September 2020

October Staff Senate Meeting with President Washington

Dr. Gregory Washington, president, George Mason University. Photo by Creative Services

The October Staff Senate meeting will feature guest speaker Dr. Gregory Washington, president, George Mason University.

Wednesday, Oct. 7
11 a.m. to noon
General meeting will precede from 10. a.m. to 11. a.m.
Zoom Meeting:
Passcode: SS123
Call in: 301-715-8592 or 267-831-0333
Webinar ID: 976 1503 4925 / Passcode: 572793

The Staff Senate represents all classified and non-student wage employees at George Mason University. Working closely with university administration, we address concerns that have an impact on the quality of work-life for the Mason community. The work of the Senate is accomplished through open and continuous communication with its constituents.

Thank you for submitting your questions and comments to Dr. Washington in advance of our session.


September 2020

August in Review

In addition, each month, the Mason Staff Senate:

  • Presents the Employee of the Month with a gift
  • Attends Human Resources and Payroll’s New Staff Orientations to welcome new employees and introduce them to the work of the Staff Senate
  • Recognizes the service of Mason retirees with a letter of appreciation
  • The Communications Committee meets monthly to coordinate and publish a monthly newsletter distributed to classified staff and non-student wage employees
Profile of a Senator September 2020

Meet Staff Senator Kimberly Shaw-Mack, Office Manager, Human Resources & Payroll

Kimberly Shaw-Mack/ Photo by Evan Cantwell/Creative Services

Roles: My role in Human Resources and Payroll and the Staff Senate Events Committee have allowed me the pleasure of participating in several events here at Mason, such as the 2020 Winter Warm-Up Staff Appreciation Event, 2019 Holiday Toy and Pantry Drive and 2019 Take Our Daughters & Sons to Work Day as well as flu shot clinics and several Employee of the Month celebrations.

Mason journey: I’ve been at Mason since September 2018 and it’s been quite a ride. During these last two years, I have witnessed several transformations in various departments with the change of leadership and policies.

Diverse and inclusive culture: I continue to look forward to positive changes to come with the arrival of President Washington. I am particularly excited to see how the diverse and inclusive culture of Mason will be enhanced. The current programs for the Mason LGBTQIA community are great, but I would like to see more opportunities for Patriots to be educated and become allies. I am also looking forward to the projects and initiatives that will be rolled out by the new Task Force on Anti-Racism and Inclusive Excellence. As a person of color, I am affected by the current state of our nation in more ways than one. Now more than ever it is paramount that all minorities feel seen and supported by their employers. I have high hopes that Mason will be a great example of this moving forward.

COVID-19 transition: During this pandemic, I have been extremely proud of my Human Resources and Payroll colleagues. They did not miss a beat! Despite the uncertainty and anxiety brought on by COVID-19, we came together to support the university and each other. For a department that operated 99% physically in the office on desktops to suddenly go 100% remote on laptops without any disruptions, that’s pretty remarkable. I am beyond impressed with the adaptability I witnessed from my team.

Best thing about working at Mason: The best thing is the Well-Being University Initiative. It’s the push for Mason to be a place where everyone can thrive, regardless of your background. The first time I participated in meditation was during a “Mindful Tuesday” session and it changed my life. I now use meditation regularly to take a breather from the craziness of life – it’s like a magic reset button. I have learned several other tips and techniques for mindfulness that have helped me with my work/life balance as well. I have also had the pleasure of attending several seminars on well-being – “Re-learn to Relax,” “Faculty Staff Enrichment Day” and “Overcoming Burnout,” just to name a few. And I received Mental Health First Aid Training and certification. All of this was provided to faculty and staff free of charge showing that well-being is important to the university.

Why serve on Staff Senate: I hope I can support my colleagues and ultimately help Mason become an even better place to work.

September 2020

Support Group for Working Mothers

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

The 19th year of group meetings will look a bit different, as we plan to meet virtually for the fall semester. The first one will be on Tuesday, Sept. 15, at 2 p.m. We also adjusted the time, as the lunch hour is not ideal for working moms with young children at home.

If you are interested in sharing stories and being part of an informal organization of working mothers, join us here:

Join Zoom Meeting:
Meeting ID: 910 8174 0443
Passcode: 058387

Feel free to visit our website for more information or contact Heather Aleknavage at

September 2020

Updates from Parking and Transportation

Parking Services Building at Fairfax Campus. Photo by Creative Services/George Mason University

Change Your Commute: Vanpool  

Looking for a new way to get to work? Consider vanpooling. Travel with the same group of Mason colleagues. Reduce the time you spend driving. Plus, for full-time faculty/staff, the cost of your commute can be subsidized by Mason up to $270/month. 

Seats currently available from the Fredericksburg area (work hours 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.). Or, start your own vanpool with four coworkers. For details, visit or contact Parking and Transportation at 


Try Going Car-Free  

It’s always a great idea to have more than one way to get to Mason. Car-Free Day, on Sept. 22, is an opportunity to try a new way to commute.

Take the Car-Free pledge at and receive promo codes for discounts and be entered into a raffle for some great prizes. If you are a full-time employee, remember that public transportation costs and vanpool are subsidized up to the IRS limit of $270/month. 

Details on the Commuter Choice Program are available at


Parking and Transportation: Fall 2020  

COVID-19 has necessitated a number of changes within Parking and Transportation. We have some resources to assist you as you return to campus, including: 

Reach out if you have any questions by calling 703-993-2828 or emailing


Mobile Commuter Store: Arlington Campus  

Drop by the Mobile Commuter Store in front of the Arlington Campus each Tuesday from 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. (3301 Fairfax Drive).  The Mobile Commuter Store brings commuter information and fare cards right to you. For more information, visit the website

View the full schedule for the Mobile Commuter Store.

September 2020

Outdoor Performances with Hylton on the Hill

Hylton Performing Arts Center

The Hylton Performing Arts Center is thrilled to welcome you to Hylton on the Hill, a new outdoor performance space with seating on a natural rise just behind the theater. Enjoy these performances in your own seating area, physically distanced from other audience members.

Charm City Junction
Sunday, Oct. 4, at 4 p.m.
Hylton on the Hill, SciTech Campus

From dance-inducing Old Time rhythms and foot stomping Irish melodies to hard-driving bluegrass, Baltimore-based acoustic roots quartet Charm City Junction creates a fresh soundscape that keeps listeners on the edge of their seats wondering where they’ll go next.  Buy Tickets 

Ranky Tanky
Sunday, Oct. 11, at 4 p.m.
Hylton on the Hill, SciTech Campus

Charleston-based quintet Ranky Tanky is about to bring an outdoor concert to the Hylton Center that is part folk, part funk, and totally fearless. Buy Tickets

The Queen’s Cartoonists
Sunday, Oct. 18, at 6 p.m.
Hylton on the Hill, SciTech Campus

With virtuosic musicianship, multi-instrumental mayhem, and large doses of comedy, The Queen’s Cartoonists will change the way your family sees (and hears) the Sunday funnies. Buy Tickets 


To purchase tickets over the phone, contact the Hylton Ticket Office, operating Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, visit our website about our procedures and safety measures:

September 2020

Hours of Operation Website

Check out the new Hours of Operation website, which lists in-person, virtual, and phone contact hours for Mason offices and services. Visit 

Don’t see your department listed, or need to submit a change? Share your department’s contact hours using this form. 

Only one person needs to submit the form for each department.  

Please share the link with your students to help them connect with the services they need. 

For questions, contact Lauren Reuscher, University Information, at 

September 2020

Recording: Sept. Staff Senate Meeting on Telework

Kevin Rockmann, Professor of Management, Dean’s Scholar, School of Business. Photo by: Creative Services/George Mason University

The September Staff Senate meeting featured Dr. Kevin W. Rockmann, professor of management and dean’s scholar, School of Business. Dr. Rockmann shared thoughts on telework culture and its effect on employee well-being.

September 2020

EmployeeExperience Magazine | September 2020

The Virginia Department of Human Resource Management’s Office of Workforce Engagement has published the third edition of its magazine for employees by employees, EmployeeExperience.

Read it for engagement ideas for managers, get to know employees statewide, find out what some are doing to help their communities, see some in action for National Employee Health and Fitness Month, ideas for movement activities, and recipes. 

September 2020

Mason Nation 9/11 Virtual Day of Service

This year’s Mason Nation 9/11 Virtual Day of Service is scheduled for Friday, Sept. 11, 2020. This year’s day of service will be a little different, given the impact of COVID-19, but we are committed to providing our students, faculty, staff, alumni, and community members with the opportunity to make a difference and give back to the community.

There are over 20 service projects available. For more information and to RSVP for the 9/11 Virtual Day of Service, visit 

Participants will have a chance to: 

  • Recognize the value of an individual’s contribution to our community’s effort towards positive social change 
  • Engage and participate in service projects to support our community 
  • Describe at least one way they can promote positive social change within an organization or in society in general 
  • Participate in active self-reflection regarding one’s own leadership and how they use their experience to contribute to positive change

This year’s Mason Nation 9/11 Virtual Day of Service is designed to allow for flexibility and encourages staff to engage in service as they are able to. We realize schedules are very busy and complex, so we are offering several different service projects for everyone to participate in virtually on their own time. We have also created a few Zoom rooms for participants to join in if they would like to connect and engage with folks who are working on similar service projects during the day. This year’s virtual service projects are also designed to allow for family and friends to participate. We are excited to share that we have partnered with military veteran Ben King from Armor Down to host our first-ever morning mindfulness and meditation session. 

RSVP for a service project (feel free to RSVP for more than one) so we can track where our service and outreach is taking place. If you would like to participate in our Mason Nation 9/11 Day of Service Social Media Campaign to track our service, please use #masongivesback when posting and sharing photos or email photos directly to Lisa Snyder at 

We hope you will also be able to join us for a few other amazing programs for this year’s Day of Service! 

Mason Nation 9/11 Day of Service Fair

Don’t forget to RSVP for our annual George Mason University Service Fair. Connect with more than 45 different community partners and leaders, discover various service opportunities, and learn more about the issues facing our diverse local communities. This is an excellent opportunity to learn more about various community organizations and the volunteer opportunities they may offer.

Held virtually on Zoom from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., join us for a great afternoon of engaging with our local community partners!  

Arlington Police, Fire and Sheriff 9/11 Memorial 5k

Join the George Mason University team and run where you live. The Arlington Police, Fire and Sheriff 9/11 Memorial 5K Race provides an avenue for local area businesses and residents to remember the victims of the attacks on 9/11. The race also honors the countless first-responders and military personnel who responded that day and honors their continuous fight in the war on terrorism.

This year’s event will take place virtually and all proceeds will benefit the Pentagon Memorial Fund.