George Mason University

News at Mason

Around Mason: Week of September 10, 2019

September 9, 2019

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.

Campus Updates

Mason Momentum: Fall Update on the Budget, Financial Framework and Key University Initiatives

Join Interim President Anne Holton, Provost S. David Wu, and Senior Vice President (SVP) Carol Dillon Kissal for a town hall meeting:

Mason Momentum: Fall Update on the Budget, Financial Framework and Key University Initiatives
Wednesday, September 11
1:30 to 3 p.m.
Merten Hall, Room 1201 (videoconferencing details below)

Interim President Holton will offer opening remarks before SVP Kissal and Provost Wu give a financial overview and share progress on Mason’s strategic initiatives. After the presentation, they will take questions from the audience.

Videoconferencing will be available as follows:
Arlington: Van Metre Hall, Room 720
SciTech: Katherine Johnson Hall, Room 254
Loudoun: Signal Hill, Room 208

Remote participation via Webex: Mason Momentum Town Hall
Phone: 202-860-2110 | Access code: 641 832 413
Please note that your audio will be muted. You may ask questions in the Webex Q&A window.

Contact Jeanmerie Lagos at with any questions.

Nominations for Outstanding Achievement Awards

The Outstanding Achievement Awards celebrate the hard work, dedication, and achievements of Mason’s faculty and staff across 13 award categories. These categories include the Civility Star Award, Adjunct Faculty Service Award, and Margaret C. Howell Award.

To recognize a faculty or staff member’s dedication and contributions to Mason, nominate them for a 2019 Outstanding Achievement Award. These guidelines can help you prepare a nomination.

Nomination deadline is September 26. The ceremony will be held October 31 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. in the Johnson Center, Dewberry Hall.

Questions? Contact Beth Baroody at 703-993-2739 or

Learn More: Medical Education Feasibility Study

Did you hear that Mason is considering the feasibility of a Medical School?

Join Dr. Bill Hazel, senior advisor, Innovation and Community Engagement, Office of Research, Innovation and Economic Impact, and colleagues as they share the results of a feasibility study about physician demand, medical education, and research opportunities.

Town Hall Dates:
Friday, September 13, 10 to 11 a.m. in Krasnow, Room 229
Wednesday, September 25, 3 to 4 p.m. in Robinson Hall, Room B113

The Board of Visitors approved the development of a Phase II study with more comprehensive analysis to inform the next steps. 

Healthy Campus Week: Sept. 23–27

Healthy Campus Week is September 23–27! Support your well-being by attending sessions on leading a healthy life. Check out the list of sessions happening throughout the week.

To register for a session, visit the link above, click on the session you would like to attend, and click “Request” on the MasonLEAPS session page. Sessions will be available via Webex on the Arlington and SciTech Campuses.

For questions, contact To learn more about the Healthier Campus Initiative, visit the Partnership for a Healthier America website.

Walking Wednesday with the Staff Senate

Take a break with a walk around campus! Join members of the Staff Senate for Who’s Walking Wednesday on September 18.

This is a great chance to meet some of your senators, hear about the work they are doing, and share any questions or ideas of your own.

The walk begins at noon in front of Merten Hall. Bring your water and walking shoes!

If you want to lead a walk on the Fairfax Campus, visit the signup page.

If you have questions, contact

Happy Heart Walk: Sept. 25

Time to get pumped! Mason's annual Happy Heart Walk is coming up on Wednesday, September 25, at noon.

This marks the 11th year of the Happy Heart Walk. Join fellow students, faculty, and staff for a walk across all campuses to promote heart health.

Awards are given to the team with the most spirit and to the largest number of participants from a single department. Encourage your colleagues to attend! Did we mention there will be giveaways?

Check out the flyer for more details. Bring your walking shoes and your best heart puns!

Questions? Contact

Celebrate and Support the Arts at ARTS by George!

The College of Visual and Performing Arts presents its annual ARTS by George! on Saturday, September 28, to benefit student scholarships and community arts programs.

The event showcases Mason student artists in 10 open studios and rehearsal halls. Guests will enjoy wine, local craft beer, food stations from top area restaurants, a catered buffet, and a silent auction of 30+ packages.

Following the showcases, guests will experience a dynamite performance by Broadway’s most decorated performer, Audra McDonald, in the Concert Hall followed by an on-stage champagne toast with Ms. McDonald.

Tickets are $300 ($125 Mason alumni) and sponsorships begin at $1,800. Learn more at

Contact Ryan Braaten at or 703-993-8641 with questions.

Delegated Purchasing Authority Increase

Thank you to everyone who provided feedback regarding the delegated purchasing authority increase from $2,000 to $5,000.

The response was overwhelmingly positive and we are encouraged by university-wide efforts to remain good fiscal stewards.

The delegated purchasing authority is now capped at $5,000 for all units. A detailed breakdown of how this change effects unit business practices is available in the Delegated Purchasing Authority guide.

For questions, contact Heather Strange, Fiscal Services, at 703-993-2089 or

Training and Professional Development

Registration Open: Innovations in Teaching & Learning One-Day Conference

Register today for the 11th Innovations in Teaching & Learning conference, on Friday, September 27, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

Theme: Teaching the Whole Student
Keynote speaker: Dr. Lisa Nunn, author of 33 Simple Strategies for Faculty

Join your colleagues for a fun, food-filled day of 30+ inspiring conference sessions (led by Mason instructors) that showcase strategies and tips to support student learning in and out of the classroom. Faculty from all ranks/disciplines, GTAs, and members of support offices are welcome.

Pre-conference workshops will occur on Thursday, September 26, from 1 to 2:15 p.m. and 2:30 to 3:45 p.m. (limited seating).

Register online by September 23. Check out this video for more details. 

Contact or 703-993-6200 with questions.

Flexible Work at Mason Seminar

As a follow up to the Anthem EAP seminar “Successful Teleworking,” Human Resources and Payroll is offering a seminar on flexible work options:

Flexible Work at Mason
Thursday, September 19
Noon to 1 p.m.
Merten Hall, Room 1202

This seminar will discuss:

  • Different flexible work options at Mason
  • What flexible work option(s) may work for you
  • How to discuss flexible work options with your supervisor
  • How to document and communicate your arrangement
  • Flexible work resources

All employees are welcome. To register, visit the Flexible Work at Mason details page on MasonLEAPS and click “request.”

If you have questions, contact or 703-993-2600.

Supervisor Boot Camp Registration

Supervisor Boot Camp provides essential information, resources, and contacts to supervisors who are new to Mason or new to supervising. This boot camp includes four half-day sessions over the course of eight weeks from October 2 through November 13. 

Participants must supervise at least one employee who is either administrative/professional faculty or classified staff.

Check out the Supervisor Boot Camp page for more details!

For questions or to register, contact Margaret Vu at Space is limited and registrations are first come, first served.

Bicycle Commuting 101

Bicycling to campus can be fun and great for your well-being. Research indicates that those who bike to work are the happiest with their commute.

Join Rick Holt from Human Resources and Payroll and League of American Bicyclists certified instructor for an upcoming workshop:

Bicycle Commuting 101
Thursday, October 10
Noon to 1 p.m.
The Hub, Room 3

During this session, Rick will share information to help you feel more confident about getting to campus on two wheels. The workshop will cover basic bicycling information, and Mason Transportation will share biking resources.

Sponsored by Mason Transportation and Human Resources and Payroll, the training is open to faculty, staff, and students. Register by logging into Mason LEAPS.

Learn Well-Being Leadership Skills for Success

Learn well-being leadership skills for professional and personal success in these upcoming certificate programs from Mason’s Center for the Advancement of Well-Being:

Positive Leadership
Meeting dates: November 18–19
Register by November 4 (by October 4 for early bird rate)

Leveraging the Power of Polarity Thinking
Meeting dates: October 28–30

Leadership Coaching for Organizational Well-Being
Apply by December 15 for cohort 8 (Meeting dates: February to June 2020)

Questions? Contact or 703-993-6090.

School of Business Graduate Programs Showcase

Learn more about the highly-ranked School of Business graduate programs. Students, alumni, faculty, and staff from each program will be available, along with representatives from Financial Aid, Career Services, and Military Services.

School of Business Graduate Programs Showcase
Tuesday, September 17, 5:30 p.m. (Registration opens at 5 p.m.)
Van Metre Hall (formerly Founders Hall), Arlington Campus

All showcase attendees will receive an application fee waiver!

Register at Contact or 703-993-8006 with questions.

Resources for You

Flexible Spending Accounts Reminder

If you were enrolled in flexible spending accounts (FSA) during the 2018–19 plan year, you have until September 30 to send Anthem your reimbursement claims and necessary documentation. These claims are for eligible expenses incurred between July 1, 2018 and June 30, 2019.

Reimbursement forms are available on the Human Resources/Payroll forms page. Be sure to use the forms for Anthem. For assistance with form and claims processing, call Anthem FSA at 877-451-7244.

For more information, see the homepage announcement section at For questions, contact or 703-993-2600.

Nine-Month Faculty Paychecks and Open Enrollment

Nine-month faculty who made changes during the Open Enrollment period in May might see adjustments to their paychecks on September 16, 2019.

The adjustments reflect the following:

  • To ensure there was no interruption to nine-month faculty health benefits from June to August 2019, the Benefits team double-deducted health insurance premiums from March to May 2019
  • This process did not account for any Open Enrollment changes that may have taken effect when the new plan year began on July 1, 2019
  • The Benefits team is now making adjustments to reflect the coverage during July and August 2019

For questions, contact or 703-993-2600.

Virginia529 Presentation

Wednesday, September 18
Noon to 1 p.m.
​Merten Hall, Room 1204

Learn about saving for higher education expenses for yourself or a loved one at the Virginia529 Presentation. During this session,  learn how to:

  • Save for tuition and other college expenses
  • Save for private or religious K-12 education
  • Take advantage of tax-free earnings and the Virginia state tax deduction
  • Meet your savings goals

Register here. (Click “Request.")

If you are unable to attend, there will be a Webinar on October 9 for the Virginia529, Maryland529, and DC529 plans. Look out for more details! 

DMV2Go on the Fairfax Campus

Take care of your Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles business at a convenient Mason location. DMV2Go will be on the Fairfax Campus on Tuesday, September 10, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Merten Hall parking lot.

For available services, visit the DMV2Go website. Check out the 2019 DMV2Go schedule for other campus visits.

Back To School Tech Deal (Free Headphones!)

Need a new personal laptop or tablet? Patriot Tech in the Johnson Center has a deal for you!

Purchase an iPad Air, iPad Pro, Mac Desktop computer, or MacBook Pro and receive a free pair of Beats Solo 3 Wireless Headphones.

This offer is in-store only and expires on September 26.

Contact Patriot Tech at 703-993-4100 with questions.

Fall Biking Opportunities at Mason

Parking and Transportation has teamed up with the Office of Sustainability and the Fairfax Alliance on Better Bicycling (FABB) for some biking-related opportunities this fall.


  • Abandoned “As Is” Bike Sale, September 20, 2 to 5 p.m. in the visitor section (first level) of the Shenandoah Parking Garage. Approximately 60 bikes need some TLC. See if one is for you.
  • Learn to Ride Classes with the Fairfax Alliance on Better Bicycling (FABB): September 14 or 28, 10 a.m. to noon, $10


  • Bike Skills Building Class with FABB: October 12, 10 a.m. to noon, $10
  • Social Ride with FABB from Mason to Burke Lake Park and back. October 26, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., $10

For more information on all of these opportunities, visit

Institutional Review Board (IRB) Walk-In Office Hours

The Institutional Review Board (IRB) office staff hosts walk-in office hours every Tuesday afternoon from 2 to 4 p.m. Faculty/students/staff are welcome to bring questions about their IRB application or discuss the details of their research project.

Office hours are held on the Fairfax Campus in Research Hall, Suite 141. To schedule an appointment outside of those office hours, contact

It's a “Pool Party"—Carpool and Vanpool, That Is!

Are you looking to drive less, save more, and help the environment?

Come to a car/vanpool “Pool Party” from noon to 1 p.m. on Thursday, September 19, in the Hub's Corner Pocket.

Learn about your options, meet people who may be commuting on a similar route, and enjoy some free food!

For details and to register, visit the website.

Contact 703-993-2828 or with questions.

Get Inspired in Community Art and Music Classes (Employee Discount)

Whether you are interested in learning a new instrument or wishing to advance your skills, Mason Community Arts Academy offers dozens of interactive and fun classes for all ages.

Topics include guitar, piano, violin, cello, voice, drawing, painting, and more.

Mason employees and their immediate family members are eligible for a 10% discount.

View the fall schedule at To receive the discount on any classes, contact 703-993-9889.

Study Abroad Fair

Join the Global Education Office (GEO) at the George Mason Study Abroad Fair on Thursday, September 19, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the SUB I quad.

The fair will include several raffles and prize giveaways. Visitors who complete a check-in card will be able to receive a free Mason study abroad t-shirt (supplies permitting).

Learn more at

Contact or 703-993-2154 with questions.