save the Dates for Virtual Bike to Mason: April 19-23

Join a virtual Bike to Mason celebration this year during Earth Week, April 19–23. Virtual events will highlight Mason programs and facilities and provide online training on various aspects of biking.

The schedule will be posted at when available. In the meantime, if you have suggestions about classes you would like to attend, reach out to Parking and Transportation at