Around Mason: Week of Feb. 21, 2023


Faculty/Staff Announcements 

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Campus Updates

Guidance on Upcoming Performance Evaluations

As a reminder, the new employee performance evaluation cycle is fast approaching. The A/P faculty self-evaluation launched Feb. 20, and the classified staff self-evaluation will launch on March 1.   

To help you prepare, Human Resources will host four virtual sessions of Performance Management Updates for 2023 to provide an overview of the procedure, new forms and revised rating scale: Outstanding, Successful, Developing, and Unsatisfactory.   

Reminder: Regularly check the Performance Management website for guidance, due dates, resources, training opportunities and frequently asked questions.

Cops on Campus: A Conversation with Police Chiefs 

As a follow-up to the community forum and listening session held in fall 2022, the George Mason University Police Advisory Board (PAB), with the support of the Anti-Racism and Inclusive Excellence Initiative (ARIE), is excited to host Cops on Campus, a conversation with police chiefs from around the country.  

Cops on Campus 
Monday, March 6, from 4–6 p.m. 
Fairfax Campus, Johnson Center Cinema 
RSVP required 

Participants will discuss the value of community and police relationships on university campuses in the context of local events and the national climate. We will hear from campus chiefs with unique experiences at different types of institutions in a moderated discussion, followed by a Q&A session.  

RaShall M. Brackney, distinguished visiting professor of practice in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences and Police Advisory Board co-chair, will moderate the conversation.  

Panelists include: 

  • Deputy Chief Tommye Sutton, Vanderbilt University 
  • Chief Kimberly Spears-McNatt, The Ohio State University 
  • Chief Eric Holmes, Duquesne University 
  • Former Chief David L . Perry, senior research associate, Institute for Intergovernmental Relations 
  • Representatives from the George Mason Department of Police and Public Safety 

Outstanding Achievement Awards: Nomination Deadline Approaching 

The deadline to nominate your colleagues for Outstanding Achievement Awards is fast approaching on Feb. 25. There are 16 award categories, including excellence in customer service, diversity and inclusion, and teamwork, as well as special awards for outstanding members of the adjunct faculty, Housing and Residence Life, Mason alumni, and more.   

Visit the Outstanding Achievement Awards website for more information. 

Hosting a Camp or Youth Program at Mason 

Spring semester is when many departments plan their summer camps and other programs serving minors. If you are planning a program or camp involving minors, you must follow University Policy 1138, which governs such events. Review additional information about programs involving minors on campus.   

All internal programs, events, or camps (PEC) involving minors must complete the registration form. Completing the registration initiates the PEC process and alerts policy stakeholders of an incoming minors events. 

PECs where Mason staff will be in care, control, or custody of minors will need to work with Human Resources to complete background checks for those staff members. Risk Management reviews operation plans and provides various resources such as medical, photo release, and pick-up/drop-off forms, while those PECs collecting funds for their programs can set up an e-commerce store with Fiscal Services via Mason Marketplace. The PEC registration process also alerts University Events, Mason Dining, Residence Life, and other service providers that may be needed. 

For questions about the PEC process, contact Buz Grover, Operations and Business Services, 703-993-5784.

Mason Night with the Washington Capitals  

Celebrate Mason Night with the Washington Capitals when the Caps take on the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday, March 23, at 7 p.m. in Capital One Arena.  

The Capitals are offering several ticket options to Mason alumni and friends. Prices include discounted seats and a Mason and Capitals co-branded beanie hat.  

A pregame reception will be held at Bar Deco from 6–7:30 p.m., across from the Capital One Arena. Join your fellow Patriots for a cash bar and complimentary food, while supplies last. Registration required.  

When registering for the pregame reception, consider making an additional gift to support the John C. and Louise P. Wood Endowed Scholarship Fund, which helps fund scholarships for undergraduate and graduate students. Some of the proceeds from your pregame ticket also support this scholarship.  

For more information or questions, contact or 703-993-8696.

Patriot Perks Basketball Watch Parties

Support the Mason Men’s Basketball team at the Patriot Perks Basketball Watch Parties this spring. Cheer on the Patriots from these Patriot Perks locations during the team’s away games:   

  • Feb. 25: Patriots Pub & Grill, 5:30 p.m. (Mason at Dayton)   
  • March 4: Velocity Wings Fairfax, noon (Mason at Richmond)   

Bring a Mason ID or Alumni Association Member Card to receive exclusive discounts at each location. Plus, there will be free Mason spirit items and giveaways provided by the Patriot Perks program. Grab your friends, colleagues, or family to come celebrate and cheer on the Patriots! RSVP today.

Nominations for the Jack Wood Award for Town-Gown Relations 

The Jack Wood Award highlights the outstanding contributions of faculty, staff, students, businesses/not-for-profits, community members, and elected officials/staff who demonstrate leadership fostering mutually beneficial relationships between the university and the community.   

This award honors former Mayor Jack Wood, who played an instrumental role in establishing Mason in Fairfax and establishing positive town-gown relations.   

Awardees will be notified by April 10. The Board of Visitors will honor awardees on May 4.   

Nominations are due March 24. Self-nominations are welcome. Community relations/outreach professionals are not eligible. Questions? Contact Traci Kendall, Government and Community Relations. 

GAMEmason 2023: Two-Day Gaming Convention  

Calling all gamers and gaming enthusiasts! Mason’s Student Involvement and the Center for the Arts, in collaboration with Mason’s Computer Game Design program, and GMU Esports, team up once again for GAMEmason 2023 (Gaming, Appearances, Meet-and-Greets and Experiences), an engaging two-day gaming convention on Friday and Saturday, March 3–4, on the Fairfax Campus. 

GAMEmason 2023 will feature guest speakers from the industry, educational sessions, free arcade play, tabletop and console gaming, Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality demonstrations, an artist alley featuring work by Mason students, vendors and businesses from across the game industry, and more. 

Tickets are free for Mason students, faculty, and staff. Tickets are available for purchase by the general public. Visit the website for tickets and schedule information. 

Grad Fair 

The George Mason University Bookstore will host a Grad Fair from Feb. 28 to March 2, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in the Johnson Center, Dewberry Hall. Encourage your graduating students to stop by for all things grad-related! Contact the bookstore with questions at 703-993-2666.  

Mason Shuttle Schedule Changes for Spring Break 

Spring Break will bring significant modifications to the Mason Shuttle schedules. Details are available at A Spring Break schedule summary is also available. Contact 703-993-2828 or for assistance. 

Training and Professional Development

Additional Sessions for Mason 101 Available 

New to the Mason community? Looking to update your Mason knowledge? You are invited to sign up for Mason 101!   

Mason 101 is a one-time, two-hour session that shares the history, organizational structure, and resources of George Mason University, including a virtual tour of all Mason sites and updates on the future of Mason. Upcoming training dates:   

  • Friday, Feb. 24, from 10 a.m. to noon, Merten Hall, Room 2001 (in-person)   
  • Friday, March 10, from 10 a.m. to noon (hosted on Zoom)   
  • Friday, April 14, from 10 a.m. to noon, Merten Hall, Room 2001 (in-person)   
  • Friday, May 12, from 10 a.m. to noon (hosted on Zoom)   

Visit the website for registration information. With questions, contact Philip Stamper at 703-993-5308. 

Toastmasters Open House 

George Mason Toastmasters invites you to an open house on Wednesday, Feb. 22, at noon in Merten Hall, Room 3300, or via Zoom. Toastmasters provides an opportunity to practice your speaking and leadership skills.  

George Mason Toastmasters is now hosting hybrid meetings for both in-person and online participants, offering an equally positive experience to both audiences.  

The open house is a great opportunity to learn more about Toastmasters and see a meeting in action. Participants will have a chance to participate in Table Topics, impromptu speaking practice, and ask questions about the club.   

To know more about our club, see the scheduled meetings, and get the zoom link for virtual attendance, visit  

Faculty Matters Workshop Series  

The year-long Faculty Matters Workshop Series, a collaboration between Faculty Affairs and Research Development Service, is designed to address key issues central to faculty development and success.   

The next workshop, Writing Workshop for Teaching and Mentoring Statements, focuses on how to convey the impact and effectiveness of your teaching and mentoring for renewal, tenure, and/or promotion. Join the workshop on Thursday, Feb. 23, from 1:30–3 p.m. on Zoom.

Resources for You

Working Moms Group: 20th Anniversary Event  

The Support Group for Working Mothers at Mason is one way faculty, staff, and students can come together, discuss the issues confronting working parents, and perhaps spur changes on campus.   

The group is celebrating its 20th year of meetings with a special event on Tuesday, Feb. 21, at noon in Merten Hall, Room 1202. Jaime Lester, associate dean in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, will be the guest speaker. Refreshments will be served. RSVP.  

For the full meeting schedule, visit the website or join the Microsoft Teams group for more information.     

Contact Heather Aleknavage with questions.  

Aging Parents Employee Support Group  

Join other Mason employees navigating the challenges related to having aging parents. This group is for employees with aging parents who are looking to connect with others, share advice, and be part of a supportive community. The group will meet monthly over Zoom on Thursdays from noon to 1 p.m. If you are interested in joining or have questions, contact Laura Winkler

Check out a list of other Employee Resource Groups at Mason

Create an Account:  

What is It’s the go-to site for planning your commute to Mason. Going home for the weekend? See if others want to join you. Looking for someone with whom to share a ride? See who lives in your general area and might be coming to campus at similar times. Want to track your commutes and see how much CO2 you’re reducing? Check it out!   

The more people who create an account, the more robust the site will quickly become. Create an account today. Contact with questions. 

Prescription Drug Drop Box Available at Mason Police Headquarters

Do you have unused prescription medications that you no longer use or need? Visit the Mason Police Department lobby to drop off medications in the CVS Drug Drop Box available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  

The Mason Police and Safety Headquarters is located on the Fairfax Campus, in front of Rappahannock Parking Deck. Needles or sharps of any kind are not accepted. 

For questions, contact Lt. Michael Guston at

Visiting Filmmakers Series: Lamb with Filmmaker Yared Zeleke  

Tuesday, Feb. 28, at 4:30 p.m. 
Fairfax Campus, Johnson Center Cinema 

This remarkable feature debut tells the story of young Ephraim, a half-Jewish, Ethiopian boy who is sent by his father to live among distant relatives after his mother’s death. Ephraim uses his cooking skills to carve out a place among his cousins, but when his uncle decides that his beloved sheep must be sacrificed for the next religious feast, he will do anything to save the animal and return home. 

Mindful Mason Moments 

Mindful Mason Moments sessions for the spring semester will take place online via Zoom. Take a well-being break while facilitators hold space for you to slow down and reconnect with yourself, so you can move through your day with more awareness, connection, and ease.    

Sessions will take place from February through April, on the following dates and times:   

  • Mondays and Tuesdays from 4–4:20 p.m. (No session on April 25)    
  • Wednesdays and Fridays from noon to 12:20 p.m. (No session on April 12)    

Note: There will be no sessions during Mason’s spring break (March 13–17). For more information about Mindful Mason Moments, contact Katie Clare

Alternative Career Paths: Mason Enterprise Center Workshop 

While the art director of the Washington Post, Smithsonian, and Preservation magazines, Brian Noyes baked pies and breads on weekends in his Virginia piedmont farmhouse and sold them out of an old red truck he bought from designer Tommy Hilfiger.   

The bakery now has two locations, ships thousands of baked goods nationwide, and has earned accolades from Oprah Winfrey, Barack Obama, and many national publications. Noyes has also written two cookbooks.  

Noyes will speak about his experiences at an in-person workshop on Wednesday, March 1, at 9:30 a.m. at the Mason Enterprise Center of Fauquier in Warrenton. A book signing will follow (books need to be purchased ahead of time for signing). Registration required. Contact Danyelle St.Germain to RSVP. 

Kritikos Anti-Racist Reading Group   

The College of Visual and Performing Arts welcomes the Mason community to the Kritikos Anti-Racist Reading Group, which meets on Fridays from 1–2:30 p.m.    

The group holds a commitment to relationship-building, awareness, reimagining, transformation, and action around anti-racist practices, racial justice, the creation of conversations, as well as systems of compassion and healing. The group continues to focus on anti-Black racism and its effects on society.   

Join the meeting on Friday, Feb. 24, for the following topic: “What Can We Learn from New School Activism and Organizing?" Spring semester meetings will occur through March 31 (no meeting March 17). This event is free and open to the public.  

Upcoming Performances at Mason 

Visual Voices Lecture with Jaewook Lee   
School of Art   
Thursday, Feb. 23, at 4:45 p.m.   
Hosted via Zoom; registration required   

Visual Voices is an online artist presentation and Q&A that provides exposure to a variety of practicing artists. Jaewook Lee is an artist, writer, amateur scientist, semi-philosopher, and sometime curator. Lee is the founder and director of Mindful Joint, an annual symposium that focuses on non-hierarchical knowledge sharing in contemporary art.  

Mason Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band Concert 
Dewberry School of Music  
Tuesday, Feb. 28, at 8 p.m.  
Center for the Arts  

Come see the Wind Symphony and the Symphonic Band, directed by William L. Lake Jr., perform a variety of band repertoire. 

Victor Provost: Steelpan Rhythms & Melodies  
Matinee Idylls 
Wednesday, March 1, at 1:30 p.m.  
Hylton Performing Arts Center, Gregory Family Theater 

Steelpannist Victor Provost presents an eclectic repertoire of music including folk music of South America and the Caribbean, European classical music, American Jazz, and original compositions. Provost is known for his impressive improvisational voice and style. With a strong foundation in Bebop, a contemporary sensibility, and deep roots in Caribbean music, he seamlessly melds and mixes genres.  

Mason School of Theater: The Night Knights 
Friday, March 3, at 8 p.m. (ASL-interpreted and talkback) 
Saturday, March 4, at 11 a.m. (sensory-friendly) and 2 p.m. (audio-described) 
de Laski Performing Arts Building, TheatreSpace 

Follow the Night Knights on their quest to put the kingdom to bed. What story will the princess want to hear tonight? Will the dragon need a glass of water? This order of knights is prepared for any bedtime demand. But will they ever get to go to sleep? Designed for younger audiences, this whimsical, family-friendly play brings the battle for bedtime to silly, exuberant life. Created by Mimsi Janis and devised by The Mason Players from favorite fairy tales and bedtime stories, don’t miss this world-premiere. 

Dewberry School of Music: University Singers Concert 
Sunday, March 5, at 4 p.m. 
Harris Theatre 

Under the direction of Lisa Billingham, the University Singers is a select choral ensemble at Mason dedicated to the performance of advanced vocal chamber music ranging from Renaissance to contemporary and commissioned works.  

Jazz at Lincoln Center Presents: Songs We Love  
Sunday, March 5, at 4 p.m.  
Hylton Performing Arts Center 

Under the direction of Wynton Marsalis, Jazz at Lincoln Center has brought the art form of Jazz from the heart of New York City to over 446 cities in more than 40 countries. The virtuosic rising stars of Jazz at Lincoln Center will inspire confidence in the future of the uniquely American art form while riffing on its storied past. This performance is appropriate for all ages. 

Dewberry School of Music: Symphony Orchestra Concert 
Monday, March 6, at 8 p.m. 
Center for the Arts 

The Mason Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Soo Han, is comprised of outstanding string, wind, and percussion players from throughout the Dewberry School of Music. This concert features winners of the student concerto competition.