May 2024

Spring 2024 “How to Thrive at Mason” Boot Camp

A woman sitting under a tree in blossom, staring at a lake (Mason Pond). The George Mason University logo. Header reads: Spring 2024 How to thrive at Mason! Boot Camp.

As you may already be aware, the Spring 2024 “How to Thrive at Mason” Boot Camp is fast approaching! The agenda is now available on the Boot Camp page and registration is open until Friday, May 10! Click here to Register (requires login). This virtual learning opportunity will take place from May 14-16 from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. each day. Zoom links for all sessions will be available prior to the start of the event.

This event is intended for all Mason employees – from newcomers to long-timers – and will provide a free professional development opportunity focused on skill attainment and refinement, while providing support across the university. The main purpose is to focus on connecting and collaborating across the university to help break down silos. The event will increase the awareness of interconnectedness on processes and procedures, as well as providing the “big picture.”

All sessions will be recorded and made available at a later date. Please send any questions to the Boot Camp Planning & Logistics Team.

Download the pdf flyer.

May 2024

GMU Toastmasters Open House

GMU Toastmasters will host their last Open House of the 2023-2024 Academic Year. Visitors can learn about Toastmasters both in-person and virtually! The meeting will occur in person at Merten Hall, Room 3300, or via Zoom. For those who want to join on Zoom, follow this link.

Toastmasters International is a nonprofit educational organization that builds confidence and teaches public speaking skills through a worldwide network of clubs that meet online and in person. In a supportive community or corporate environment, members prepare and deliver speeches, respond to impromptu questions, and give and receive constructive feedback. It is through this regular practice that members are empowered to meet personal and professional communication goals. Founded in 1924, the organization is headquartered in Englewood, Colorado, and has approximately 270,000 members in more than 14,200 clubs in 148 countries. George Mason University Toastmasters Club (GMUT) was established on June 6, 2008.

To learn more about GMU Toastmasters, follow this link.

May 2024

Announcements from Auxiliary Services and Operations

  • Planning for Orientation? Our on-campus Print Hub offers customized prints like flyers, postcards, yard signs, pull-up banners, and more! Elevate your events and projects with custom prints PLUS free delivery to your office.
  • Save this summer with Patriot Perks! While you’re out and about in Fairfax, don’t forget to check our ever-growing list of restaurants, hair salons, nail salons, activities and more where you receive a discount with your Mason ID!
May 2024

Patriot Packout

Patriot Packout (PPO), Mason’s annual sustainable move-out initiative ends on May 10! Donate like-new and gently used personal items at the Fairfax Campus, Science and Technology Campus, and the Smithsonian-Mason School of Conservation.

Donations are redistributed to individual Mason Patriots, on-campus resources, and local community members, preventing useful items from ending up in the trash.

PPO 2024’s donations support the Patriot Pantry, Trans Clothing Closet, Art Supply Sharing Closet, First Gen+ Center, Parking and Transportation’s bike programs, and Food For Others, among others.

Visit the PPO webpage for a list of accepted donations, campus donation locations, and volunteer opportunities.


May 2024

Announcements from Faculty and Staff Engagement

Apply for the Faculty and Staff Book Scholarship

Mason faculty and staff are invited to apply for the Faculty and Staff Book Scholarship, a $250 scholarship, dedicated to paying for books, software, and supplies needed for Mason courses. 

The criteria to apply are as follows: 

  • Enrolled in a degree or graduate certificate program at Mason; 
  • Have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0; 
  • Have at least one year of service at Mason; and 
  • Earned an overall rating of Successful or Outstanding in their most recent performance evaluation. 

To apply, complete the nomination form by May 24, 2024. Please include a written statement (max. 500 words) outlining your educational and professional goals, your program of study, and how the scholarship will positively impact your academic pursuits. The statement should also address how you uphold the Mason graduate values of being an engaged citizen, a well-rounded scholar, and one who is prepared to act. 

Email with questions. 

Mason Degree and Certificate Milestones: Let’s Celebrate Your Success!
Mason Classified Staff, A/P Faculty, I/R Faculty, Adjunct Faculty, and Non-Student Wage employees are invited to share information on the degree/certificate (Trade certification/license, Associates, Bachelors, Masters, Graduate certificate, Doctorate, etc.) that they have earned during this current academic year.

Human Resources is eager to highlight achievements and success stories of Mason faculty and staff who are seeking continual professional development.   

Complete the Celebrate Degree/Certificate Milestones Survey and the HR Faculty and Staff Engagement team will follow-up with you on your successes! 

Standard Telework Form: Documentation Updates for Classified Staff

Classified Staff are required to follow the Department of Human Resources Policy 1.61 (Teleworking).

In accordance with DHRM Policy 1.61, “all (classified) employees applying for telework must submit a Standard Telework Agreement.” 

The state has recently made an online platform, for telework agreement submission, available to higher education institutions. As per state guidelines, George Mason classified staff requesting a new telework agreement or a renewal with changes must use the COVApp form.   

The Standard Telework Request and Renewal form in Dynamic Forms will be used to initiate all telework requests. Renewals with the same number of telework days previously approved by the state or temporary requests (14 calendar days or less) will continue with all workflow processes in dynamic forms.   

New telework requests or renewals with a change in number of telework days will begin initiation in the Standard Telework Request and Renewal form.  The Faculty and Staff Engagement team will initiate the official form using the COV App system.

Following form initiation for new telework requests or renewals with changes, employees will receive an email from COVApps (VITA) The email has been vetted, is legitimate, and will ask you “to click here” to complete your form request. 

The telework form is available in the state’s COV Application system, which uses the same login information as Cardinal.

Classified employees and their supervisors must have Cardinal access to complete and approve forms. To access Cardinal login or locate your Cardinal ID in Patriot Web, use the directions here to do so. Once a login is established, follow the state’s guide detailing how to complete your form as an employee. Supervisors should follow the state’s guide on how to process forms as a manager.

May 2024

Updates from Parking and Transportation

Deadline Extended: 2024 Transportation Survey Underway

The 2024 Transportation Survey is underway through Friday, May 10. Please take a few minutes to share how you get to, from, and around campus. The survey takes about ten minutes to complete. After completing the survey, you can opt-in to a raffle for prize packages worth approximately $30 each. Raffle recipients will be randomly selected from those who opt-in.

As background to the survey, 30% of Mason’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are attributed to commuting. By participating in this survey, you will help us understand and improve how Mason commutes and add your feedback about key issues.

Visit here to participate in the survey.

It’s Bike Your Way May: Spring Cycling Opportunities
  1. Bike Month Challenge Started May 1. May is National Bike Month!  Help grow Mason’s biking culture. Parking and Transportation invites you to join the Bike Month Challenge run by Registration is free and you can sign up as an individual.
  2. Bike to Work Day on Friday, May 17. Celebrate the Washington region’s Bike to Work Day! Start your day off cycling with pit stops all over the VA, DC, MD area. Find more details and register, here.
  3. Check out Lot of resources including smart cycling videos from the League of American Bicyclists, how to get connected to cycling in your community, how to use a bike rack on transit and much more!
Motor Pool Fuel Cards, Required Training, and Reminders

Fuel cards are available for Motor Pool rentals to have fuel charges charged back to the university. Drop by the Transportation Office located in Lot C to check out a Fuel card before your rental pick-up date. Entering Fuel Agreements or allowing Enterprise to refuel after returning vehicles empty is not permitted. If you have a fuel card in your possession from a past trip, please remember to return it.

Drivers for Motor Pool rentals must complete a University Driver Safety Awareness Training and a refresher training every two years through the Office of Risk Management to be eligible to drive.

To be eligible to drive a maxi van, you must be at least 20 years of age and pass the “Van Driver Familiarization Class.” Outside of the Commonwealth of VA, Enterprise’s age requirement to drive a 12-15 passenger van is 25. Links to upcoming training sessions and important reminders, can be found here.

Summer 2024 Parking Permits On Sale

Summer parking passes went on sale on Wednesday, May 1. Online sales only. Please visit for details. Reach out to with any questions.

Parking and Transportation’s Patriot Pack Out Donation Drive for Patriot Pantry

Would you like to help someone in need? Through 4pm on Wednesday, May 15, make an in-person donation at any Parking Services office to benefit Patriot Pantry and reduce the cost of an outstanding parking citation by $15, $20, or $30. For important details, including the donation/credit framework for donations, please visit

Vanpool Survey

Are you a full-time faculty/staff member who is interested in another way to get to work at Mason? Would you like to have your commute costs reimbursed up to $315/month tax-free, not have to do all the driving, park free at Mason, and reduce carbon emissions? If so, consider vanpooling.  Parking and Transportation is continuing its vanpool outreach and has developed a short vanpool match survey.

If you have any questions, please reach out to us at 703-993-2828 or via email to

Summer 2024 Mason Shuttles Schedules Available

The Summer 2024 schedules for Mason Shuttles and a summer service summary are posted at Summer service begins on Monday, May 13 and is Monday-Friday only. Spring service ends for all routes on Friday, May 10 (except On-Demand which ended on Sunday, May 5).

Friday, May 10 is the last day of service for the West Campus shuttle until fall. West Campus permit holders could begin parking in the non-restricted general areas on the East Campus for the summer beginning at 8pm on Thursday, May 2.  The On-Demand shuttle will not be operating for the summer.  The last weekend for spring service on Gunston Mason, Sandy Creek/Metro, and the Fairfax/SciTech routes until fall was May 4-5.

There will be no Mason Shuttles service in observance of the holidays on Monday, May 27 (Memorial Day), Wednesday, June 19 (Juneteenth), and Thursday, July 4 (Independence Day).

If you have any questions, please contact us at 703-993-2828 or via email at




May 2024

May General Meeting Recording

Photo by: Ron Aira/Office of University Branding

The May Staff Senate general meeting featured guest speaker Trishana Bowden, vice president for advancement and alumni relations, and president, George Mason University Foundation.

As a follow-up answer to one of the questions asked by a senator, just over 1,500 faculty and staff members are alumni of George Mason University.

For those who missed the meeting, or would like to re-watch the session, the recording is now available here.

May 2024

June General Meeting Announcement

Photo provided.

The June Staff Senate general meeting will feature guest speaker Mary Lucal, vice president, Human Resources, and chief human resource officer.

Wednesday, June 5
9:40 a.m. to 10 a.m. – Staff Senate Recognition Ceremony
10 a.m. to 11 a.m. – General Business Meeting
11 a.m. to noon – Guest Speaker

Location Change: Constituents are invited to join in person in Merten 1201 or join the meeting via Zoom*.
Passcode: SS123
Call in: 301-715-8592 or 267-831-0333
Meeting ID: 946 9452 3314 / Passcode: 760740

*The Staff Senate is requiring that virtual attendees join our Staff Senate General Meetings with their Patriot Pass credentials. If you are already signed into Zoom using your Mason-licensed Zoom account, you should not see a difference. If you are not already signed into your Mason-licensed Zoom account, you will be told authentication is required to join, and prompted to sign in. For more information, please access our helpful FAQ document.

The Staff Senate collected questions in advance for consideration. We will also be accepting live questions, time permitting.


Junior Patriot May 2024

Junior Patriot Passport

Junior Patriot, Cailey, displaying her completed Junior Passport Card

The Mason Staff Senate enjoyed meeting Junior Patriots at the Fairfax Campus on April 25, in a scavenger hunt for stamps that were collected on a provided passport card at different sites and activities. A special thank you to the sites, locations, and Human Resources for their support in making the activity a success!  The activity was part of Take Your Junior Patriot to Work Day!

Congratulations to Andrea Ponger and Kaden for being selected as winners in the random drawing after collecting five stamps and submitting their passport card to the Staff Senate!

Locations visited: (find a hint to the location with the answer below)
START HERE: Your mission begins, pick up your card, find five stamps, and enter for a prize!
  • Find Amanda with the Staff Senate on the Merten Lawn, 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.
Textbooks, swag, gifts, merch, and more. You can find it all here in one SUPER store!
  • Barnes and Noble Bookstore, Johnson Center, 1st Floor, Check-out Counter, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
If you enjoy the performing arts, visiting this concert hall is great place to start!
  • Center for the Arts, Box Office Window, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Graphic design, painting, sculpture, and photography…these are just a few installations you will see!
  • Find Mary in the Art and Design Building, School of Art, Suite 2050 (main desk), 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
More than just textbooks, the shelves are stacked high, check out what you need so you don’t have to buy!
  • 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.: Fenwick Library, Reading Room 2001
  • 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Fenwick Library, Room 1014 A & B
Forage the forest, sow some seeds, discover ways to give back to our Earth all that it needs!
The day has been filled with a lot of fun make sure to save some energy for Dance, Dance Revolution!
  • 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., The Hub, Corner Pocket. Main Desk
Looking for s’more fun? The “sky” is the limit!
  • 1 p.m. to 2 p.m., Skyline Fitness Center during the Fun, Tents, and S’mores activity for all ages
Hint: A blend of art and science, creativity and design, a keyboard and a quest are just a few things you will find!
  • 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Computer Game Design and the Virginia Serious Game Institute, Art & Design Building, Room 2002
March 2024 April 2024 May 2024

Staff Senate and AKA Co-Sponsored Blood Drive

The George Mason University Staff Senate and Alpha Kappa Alpha (AKA) Sorority hosted a blood drive on Monday, April 29, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the parking lot near The Hub. Thank you to everyone who generously donated. INOVA successfully collected 19 blood products which also means 57 lives can now be potentially saved. The blood collected has been tested and is already on their hospital shelves.