Housing Move-Out Update

Dear Patriot,

We hope your online classes are going well and that you are staying safe and healthy during this time. We recognize that collecting your belongings and moving out have been heavily on your mind and we appreciate your patience through this evolving process. We have created a flexible move-out process that allows students  two move-out options in an effort to accommodate varying needs. Students must select their option by June 1st.

Students can enter the Housing Portal and select their option as soon as their assigned timeslot opens and will be able to complete and submit the form until close of business on June 1st.

May 1st at 9:00am = Adams, Amherst, Blue Ridge, Brunswick, Carroll, Commonwealth
May 1st at 9:30am= Dickenson, Dominion, Eastern Shore, Essex, Franklin, Grayson
May 1st at  10:00am= Hampton Roads, Harrison, Jackson, Jefferson
May 1st at 10:30am= Kennedy, Liberty Square, Lincoln
May 1st at 11:00am= Madison, ACGC, Monroe, Northern Neck
May 1st at 11:30am= Potomac Heights
May 1st at 12:00pm= Piedmont, Rogers, Roosevelt
May 1st at 12:30pm= Sandbridge, Taylor, Tidewater
May 1st at 1:00pm= Townhouses, Truman, Washington, Whitetop, Wilson

More information about the two move-out options are below:
Self-Service Move-Out Option 1 (Students Pack and Move Their Own Belongings)
  • Beginning on May 1st students will be able to login to the Housing Portal to select a two-hour timeslot between June 10th-30th to remove their belongings and complete the move-out process. Only one student in a room/suite/apartment will be allowed to move-out at a time.
  • Housing and Residence Life will not issue green bins for the move-out process. Students are encouraged to bring their own hand trucks and dollies to assist with the move-out process.
  • Students are allowed to bring one guest to assist with the move-out process and are required to wear face coverings during the move out process. Face coverings will not be provided by HRL.
  • Students are expected to remove all personal items and trash within their rooms. Housekeeping ​will deep clean all spaces after students complete move out.
  • Should a student not be able to come and pick up their belongings in person, a proxy may be designated to pick up belongings. The proxy should also be provided with an inventory of the belongings to be packed. Students utilizing the proxy option will need to select a move-out time that falls between Monday-Friday.
  • Students will be provided a parking pass to utilize in the event they or their guest do not have a Mason pass. The parking pass should be displayed while the student is completing the move out process.
  • Please note that students who miss their appointment should contact housing@gmu.edu for assistance. It is not guaranteed that students will receive a new appointment time and may be required to participate in the full-service move out option.
Full-Serviced Move-Out Option 2
  • Housing will identify an approved moving company to pack up and store the belongings of students that are not able to or are not comfortable with returning to campus to finish the move out process.
  • Students who select this option will have their belongings packed up and stored in a facility located in Springfield, VA.
  • Students will need to complete an online inventory of their belongings, both in their room and any common areas of the assigned space.
  • Students will be responsible for covering the cost of this move.  Estimates for moving expenses will be approximately $700 which includes packing, moving, and storage. Students are responsible for any fees associated with shipping or retrieving their items directly from the facility.
  • Students will be responsible for contracting directly with the selected company by June 10th in order to have their belongings packed after all other students have moved out. If the student does not complete the contract with the moving company then the students’ belongings will be packed and moved for them by the selected moving company. Housing is not responsible for any damages or losses that may occur with the move.
  • Should a student have their belongings returned to campus for move-in and not pick up their belongings, Housing and Residence Life will retain the student’s belongings at an additional storage cost of $300 for 120 days. If the belongings are not claimed within 120 days, then the items will be disposed of for the student.
If you do not pick an option
  • Students who do not select an option by 5:00pm on June 1st will have their belongings packed and stored at their expense.
  • The anticipated expense per student is $700 for packing and storing student’s belongings, but could be higher dependent upon how many students select the full-service move option.
  • Housing and Residence Life is not responsible if any items are damaged or go missing during this process and as such, students who do not select an option are encouraged to work with their own insurance agency to obtain full value coverage for their belongings.
  • Should a student not pick up their belongings when they have been returned to campus, Housing and Residence Life will retain the student’s belongings at an additional storage cost of $300 for 120 days.
I already moved out and took all of my personal items
  • If you have already removed all of your personal belongings and do not need to utilize any of the options outlined above, please be sure to complete the Express Check-Out Form in the Housing Portal by June 1st.
  • If you have already completed this form, no additional actions are needed.
  • Students who may have moved out, but have not filled out the Express Check-Out form may be charged for belonging removal if items are not claimed prior to the moving company process
  • If a student has completely moved out but has not returned their hard keys to HRL, they should be mailed to the following address and include the student’s name and G# (Mason ID or copy of ID not necessary). Students will have until June 30th to return these keys before a charge will be issued to their student account.

    Housing and Residence Life
    4400 University Dr., MS 5C7
    Fairfax, VA 22030
 
Sincerely,
Housing and Residence Life

A message from Rector Tom Davis

Dear Mason Patriots:

The Board of Visitors will host a listening session on the university’s budget for 2020-2021 at 10 a.m. on May 6. We invite our entire campus community to participate, particularly our students.

This listening session is an opportunity for you to share your views with university leadership and ask questions specific to the 2020-2021 Financial Plan and tuition. Interim President Anne Holton and Visitor Simmi Bhuller will join me for the listening session, which will be conducted virtually.

We know the coronavirus has affected everyone differently, and has created financial anxiety and uncertainty for many of our students. The Board of Visitors needs to hear from you as we consider the budget for the upcoming school year.

We ask that you register your comments in advance using this link so that we can hear from as many people as possible during the listening session. All comments submitted through the survey link will be read and reviewed by the board in advance of our May 20 meeting to vote on the budget.  You may also request to deliver your comments live during the session. A link to the May 6 meeting will be available on the university’s home page.

We hope to move back to more normal operations as soon as we can, but we recognize the need especially in the current circumstances to be careful stewards of our resources so that we can maintain our mission of providing access to excellence for our students.

I hope you will take this opportunity to share your thoughts and feedback with us.

Sincerely,

Tom Davis
Rector, George Mason University

Fall Registration to Begin May 1, Summer Registration Ongoing

Dear Patriots,

We hope you are healthy, safe and well.

We are pleased to announce that registration for the fall 2020 semester begins this Friday, May 1. Your registration time will be e-mailed directly to you from the Office of the University Registrar.

We know that many of you have questions about the fall semester. University leadership continues to monitor the health crisis and is considering the best options for how classes will be delivered this fall, with the safety of the university community as our main priority.

At the same time, we remain committed to ensuring you stay on track. Therefore, we encourage you to work with your academic advisor now to register for the classes that will advance your progress toward degree completion. If you need to change your schedule after these decisions are made, you will be able to update your registration.

As options are considered for fall 2020 semester classes, know that the university will keep you informed about plans and any possible adjustments that may be necessitated by the COVID-19 crisis and guidance provided by public health officials or directives by the Commonwealth of Virginia. Please check the university’s coronavirus information page for updates.

We are all adjusting and adapting to the implications of COVID-19. At Mason, our foremost concern is your health, safety and well-being. The university is committed to supporting you, your learning and your continued academic and professional development.

Sincerely,

Mark R. Ginsberg
Interim Provost and Executive Vice President

Doug McKenna
University Registrar

Celebration of the Class of 2020 on May 22

Dear Mason Class of 2020:

I hope this email finds you well and that your classes are going smoothly as we move into the last few weeks of the spring semester. I know this is not the ending to your studies that you had envisioned. Despite this, I want you to know that I couldn’t be prouder of your resilience and your adaptability. You’re not only completing your coursework but many of you are taking time to help others through this difficult crisis.

As I mentioned last week in our virtual town hall and follow-up message, because of the public health risks and the governor’s orders, and not surprisingly, we are unable to hold a traditional Spring Commencement ceremony this May. And yet many of you responded to our survey about a future commemorative event and your message was overwhelmingly clear: You want to walk across the stage at EagleBank Arena in front of friends and family, and we want to celebrate with you. You will all be invited to participate in an in-person ceremony at a future date when it is safe to do so.

In the meanwhile, we want to celebrate your accomplishments this spring.  We have listened to your feedback on how best to do that, and I want to share with you the details about the Celebration of the Class of 2020.

We invite you to join us for a celebration of your efforts at 2 p.m. on Friday, May 22 on GMU-TV. This will include congratulatory messages from me and the deans, a short message from a member of the Class of 2020, a performance by the Green Machine, and special guests wishing you well. We hope you will take the time to celebrate your accomplishments and invite friends and family to do so as well.

In addition, each School and College will have its own dedicated graduation slide show with a message from your Dean and personalized slides for each graduate showing your name, degree, major and college. We invite you to share a photo along with an optional message for your personalized slide.

You will receive an email from gmuevent@gmu.edu with more information and additional specific details about what we can all look forward to during the celebration event.

We are all so proud of you and we can’t wait to honor you on May 22 and celebrate with you in person in the future.

Sincerely,

Anne Holton
Interim President

Patriots, how are you doing? Take the survey. Enter to win some Beats.

Dear Patriots,

I hope you are doing well.  I want to check in with you to learn about your Mason experience particularly since we made the decision to move to a distance learning format in response to the current pandemic.  Please fill out Mason Pulse Survey – it will take less than 5 minutes – so we can gauge your experience, continue to address areas that need improvement, provide you with any needed support, and plan for the future.

When you submit your completed survey, you will be entered into a random drawing. We will give away five pairs of Beats by Dr Dre Studio Noise Cancelling Headphones.  We will notify winners and mail Beats directly to you.

We really want to hear from you.  Knowing how you are doing is incredibly important to us, particularly at this moment in time.  Please complete by Wednesday, April 29.

Thanks,

Rose

​Rose B. Pascarell
Vice President for University Life

Updates to building access, procedures for reporting COVID-19 exposure, and events

Mason Patriots,

While campus is secured and virtual learning and telework are ongoing, we want to remind everyone of the steps we are taking to keep the Mason Nation safe. The university is developing plans to resume on-campus activities later this year. In order for us to understand when it is safe for us to return to campus, we need your help.

Report COVID Illnesses: If you have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or have had close contact with someone who has, please notify Mason using the university’s confidential reporting procedures to ensure we are aiding students, faculty, and staff as needed and to track the status of our community.We can slow community transmission by notifying contacts to quarantine.

  • Faculty and staff must contact Human Resources and Payroll via this online reporting form if you have been diagnosed with COVID-19, have been instructed by a medical professional to self-isolate or self-quarantine due to risks associated with close contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus. With the employee’s permission, supervisors are able to report this information on behalf of the employee.
  • Students who are diagnosed with COVID-19 or are issued self-isolation or quarantine instructions must contact Student Health Services. If you are a student living on campus or have had contact with a student living on campus, please call 703-993-2831. All other students please use the secure online portal at: https://gmu.medicatconnect.com
  • Contractors who test positive or are issued self-isolation or quarantine instructions should notify the Environmental Health and Safety Office, safety@gmu.edu, to determine appropriate protective measures. With the contracted employee’s permission, supervisors or Mason contract administrators can report this information on behalf of the contractor.

The reporting forms ask for information about locations visited on campus and others with whom contact was made so that those individuals can be notified if quarantine is recommended. An outline of the university’s process for notification, investigation, and recommended precautions is available online here. Supervisors should consult the university’s guidelines on when employees or students may return to work or campus.

Building Access:  We understand that some faculty and staff may need to return to campus to conduct critical research, work, or instruction. Because all university buildings have been secured, you must make arrangements ahead of time with the appropriate contact on this list if you do not currently have and need access to your workspace. Mason Police are getting numerous requests to provide on-demand building access, which takes them away from their primary responsibilities. Repeated on-demand requests may result in a charge to your department for emergency access.

  • Electronic Access: Card swipe access can be requested  online at https://masonid.gmu.edu/access/ or through the Card Access Security Office at 703-993-3127, CASO@gmu.edu.
  • Key Access: Key Control is available at keys@gmu.edu or 703-993-2823 to process requests for hard keys.

As part of securing the campus, spaces have been decontaminated by Facilities Management. This process leaves behind a non-toxic film or residue that will be removed during subsequent cleanings and before operations on campus resume. The film can be removed with a damp cloth or wipe. If you have additional concerns please contact Facilities Management at 703-993-2525 to arrange for additional cleaning.

University Events: As President Holton announced at last week’s town hall, that all university events will be cancelled or postponed until Aug. 8. If you have an event or activity that cannot be held virtually and you’d like to request an exception to this policy, please contact risk@gmu.edu. The Events Exception committee will conduct risk assessments on a case-by-case basis as requested to ensure consideration of specific event details are evaluated.

Thank you for all you are doing to keep our community safe.

Respectfully,

Lester L. Arnold
CHRO | Vice President for Human Resources and Payroll

Lisa Park, MD, MPH
Executive Director, Student Health Services

David Farris, PhD
Executive Director, Safety & Emergency Management

President Holton shares town hall video and outlook for next few months

Dear Patriots,

I want to thank everyone who participated in our first-ever virtual town hall. I am inspired by the level of engagement in our community. We had more than 2,100 viewers from all over the world, including Australia, Congo, Mauritania, Nicaragua, Netherlands, Niger, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine,  the United Kingdom and the United States. We received more than 375 questions from students, faculty, staff, family members, alumni and community members, and we continue to receive more. Our goal was to answer the most pressing questions. If you missed the town hall or would like to see it again, it is available here: https://vimeo.com/gmutv/masontownhall.

We plan to read all of your questions and find ways to respond, either through our frequently asked questions or in future communications. Please continue to check Mason’s Coronavirus web page for new information. Our two most important goals are to keep our campus community safe and educate students, and all our decisions are made with those objectives in mind. Here are a few key points I shared during the town hall.

Commencement

We are looking ahead at the calendar and making adjustments that allow us to continue with our mission and core goals. With a heavy heart, we have postponed commencement indefinitely.  At the town hall, we announced that we will hold a celebration for the Class of 2020 online on May 22 and will share more details about that soon. We know this doesn’t replace commencement, but we also want to recognize our graduating students’ hard work and accomplishments. If you are earning your degree this spring we hope you will participate in this event. Once we have responses to a pending student survey, and once we know how we can safely proceed, we will share our plan for a formal recognition for the Class of 2020 at a later date.

Summer 2020

As you know, the university made the decision to hold summer sessions in the virtual format. After consulting with public health officials and recognizing the need to plan for summer schedules, we feel it’s in the best interest of our community to extend our cancellation of other events as well through Aug. 8. We are creating an exceptions committee that can make decisions for events closer to the start of the semester with the most relevant information at that time. For parents, we encourage you to consider the camps that the university is offering this summer online.

Many people have asked how long we will continue to require employees to telework. We are following the recommendation of public health officials, as well as the guidelines from the state. We will continue to monitor both, adjust the telework policies as needed and provide more guidance and tools for employees and supervisors in the coming weeks.

Fall 2020 Opening

We know that many people have questions about the fall semester. We are doing our best to plan and are hopeful that we will be able to reopen the campus this fall, though it may not look like a typical fall semester. We are depending on the guidance of public health experts to inform our decision making and we hope to share more details on this evolving situation soon.  Our goal is to have more clarity by early June.

Budget and Tuition 2020-2021

Finally, we know many students are concerned about their finances in general and tuition costs for next year specifically. We are concerned too. The University is facing unprecedented financial challenges as a result of this crisis, as are our students, families and state government. The university expects to get more guidance on state funding when the General Assembly re-convenes next week; after that date we will adjust our projected budget scenarios based on the latest economic and public health data available. Our Board of Visitors received input from students and others at a public meeting on April 2 on this topic.

Rector Tom Davis will be holding an additional public forum at 10 a.m. on May 6, where students can ask questions and share further comments and concerns about tuition and fees. We will send details about how to join the forum to students through their Mason Live email as well as through university communication and social media channels.  The Board of Visitors will consider all this input as well as the latest and best advice we can garner when it meets to make decisions about the budget and tuition at its next meeting, now scheduled for May 20. I know the uncertainty is as frustrating for you as it is for us.

How to Help

You may have seen that Gov. Northam has issued a call for volunteers to join the Virginia Department of Health’s Medical Reserve Corps (MRC). Nurses, nurse practitioners and nursing students have been particularly encouraged to apply, but other volunteers are needed to fill roles in logistics, communication, coordination, technology and other support areas. I strongly encourage you to visit vamrc.org to learn more.

I also want to thank everyone who has contributed to the Student Emergency Assistance Fund. More than half of our faculty and staff have donated to the fund, providing help for our students with paying rent and utilities, or with technology assistance needed to continue their coursework. More than 1,600 applications have been received with requests totaling more than $3 million, and more than $1.1 million in funds have already been dispersed. Please consider making a donation to help our students.

We all want better clarity for the future but the safety of our university community and our students’ education are our two driving forces as we navigate this new reality. Thank you for your adaptability and resilience.

Sincerely,

Anne Holton
Interim President

President Holton to host virtual town hall

Dear Patriots,

It is an understatement to say that these are unprecedented times for everyone. Here at George Mason University, we are all adjusting to a new normal and for many of us, it may feel like continuous change.  We are proud of the way our community has responded to the coronavirus outbreak, but we also know that many of you may have questions about our new policies, university operations and the path forward.

In response, the university will hold a virtual town hall on Friday, April 17 from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Interim President Anne Holton will provide an update on the university’s response, and then she and her leadership team will be available to take questions from students and their families, faculty, staff, alumni and friends.

You can submit your questions in advance here or during the event and view the town hall on GMU TV. We encourage everyone to participate and look forward to gathering with you virtually on Friday.

Stay healthy and safe.

Sincerely,

Michael Sandler
Interim Vice President, Communications and Marketing

Spring 2020 – Alterations to Graduate Policies

Dear Graduate Students:

In our continued efforts to adapt to the ongoing changes and best support our graduate students, the Graduate Council has approved the following alterations to graduate policies for this spring 2020 semester:

1) For the Spring 2020 semester, the academic termination policy has been altered for all graduate students. All letter grades “C” or the equivalent alternative grades “XP” received in graduate courses will not count towards the number of unsatisfactory grades stated under AP.6.6.2 Academic Termination. Graduate students, who may receive letter grades “F” or the equivalent alternative grades “XN”, should consider the available withdrawal option as the effect of these non-passing grades on AP.6.6.2 Academic Termination will remain unaltered.

2) The GA hiring procedures have been altered for all graduate students who may be offered a graduate assistantship for Fall 2020. Students must be in good academic standing, maintain a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA, and not have any unsatisfactory grades at the end of Fall 2019 or any letter grades “F” or the equivalent alternative grades “XN” at the end of Spring 2020. No unsatisfactory grades earned during Spring 2020 should be considered for GA hiring decisions.

3) For the Spring 2020 semester, the coursework requirements policy for accelerated master’s students has been altered. Letter grades “A-C” or the equivalent alternative grades “XS” and “XP” received in graduate courses will count towards the number of credits that can be applied to the undergraduate degree and provide the student advanced standing in the related Mason master’s program. Letter grades “F” or the equivalent alternative grades “XN” will not count.

4)  For the Spring 2020 semester, the change from nondegree status policy has been altered. Letter grades “A-C” or the equivalent alternative grades “XS” and “XP” received in graduate courses will count towards the number of credits that can transferred to the degree program. Letter grades “F” or the equivalent alternative grades “XN” will not count.

For more important and related information, visit the Graduate Education – Spring 2020 COVID-19 Updates and the Office of the University Registrar – Spring 2020 Grading Options webpages.

Reminder: Coffee time with APGE tomorrow (Friday) at 10am. All information can be found on your Blackboard under the Graduate Education Resources organization.

We thank all of you for your patience and efforts with adapting to the ongoing changes.

Sincerely,

Dr. Bray.

Laurence Bray, PhD
Associate Provost for Graduate Education
George Mason University
703-993-2218