Fall Issue I, September 2022

Advising Updates

Welcome to the first issue of the fall semester and 2022-23 academic year! We look forward to bringing you updates and opportunities, as well as information to share with your students, all semester. 
We will continue to post each newsletter to our website but also to our newly created CHSS Undergrad Team folder. In case you have not already, please pin the folder in your OneDrive and be sure to update your notifications for our MS Teams channel so that you receive our posts and can contact us, as well! Email us if you are unsure how to access either the folder or the Teams chat – we are happy to help. 
  • Academic Standing workshop: the recording and materials from our session on September 20 are available for you in OneDrive. Please contact us with any questions related to the new policy. 
  • SAM form reminders ongoing: students who are required to submit the SAM form this semester received their second reminder this week. You can find your lists in OneDrive, which we will update as forms are received. Holds will be placed for forms not received by October 24. 
Advisor Training Opportunities:
  • Advisor Onboarding program seeks instructors for Spring 
    View workshop topics here and email Sylvia Lee, Academic Advising Coordinator in the Office of Academic Advising, with questions:
  • Developing Advisor Practice (DAP) program needs YOU!
    Learn more about the various ways to become involved in DAP, as a committee member or instructor, as well as the benefits, during an interest session on Wednesday, October 5, 12:00-1:00pm, in JC Meeting Room C. Join us!

Contact Us

We welcome your feedback! Email us ( with your comments and suggestions.

Professional Development  

Advising 201: Developing your Communication Plan
Tues, October 18 @ 8pm

View more and register for this virtual session here.
Advising 203: Advising Approaches for Students with Mental Health Concerns
Thurs, October 27 @ 2pm
View more and register for this in-person session here
Career Influencers Network
Upcoming training:
Mon, October 17 @ 9:30am (focus on grad students)
Fri, November 4 @ 9:00am

Spotlight on Student Success 

What Our Students are Saying this Fall 
A new semester has started and once again, students, faculty, and staff are transitioning into a new post-COVID phase. Even though our class schedules and work routines are slowly getting back to “normal,” we cannot ignore the long-term impacts that the pandemic has had in our student success work. The fact is that some of our students are not yet mentally, emotionally, and physically prepared for the challenges that a new semester brings. 
Data gathered at the beginning of the fall semester from our current PASS population, revealed that students are making great efforts to be resilient and that they are adapting to change. 
Some of the motivators mentioned: 
  • Getting financial aid back 
  • Getting closer to graduation 
  • Finding internships and other opportunities 
Common pressures inside and outside of the classroom: 
  • Lack of social connections with classmates 
  • Struggles with self-organization (time pressures and learning material)
  • For our adult learners: parenting and/or work demands 
  • Not knowing where to begin to seek help. One student wrote: “Since I was doing just fine, I was not prepared ‘to fail’… I felt bad and did not know what to do. I thought that no one could help since it was my fault.” 
  • Not being able to afford ongoing mental health services 
Not surprisingly, due to the structural inequities that exist in our society, these issues are particularly impacting our underserved population. Our collaborative efforts and interventions, therefore, are critical. Advising is one of the most powerful ways we can reach vulnerable students to get through, to welcome challenges, and succeed. What are your students communicating, both verbally and nonverbally during advising meetings? How are students doing outside the classroom?  
If early in the semester we can provide our students with useful information on how to balance coursework with family and/or work commitments and show them how/where to access student resources, they will not only feel supported but also empowered, and that will stay with them beyond the semester.

Career Bulletin

What's new from Career Services? Please share the following with your students:
CHSS Grad School Series
The Grad School Series returns for Fall 2022, starting on Thursday, October 6, with the Understanding the BAM session. Sessions take place weekly on Thursdays at 3:00pm. The full schedule is below. Please promote and encourage your students to attend! Students do not need to attend all events in the series. 

Understanding the BAM (Bachelors to Accelerated Masters)
: Thurs, October 6 @ 3pm
Considering Grad School (The Why, How, and If): Thurs, October 13 @ 3pm
Telling Your Story (Personal Statements + Letters of Recommendation): Thurs, October 20 @ 3pm
Admissions Confidential - Becoming a Well-Rounded Applicant: Thurs, October 27 @ 3pm

DNA (Davids N' Amanda) Corner - Notes from Academic Affairs 

Substitution/Waiver Request Forms
Degree Compliance has let us know that, moving forward, it will accept substitutions and waivers only on the most up-to-date version of the form, which includes the graduation-term check box.  Please be sure to use the form currently available on the Registrar’s office’s forms page.
NEW Suspension Override Form
We have a new form for suspension overrides. Please have students fill out and submit this form; an advisor signature is required prior to submitting to Undergraduate Academic Affairs. The new form can be found here:
Selective Withdrawals 
As you know, the selective withdrawal period began Wednesday, September 28th. Any CHSS student with a non-academic situation requesting a withdrawal should be referred to our office. If the situation is academic in nature, then they should use a selective withdrawal.  
Late Adds
Please remember that any late add requests that come to our office should include the student's signature, or an email that they accept any and all financial obligations that come with the late add. They should also include an explanation as to why the course was not added during the normal add period.
Leave of Absence 
Leave of absence requests no longer need to be reviewed by our office, even for extensions. After the advisor has signed, these forms can be sent directly to MSSC. 
Leaving Mason
While it is too late to drop at this point, students now have the option to inactivate their status and leave Mason through the Leaving Mason form. This form can be found either on the Registrar's website, or on the Before Leaving Mason page

Meet a CHSS Advisor

Olivia Inturias, Criminology, Law and Society
My name is Olivia Inturias, and I am an undergraduate academic advisor in the Department of Criminology, Law and Society. I am an alumna of George Mason University, where I earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology in 2007, and a Master of Arts degree in Higher Education Administration in 2013. I have also taught CHSS 300, a transition course for transfer students – one of my favorite student populations to work with! 
Prior to joining the CLS unit, I had worked as admissions counselor at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Washington, D.C., and as Office Assistant in the Office for International Students at Northern Virginia Community College. 
In my free time, I enjoy watching movies, listening to music, traveling, and spending time with family and friends. I often travel to Miami, Florida, to visit my family: dad, mom, brother, and kitties! I recently visited Europe for the first time, it was amazing, I went to Holland, France, Germany, and Belgium. I can’t wait for my next adventure!

Academic Opportunities

Ongoing Speaker Series: Russia's War on Ukraine in Historical Perspective
Help your students stay engaged and informed by encouraging attendance in some or all the online speaker series about Russia’s War on Ukraine hosted by the Russian and Eurasian Studies program.
Each Monday from 3:00-4:15 throughout the fall semester, a different session will be discussing the War in Ukraine from different perspectives. For a list of topics and to register:
Honors College Information Sessions
From our colleagues in the Honors College:
The Honors College is once again extending an invitation to current Mason students who are exceptionally motivated and enthusiastic about learning. This is an especially wonderful opportunity for those who are looking for an environment that will challenge and stretch their abilities as well as provide a sense of community within the larger Mason campus. Currently enrolled students can apply to join the Honors College in their second or third year.  
Interested students are encouraged to attend an information session in October (see dates here) and can find detailed information, including the application, on this webpage. Applications will open on Friday, October 14. Students may contact Tahmina Rahman with questions:
General eligibility criteria to apply for the Honors College are as follows:
  • Minimum of 24 credit hours completed at Mason (by the end of the semester they are applying)
  • Minimum 3.5 cumulative GPA 

News from Navigate

Navigate ( will be moving to a Ticketing System like ITS to better train staff and track the requests that are coming in. There is no date set for when this will go into effect, most likely to be a soft launch at the end of this semester or early Spring semester. Please be patient as they begin implementing this update. 
Patriot Success Survey results will be reported in Note History beginning in October. Please consider reviewing a student’s history prior to or while meeting with them should any concerns be reported. The first line of defense will be Success Coaches doing outreach to students that rank “Very Poor” or “Poor” in areas such as: Financial, Belonging, Safety, Shelter, Living Situation, Intent to return, Food, or Overall experience. 
Additional updates:
  • More characters can be used in Locations. This means that you can have longer instructions in the location. This may be helpful for units with more than one advisor; you can include more detailed instructions for scheduling in this space. To edit: Settings (bottom left, gear icon) > Select your Location > Add details in Description box. Links can also be included. 
  • All data is pulled from Banner so major changes will not show correctly until they are accurate in Banner.
  • Changes to data feed: Senior Plus was not in Navigate reports but are now. When you search for seniors, download the list to Excel then sort by Senior Plus.