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Mason Honors Commitment to the UN Global Compact

November 22, 2013

Professor Linda Schwartzstein leads a discussion on labor practices at the United Nations Global Compact Symposium at the Fairfax campus. Photo by Alexis Glenn/Creative Services/George Mason University

Professor Linda Schwartzstein, center, leads a discussion on labor practices at the United Nations Global Compact Symposium at the Fairfax Campus. Photo by Alexis Glenn

On Nov. 19, George Mason University held what promises to be an annual event, Honoring Our Commitment. The daylong symposium was held to celebrate, reflect, identify and affirm George Mason’s commitment to the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC).

The UNGC is a strategic policy initiative for businesses and other organizations committed to aligning their operations and strategies with 10 widely accepted principles in the areas of human rights, labor, environment and anticorruption.

Mason was one of the first American universities to join the UNGC, shortly after Ángel Cabrera became Mason’s president in 2012.

three panelists

From left, assistant professor Al Fuertes, global affairs graduate student Molly Madra, and Schwartzstein lead a discussion on labor practices at the symposium. Photo by Alexis Glenn

This month’s event brought the Mason community together to

  • Celebrate the international reach of our curriculum, scholarship and student body
  • Reflect on how well we are honoring our UNGC commitment, both academically and operationally
  • Identify opportunities for deepening our UNGC commitment in the coming year
  • Affirm our intention to pursue these opportunities as we become “a university for the world”

UNGC campus leaders Cabrera and Provost Peter Stearns opened the meeting, along with campus directors Andrew Wingfield, sustainability studies fellow in the Provost’s Office, and Janette Muir, associate provost for undergraduate education.

Among the activities were undergraduate research posters on relevant topics that were featured during lunch; a presentation of the I Am Mason Project by Steven Weinberger, director of linguistics, and Karyn Mallett, assistant director of the English Language Institute; as well as reflection and dialogue on the UNGC commitments on human rights, labor, environment and anticorruption.

The event was organized by the Office of the Provost and Office of Sustainability; Office of International Programs and Services; Office of Student Scholarship, Creative Activities and Research; New Century College; Linguistics ;and the English Language Institute.