Around Mason: Week of July 6, 2021


Faculty/Staff Announcements

Have something to share? Review announcement guidelines and submit an announcement from your unit through the online form.

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

Campus Updates

Vaccination Documentation Incentive Initiative

To show appreciation to Patriots who have completed the COVID-19 vaccine documentation uploading process, Mason will raffle off giveaways between June 14 and August 6. Giveaways include parking permits, professional development funding, bookstore and Patriot Tech gift cards, tickets to athletic events and performances at Center for the Arts and the Hylton Performing Arts Center, MasonMoney, and more!

Prizes will be awarded each week through the August 1 deadline.  Winners will be notified through email.

Visit for more information.

2021–22 Mason Reads Book Announcement

New Student and Family Programs is excited to announce the Mason Reads book for 2021–22, The Undocumented Americans by Karla Cornejo Villavicencio.

So often we only hear stories of DREAMers or DACA recipients who have done extraordinary things. In this book, Villavicencio writes about migrants in a way they’ve never been written about before—in all their complexity, messiness, humanity, and beauty.

Fall 2021 students will receive the book in the mail in early August, prior to the start of the semester. Programs around the book’s theme occur throughout the year, including film screenings, panel discussions, lunch and learns, and small group discussions.

Mason Reads seeks to increase partnerships and opportunities to engage around the book themes. If your unit or department is interested, contact Sam Greenberg at or visit

Training and Professional Development

Stearns Center’s Online Teaching Newsletter: Equitable and Inclusive Online Teaching

Get a jump start on your fall online teaching by subscribing to the Stearns Center's Special Summer Series of the Online Teaching Coaching Newsletter. This summer, the newsletter will focus on tips, best practices, and strategies for equitable and inclusive online teaching.

Twice a month, subscribers will receive a newsletter issue with best practices, quick tips, and curated resources about facilitating equitable and inclusive learning environments for all online learners. A planning worksheet will be included with each issue to help you plan and apply the practices to your online teaching.

Subscribe today. Review past newsletter issues on the Stearns Center website.

Questions? Contact

Sign up for Mason 101

Mason 101 is a one-time, two-hour workshop for Mason staff and faculty to learn more about the history, organization, resources, and future of George Mason University.

The next opportunity is scheduled for Friday, July 10 from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. and will take place over Zoom.

Sign up is available at

  • Log-in with your MasonID.
  • In the search bar, type "Mason 101" and press your Return/Enter key.
  • On the screen that opens, click "Mason 101"
  • Click on the available Mason 101 date.
  • Click the "Request" button next to the date you wish to register for.

For questions or more information, contact Philip Stamper at or 703-993-5308.

Resources for You

Preparing for Back to School Webinar with Bright Horizons

As you prepare for the 2022 school year after months of worries and unstructured learning, this Bright Horizons workshop will help you learn how to make the most of learning with your child at home, optimize learning with play and unstructured time, and how to encourage social development.

Webinar: Preparing for Back to School
Tuesday, July 20, at noon

For questions, contact

Mason Shuttles During August

For those faculty/staff planning a return to campus in August, a reminder that Mason Shuttles is operating on a summer schedule for most of August.

There are two routes operating this summer - Fairfax to SciTech (on a COVID-19/Summer reduced operating schedule) and the On-Demand Shuttle which serves stops in and around the Fairfax Campus. The CUE bus is operating on its regular schedule with service to Vienna Metro.

For details on the Mason Shuttles summer schedule, visit

Schedules for fall will be posted in early August. Although service will be more robust than last year, it will not be at pre-pandemic levels. Fall service is scheduled to begin on Friday, August 20 or Monday, August 23 depending upon the route.

With questions, contact Parking Services at 703-993-2828 or

Parking Permits and Payroll Deduction

Are you a full-time faculty/staff member who is planning to return to campus and wants to reinstate your payroll deduction permit? If so, please complete a Payroll Deduction form if you work on the Fairfax or SciTech Campuses or Arlington Campus.

With questions, contact Parking Services at 703-993-2710 (Fairfax), 703-993-8007 (Arlington), or 703-582-4698 (SciTech).

Commuter Choice Reminder/SmarTrip Cards and WMATA Improvements

Full-time faculty and staff who plan to return to campus in August using public transportation have access to the Commuter Choice program. Commuter Choice covers qualified transportation expenses (not parking) up to the IRS limit of $270/month based upon actual commuting costs.

Note that Metro (WMATA) is installing new fare gates at their Metro stops over the next year. The new faregates will not accept older SmarTrip cards (purchased before 2012).

For details, visit

The deadline to receive August funds is Thursday, July 8.

Contact Parking and Transportation at 703-993-2828 or for assistance.

Summer Mindful Mason Moment Sessions

Mason students, faculty, and staff, take a mindful break in your day and contribute to your well-being through Mindful Mason Moments!

These free, drop-in 30-minute mindfulness sessions are held online at noon every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday during June and July.

Practices may include meditation, gentle movement, sound, silence, or breath work. Mindful Mason Moments sessions feature Mason facilitators. Learn more here.

Carpool/Vanpool Q&A Session

Are you looking for some insight on how you will commute to and from campus during the fall semester?

Ridesharing is a great option for those looking to potentially save at least $1000 a year, shave time from their commute, help reduce traffic for their community, and shrink their carbon footprint. For some background information, visit Is Ridesharing a Commuting Option for You?

If you have questions about ridesharing, join Katie Thompson, Transit Consultant with Commute 66 and Josh Cantor and Janet Walker of Mason Parking and Transportation at a casual, drop in session on Tuesday, July 27 from 10-11:30 a.m. Ask questions on commuting and learn about resources available in the region. No need to register, just join them via Zoom on July 27.