October 2022 Profile of a Senator

Meet Lizzie Barnfield, Staff Senator and Administrative Assistant for Administration and Faculty Affairs, Office of the Dean, College of Engineering and Computing


Lizzie Barnfield, College Engineering and Computing. Photo by Creative Services/George Mason University

Role: I primarily support College of Engineering and Computing (CEC) Interim Divisional Dean Ariela Sofer and also frequently step in to provide technical and administrative support for other members of the Dean’s Office as needed. As part of my role administrating faculty actions in CEC, I serve on the RPT (Review, Promotion, and Tenure) Administrator Working Group to help lead and troubleshoot use of Interfolio software for faculty and staff across CEC. I also serve as the coordinator for Mason Engineering Online activities and act as the administrator for the Cardinal Education initiative—a course-sharing program among six universities across Virginia.

Mason journey: Prior to joining Mason in 2019, I worked in a public library for eight years where I learned a lot about how to support a diverse community with a variety of specialized needs. When all of Mason pivoted to remote work in early 2020, I was part of the team that piloted new software and helped figure out what was needed to keep business in CEC running as usual. In 2021, our college went through a reorganization, splitting into the Volgenau School of Engineering and the School of Computing under the umbrella of the newly formed College of Engineering and Computing. There have been a lot of exciting changes during my time at Mason so far, and I’m looking forward to what the future will bring!

Best thing about working at Mason: Without a doubt, the best thing about working at Mason is the phenomenally talented people I get to call my co-workers. While it sometimes seems like we’re always trying to do more with less, it’s great to work in an environment where you know there’s always someone to turn to for help when it’s needed.

Why serve on the Staff Senate: In an organization as large as Mason, I feel like it’s sometimes hard for the right hand to know what the left is doing. In joining the Staff Senate, I hope to learn more about central Mason initiatives, projects, and concerns and pass that information on to my fellow staff members so that we can all do our jobs as effectively as possible. I also see the Staff Senate as a great opportunity to advocate for the best interests of my co-workers and put forward some of the great ideas they have for making Mason the best it can be.

At the end of the day: I’ve always loved helping and supporting people, and I’m so proud to have the opportunity to give back to my co-workers by representing them on the Staff Senate. Thank you all for the incredible effort you put in every day!

October 2022

Collaborate with the Office of Government and Community Relations

Mason’s Office of Government and Community Relations paves the path for successful interactions with federal, state, and local governments, as well as community groups.

For guidance on connecting with government officials, community outreach, Chamber of Commerce engagement, and more, check out this flyer.

October 2022

Updates from Human Resources & Payroll

Registration Open: Crucial Conversations Skillshops 

Mason’s Organizational Development and Learning team is offering a Crucial Conversations workshop series beginning October 20. Learn how to turn disagreement into dialogue for personal and professional success! Led by certified trainers, these interactive virtual sessions will allow participants space to engage in discussion, real-time practice, and group support. 

Registration is limited, so don’t wait. Sign up today! 

Virginia529 Webinar: Saving for Education 

Thinking about saving for education? Join the HR & Payroll team and Virginia529 for a special webinar on October 25 at 1 p.m. 

Saving for future education expenses for a child, a grandchild, or even yourself can seem overwhelming. In this webinar, you’ll learn how a Virginia529 account can help you save for tuition and other costs, take advantage of tax-free earnings, and meet your savings goals. As a bonus, Mason employees who attend this webinar will receive an exclusive offer – a $25 gift code to open a new Invest529 account. 

Register via Zoom. For more information, contact Marissa Ehrhardt at 

October 2022

Updates from Parking & Transportation


Save the Date: Transportation Fair in Fairfax and at Mason Square 

Join us on Thursday, October 13 on the Fairfax Campus from noon to 2 p.m. (Merten Lawn) and on the Mason Square Campus from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. (Van Metre Plaza) for a transportation fair. Local and regional transportation providers will be available to share information and answer any of your commuting questions. 

Bicycle Commuting 101: Online via Zoom 

Bicycling to campus can be fun and great for your well-being. Join Delia Johnson from the College of Visual and Performing Arts and a League of American Bicyclists certified instructor for Bicycle Commuting 101. During this session at noon on Tuesday, October 18 via Zoom, Delia will share information to help you feel more confident about getting to campus on two wheels.  

This session is open to faculty, staff and students. Register here, and Zoom meeting details will be sent to you. 

October 2022

Announcements from Information Technology Services

IT Security Awareness Training Due November 16  

Annual IT Security Awareness Training is now open in MasonLEAPS accounts of all Mason employees, associates, and affiliates. Employees have until Wednesday, November 16 to complete their training. Employees who fail to take the training by the deadline will have their accounts disabled, and their supervisors or manager will be notified. If your account is disabled, you will need to contact the ITS Support Center to re-enable the account to take the training. Employees who handle sensitive information will be required to take additional role-based training. The training provides information about protecting Mason’s IT systems and employees’ information, which is a priority for ITS.    


Cybersecurity Awareness Month Schedule of Events 

Join Information Technology Services (ITS) throughout October to observe Cybersecurity Awareness Month with cybersecurity-related events, including Zoom presentations on Ransomware and You (Wednesday, October 12, at 3 p.m.) and Everyday Cybersecurity (Thursday, October 20, at noon). ITS will also host its annual Ask Me Anything with the IT Security Office on Reddit (Wednesday, October 26, at noon). Follow ITS on Twitter @GeorgeMasonITS all month long for tips about online safety.

October 2022

Upcoming Performances at Mason

View the complete schedules for the Center for the Arts and the Hylton Performing Arts Center.

Visiting Filmmakers Series: Unapologetic with Filmmaker Ashley O’Shay
Thursday, Oct. 13, at 6 p.m.
Johnson Center Cinema

Join us for a screening and discussion of Unapologetic with filmmaker Ashley O’Shay. After two police killings, Black millennial organizers challenge a Chicago administration complicit in state violence against its Black residents. Told through the lens of Janaé and Bella, two fierce abolitionist leaders, Unapologetic is a deep look into the Movement for Black Lives, from the police murder of Rekia Boyd to the election of Mayor Lori Lightfoot.

Fall Choral Festival Concert
Dewberry School of Music
Saturday, Oct. 15, at 4 p.m.

Center for the Arts
George Mason University choirs are under the direction of Lisa Billingham. The choral ensembles perform a wide variety of music each semester, ranging from classical styles to multicultural works and popular music.

Faculty Artist Showcase
Dewberry School of Music
Sunday, Oct. 16, at 3 p.m.
Harris Theatre

Come attend this annual showcase recital of performances by Mason’s stellar Dewberry School of Music faculty, including vocal, instrumental, and piano artists.

Mason Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band 
Dewberry School of Music 
Monday, Oct. 17, at 8 p.m. 
The Mason Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band open the 2022–23 concert cycle with a shared concert titled Exclamations! Works performed by both ensembles are written by composers whose artistic voices, both past and present, celebrate the power of music and music-making. This inaugural concert with Mason’s newly appointed Director of Bands William L. Lake Jr. will include a pre-concert performance and talk back of Richard Strauss’ Serenade for 13 Winds. 

Mason Jazz Ensemble: Fall Concert 
Wednesday, Oct. 19, at 8 p.m. 
Harris Theatre 
The Mason Jazz Ensemble, directed by Jim Carroll, performs their fall concert. This concert will feature outstanding soloists and pay tribute to the great big bands of Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Dizzy Gillespie, Thad Jones, and Rob McConnell.

Visual Voices Lecture with Silas Munro 
Mason Exhibitions and School of Art 
Thursday, Oct. 20, at 7:30 p.m. 
Hosted on Zoom 
Silas Munro engages multi-modal practices that inspire people to be the best versions of themselves in order to effect positive change on society as a whole. 

Mason Opera Scenes 
Dewberry School of Music 
Friday, Oct. 21 at 3 p.m. 
Harris Theatre 
Come see highlights from standard operas featuring all your favorite characters singing the maestro’s brilliant arias and ensembles in a condensed staging with piano accompaniment, performed by Mason vocal students. 

Mummenschanz: 50 Years  
Sunday, Oct23, at 7 p.m.  
Hylton Performing Arts Center 
Spectacular large-scale masks, clever puppetry, and inventive use of shadow and light delight the whole family in Mummenschanz’s 50 Years. Mummenschanz became a household name in the 1970s thanks to special appearances on The Muppet ShowJohnny Carson Show, and Sesame Street. Beloved by people of all ages around the globe, Mummenschanz sparks the imagination with its manipulation of everyday objects while offering lighthearted and universal insights into the human condition. This performance is appropriate for all ages.  

October 2022

Announcements from Operations and Business Services

Mason Faculty and Staff Save with Patriot Perks
Patriot Perks are discounts available at local businesses offered to the Mason community, including faculty, staff, retirees, alumni and students. With over 150 businesses enrolled, including restaurants, salons, and more. Visit the new Patriot Perks website to find the discounts available to you!   


Mason Affinity Debit Card
Get ready to show your Mason pride with the new Wells Fargo exclusive Mason affinity debit card available to all students, faculty and staff. Enroll today by visiting a local branch with your Mason ID.   


All Faculty and Staff Receive a 10 Percent Discount at the Bookstore
Every Friday is Spirit Friday, so don’t forget to wear green and gold! No Mason gear? No problem! All faculty and staff receive a 10 percent discount on Mason Gear in the bookstore with their Mason ID.


October 2022

October is Sustainability Month

In October, Mason will celebrate Sustainability Month through sustainable programs, events, and initiatives. From volunteering to helping Mason reduce its environmental impact, there are many ways to get involved! The Office of Sustainability encourages the Mason community to make an impact, exemplifying our university’s commitment to a just and sustainable future for all. For everything related to Sustainability Month, please visit 


October 2022

Patriots Thriving Together

At Mason, we’re committed to everyone Thriving Together. You’ll find a range of resources designed to improve your well-being and mental health on the Patriots Thriving Together website at

Mason’s mental health and well-being resources are organized under three categories: non-credited learning experiences, academic credit experiences, and general resources.

The Patriots Thriving Together resources are designed for all community members. The best well-being practices and habits are the ones that work for you. Try some of these activities and discover which ones help you on your well-being journey! 

October 2022

Mason Nation Thriving Together 5K

Plan to join your fellow Patriots for the 3rd Annual Mason Nation Thriving Together 5K as we celebrate well-being and support our Mason students!

Run or walk with us Saturday, Oct. 29, at 9 a.m. on the Fairfax Campus, or virtually from any location you choose. Registration is $15 for Mason students and $35 for everyone else. Proceeds will support Mason’s Counseling and Psychological Services Fund, which helps Mason students access vital mental health care.

Let’s thrive together! Learn more at 

Register today!