Around Mason: Week of Feb. 6, 2024


Faculty/Staff Announcements

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Campus Updates

Nominate Today: Outstanding Achievement Awards 

The Outstanding Achievement Awards celebrate the hard work, dedication, and achievements of Mason’s faculty and staff across several awards categories in support of the university's values and mission. Nominate a colleague today!  

Deadline to submit nominations is Monday, Feb. 19, at 9 a.m. Contact Stacey Ellis, faculty and staff engagement, with questions. 

COVID Test Kits Available on Campus 

Mason faculty, staff, and students can get a free COVID at-home test on-campus with a valid Mason ID. Test kits are available at One Stop or Express convenience stores on the Fairfax Campus and Student Health Services Clinics during operating hours. Pick up a free test kit and be prepared before you need it. Student Health Services is partnering with Mason Dining to provide these tests to the Mason community. Contact Student Health Services with questions. 

February Staff Senate Meeting

The February Staff Senate meeting will feature guest speaker Missy Cummings, director of Mason's Autonomy and Robotics Center, to discuss her work in artificial intelligence.   

Wednesday, Feb. 7   
10 a.m. to 11 a.m. – Guest Speaker   
11 a.m. to noon – General Meeting   

Constituents are invited to attend in person on the Fairfax Campus in Merten Hall, Room 1201, or join the meeting via Zoom. 

Study Abroad Fair 

The Global Education Office will host the spring Study Abroad Fair on Thursday, Feb. 8, between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. on the Fairfax Campus in the Johnson Center, Dewberry Hall. Students, faculty, and staff can learn more about global education, talk to faculty and partners, and enjoy some light refreshments. Get more information and register

Training and Professional Development

Upcoming Writing Center Workshops 

The Writing Center will host a series of workshops for Thesis/Dissertation Week. Workshops are open to Mason students, faculty, and staff. Topics include: 

  • Faculty Panel: How to Navigate Your Post-Coursework Journey  
  • Writing Your Way into Your Research: Writing an Introduction for Your Dissertation 
  • Strategies for Getting Started on a Draft 
  • Common Questions about the Thesis and Dissertation Process 
  • Graduate Student Panel: Grad Students Reflect on the Thesis/Dissertation Phase 

Visit the website for workshop dates, times, and registration. Contact the Writing Center with questions. 

University Life Supervision Collective: Student Staff Supervisors

Join the University Life Supervision Collective for a focused discussion on student supervision. Gain valuable insights from experienced supervisors as they share practical approaches for effective student staff management. Explore the strategies shaping successful campus work environments that foster student development, inclusivity, belonging, and well-being. This is a virtual/online event.

Student Staff Supervisors: Perspectives, Practices, Resources
Thursday, Feb. 8, at 2 p.m.

Resources for You

Create an Account: 

What is It’s the go-to site for planning your commute to Mason. Looking for someone with whom to share a ride? See who might live in your general area and coming to campus at similar times. Looking for a biking buddy? Want to track your commutes and see how much CO2 you’re reducing? Check it out. Create an account today! Contact Mason Transportation with questions. 

Film Screening: ‘The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks’ 

The College of Science STEM Accelerator, Women Leaders in STEM, and the Visiting Filmmakers Series are pleased to collaborate on a free screening and discussion of the feature film, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.  

Monday, Feb. 26, at 5:30 p.m. 
Fairfax Campus, Johnson Center, Cinema 

The film tells the story of Henrietta Lacks, an African American woman from Roanoke, Virginia, whose cells were used without her consent to create the first immortal human cell line. This event is free and open to the public. Learn more

Love to Bike? Winter Bike to Mason Day Is Friday, Feb. 9   

Winter Bike to Work Day is the Friday before Valentine’s Day. Join Mason Parking and Transportation on Friday, Feb. 9, for a little bike love. Stop by the Merten Hall Lawn on the Fairfax Campus between 7:30–9:30 a.m. with your bike for a beverage and some biking-related giveaways.

Upcoming Performances at Mason  

Artists in Conversation: Cotton  
Tuesday, Feb. 6, at 7 p.m.  
Off-campus: Old Town Hall (3999 University Drive, Fairfax, Virginia 22030)  

This event features a performance of composer Damien Geter’s moving song cycle inspired by the haunting “Cotton” photography of acclaimed artist John Dowell, whose works are in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and other galleries. Each song in the cycle features the poetry of Nikki Giovanni, Marc Bamuthi Joseph, and other Black American poets, and explores the Black American journey through the lens of the cotton industry. Geter will participate in a talk back following the performance. This event is part of Virginia Opera’s second annual Pride in Black Voices program. 

Visual Voices with Taekyeom Lee  
Mason Exhibitions and Mason School of Art  
Thursday, Feb. 8, at 4:45 p.m.  
Fairfax Campus, Center for the Arts, and via Zoom  

Taekyeom Lee is an educator, maker, and designer whose research explores unconventional materials and digital methods to create 3D type, graphics, and even designed objects. This research began with two questions: Where does typography belong in the post-digital age? How do we bridge digital and physical experiences?   

Les Grands Ballets Canadiens: Dancing Beethoven  
Saturday, Feb. 10, at 8 p.m.  
Fairfax Campus, Center for the Arts  

Québec’s first professional ballet company, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens, debuts at the Center for the Arts with a tribute to the awe-inspiring and monumental works of Beethoven with Dancing Beethoven. The program opens with the incredible Symphony No. 5 and concludes with Beethoven’s stirring Symphony No. 7, featuring choreography by the late Uwe Scholz and showcasing the ensemble’s precision, energy, and artistry. 

Drum Tao 
Saturday, Feb. 10, at 8 p.m.  
SciTech Campus, Hylton Performing Arts Center, Merchant Hall  

Taiko sensation Drum Tao returns with its intensely energetic, highly visual, and pulse-pounding take on the ancient art of Japanese drumming. Merging a Samurai ethos with a rock ‘n’ roll attitude, Drum Tao presents an unforgettable show that is a feast for the senses. Athleticism and contemporary costumes blend with pulsating rhythms, captivating choreography, and vibrant sets. 

Mason Exhibitions Arlington: An Incarcerated Salon
Friday, Feb. 16, from 7–9 p.m.
Off-campus: Mason Exhibitions Arlington (3601 Fairfax Dr, Arlington, Virginia 22201)  
Artist Carlos Walker will kick off the night with a Political Rap Battle performance. There will be a variety of musical performances, spoken word poetry, and other creative presentations. The microphone will be open to any audience members who would like to perform. Faces of Resilience features works by 14 previously or currently incarcerated artists who participate in year-round art workshops at SCI Phoenix, Southeast Pennsylvania’s maximum-security prison for men, located 33 miles outside of Philadelphia. The exhibit is supplemented by the works of three professional artists: Maria Gaspar, Sara Bennett, and the late Winfred Rembert (1945–2021).

Mason Artist-in-Residence: A.I.M by Kyle Abraham
Saturday, Feb. 17, at 8 p.m.
Fairfax Campus, Center for the Arts

MacArthur Genius Award-winning choreographer Kyle Abraham has developed a dance aesthetic that defies genre, mixing and morphing from social dance to classical dance styles and back again. The center presents his visionary works using various dance and music styles to uncover the relationships between identity, history, and geography. This Black-led contemporary dance company aims to create a body of dance-based work that is galvanized by Black culture and history.

Saturday, Feb. 17, at 8 p.m.
SciTech Campus, 
Hylton Performing Arts Center, Merchant Hall
With its attitude, thrilling footwork, and powerful drumming, Argentinian sensation MALEVO draws heavily from the Argentinian folk dance Malambo to create an exhilarating, innovative experience. MALEVO was named “Cultural Ambassadors for the National Identity of Argentina” and have been seen on NBC’s America’s Got Talent. Don’t miss their electrifying Hylton Center debut.

Mason Symphony Orchestra: A Tribute to Professor Anthony Maiello
Wednesday, Feb. 21, at 8 p.m.
Fairfax Campus, 
Center for the Arts
The Mason Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Soo Han, comprises outstanding string, wind, and percussion players from throughout the Dewberry Family School of Music. This concert features winners of the the school’s student concerto competition.