International Film Festival to Stream “Sorry We Missed You”

actors in the film Sorry We Missed You

“Sorry We Missed You,” by acclaimed director Ken Loach, is a stunning drama about work in the lower reaches of the gig economy and its effects on family ties.  Focused on a delivery driver, a home care nurse and their two children, it raises questions made ever more urgent by the COVID-19 crisis about essential workers and the challenges they face.

“Sorry We Missed You” is Available on YouTube Now…

From the Original Article at Source: International Film Festival to Stream “Sorry We Missed You”

George Mason statue ready to move to new home

The iconic statue of George Mason on George Mason University’s Fairfax Campus is scheduled to be moved Monday, June 15, to its new (temporary) home on Holton Plaza.

The move is necessary to make room for the reconstruction of the area of Wilkins Plaza adjacent to Robinson B, which itself will be demolished after the opening of Horizon Hall, expected for the spring 2021 semester.

The Mason statue will return to its usual place on Wilkins Plaza in late summer 2021.

The Mason clock, a gift from the Class of 1999 that was moved into storage in December 2018 to facilitate the expansion of Wilkins Plaza, is expected to make its reappearance in July, slightly north and east of its former location near David King Hall.

“Things are moving along pretty well although productivity has been reduced over the past several months due to COVID,” Cathy Pinskey, program director at Mason Facilities, said of the Core Campus Project, which is transforming the center of the Fairfax Campus.

Not forgotten – Raleigh Marshall (’05) discovers his great-great-great-grandfather, Paul Jennings

By Jazmine Otey (’20)

Raleigh Marshall (’05) recalls being surrounded by history since elementary school. Coach lamps that once belonged to Founding Father James Madison were mounted on the wall in Marshall’s basement.

There were also nearly a thousand black-and-white photos scattered about, many of which were taken by Addison N. Scurlock, a prominent photographer in Washington, D.C.’s African American community. Within the collection was a photo of Marshall’s great-grandmother, Pauline Jennings Marshall.

But it wasn’t until 2008 that Marshall discovered the significance of the family heirlooms within his ancestral home. Through his great-grandmother, he is the great-great-great-grandson of Paul Jennings, an African American enslaved attendant to James Madison and his family.

Elizabeth Dowling Taylor, a researcher, author and former director of education at Montpelier, Madison’s estate, invited Marshall to Montpelier to participate in a reading of the preamble of the U.S. Constitution, along with collateral Madison descendant Madison Iler Wing.

Madison banner 2018

Read More – Source: Not forgotten

Board Votes to Rename School of Business

Shenandoah University will remove the name of Harry F. Byrd, Jr. from our School of Business.

The decision, effective immediately, came on Wednesday, June 10, after a unanimous vote from the university’s 38-member Board of Trustees (present for the vote) to remove the name from our business school and board room in recognition of the school’s ongoing commitment to be a welcoming and inclusive institution for all.

At Shenandoah, we encourage the best, the brightest, the inspired, to come learn with us, in the spirit of equitable access for every one of our students. This decision today about the business school is reflective of our commitment to continuing efforts toward racial justice and equality for all.”

Board of Trustees Chairman Rob Frogale

This important decision is one of several steps we have endeavored to and will continue to take against racism and to establish a culture that is unequivocal in its commitment to Black lives and antiracism. The university is committed to deeply and continuously reflecting on our strategic plan and mission to foster a campus culture of “compassion, responsibility, advocacy, and justice, which graduates are inspired to replicate in communities beyond Shenandoah.”

The School of Business will join the School of Health Professions, the College of Arts & Sciences, and the Shenandoah Conservatory by not carrying an individual’s name.

In 1984, the Board of Trustees of Shenandoah College and Conservatory voted to honor Sen. Harry F. Byrd, Jr., a former state and U.S. senator, by naming the Shenandoah School of Business Administration after him. Byrd, a Virginia native and resident of Winchester, went on to become a distinguished lecturer at Shenandoah, where he spoke about his experience in government and being the first person in history to be elected to the Senate twice as an Independent. Byrd died in 2013.

While the Senator shared with many individuals later in life that he had changed his mind with regard to educational access, Byrd’s belief in the segregation of schools in the 1950s and his actions as a Virginia state senator on behalf of the Massive Resistance effort in Virginia run counter to our strategic plan and its mission of establishing a campus culture that fully embraces inclusion and diversity.

The board and I understand that we cannot be an institution that serves all students equitably when our business school still holds the name of an individual who denied full integration of schools. Although we cannot change history, we have the power to build a better future in which everyone is treated with respect and receives the same opportunities, regardless of race or ethnicity. With life comes experiences, relationships and education that illuminate historical injustices and help us better understand the injustices in our world today. That is what has happened here at Shenandoah. It is during this time in our national history, in which Black individuals continue to experience daily and systemic acts of racism, that we must stand up and act swiftly in order to move forward to a more fair and equitable future.”

President Tracy Fitzsimmons, Ph.D.

To that end, we’ve denounced racial injustice and are enacting several measures, including the establishment of an anonymous system to report discrimination, a review of our curricula to ensure that academic programs reflect and support the diversity of history and society, additional diversity and inclusion training for all members of the university community, and the establishment of a diversity scholarship to support recruitment and retention of students of color in underrepresented programs. Along with these actions, the university is committed to maintaining a posture of listening and learning from our Black students, alumni, faculty, and staff.

A virtual forum was held earlier Wednesday titled “Past, Present & Future: An Open Forum on the Naming of the Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business.” Hundreds of Shenandoah students, staff and faculty members, alumni, and members of our Shenandoah community joined online to express their thoughts and concerns about the name of the university’s business school.

Source: Board Votes to Rename School of Business

Tourism class organizes virtual conference on the impact of technology on hospitality

June 9, 2020   /   by Anna Stolley Persky

In March, when Shawn Lee’s classes went online amid the coronavirus pandemic, he realized he’d have to make some changes to keep his class connected with the industry leaders. Lee, who teaches a class on hospitality, tourism and event management information systems at George Mason University usually brings speakers into his classroom. But with classes in the virtual realm, that was no longer possible.

Lee decided to make the most of the new circumstances and assigned his 30 students a project in which they organized a virtual web conference about the impact of technology and coronavirus on hospitality. The event, held May 4, featured eight tourism and hospitality experts who shared their insights about e-tourism and gave advice to students about the skill sets they’d need for the new economy. The class also invited professors and students from other schools, such as Virginia Tech and George Washington University, to attend. About 58 individuals attended the conference, Lee said.

“The event turned into a great way for us to showcase Mason’s innovation,” said Lee, an associate professor in the College of Education and Human Development. “People from other schools could see that when there are hurdles, Mason students go over them to get to their learning experiences.”

In general, Lee said, he likes to include hands-on projects in his classes to encourage experiential learning. For the virtual web conference project, he divided his students into smaller groups to research potential speakers, send them formal invitations, coordinate their attendance and ensure the speakers had what they needed to make their presentations. Some industry experts who spoke waived their normal fees given the circumstances and in support of this student-led conference.

“The students learned that not only could they organize a virtual conference, which is widely considered as new norm of many business meetings, they also found that if they reach out to professionals, they might be surprised about how many people are willing to participate,” Lee said.

Mason senior Uomna Shoura, a tourism and events management major, said she enjoyed working on the project.

“It basically reemphasized the idea that there’s always something new happening in the industry, and people find ways to adapt to it,” she said.

Source: Tourism class organizes virtual conference on the impact of technology on hospitality

Fall for the Book festival goes virtual this year

The Fall for the Book festival is making some radical changes this year. As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the festival going virtual. Organizers are also expanding the 22-year-old festival from four days to three months, running from September to November and offering “a whole season of great literary events right at your fingertips,” said Kate Lewis, the festival’s marketing director.

This year’s headliners are award-winning authors Rainbow Rowell and Tommy Orange. Other authors appearing throughout the fall are Porochista Khakpour, Emily Wilson, David Marwell, and George Mason University alumnus and English professor Art Taylor, among others.

The festival will be hosting at noon on Fridays throughout the fall semester, as well as special events.

“With fewer barriers to access, we’re elevating our status to ‘on demand,’” said Lewis. “Now you can settle in with your kids to watch a live, interactive event with their favorite illustrator, or get a front-row seat to a talk with a writer who lives half a world away, no plane ticket required. By bringing the festival online, we hope to further unite the Mason campus with the local community, while making meaningful connections with people wherever they live.”

Like many nonprofits, the festival is feeling the effects of the lockdown. As a result, they are hosting their first online Trivia Night fundraiser at 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 16. Details can be found at

Fall for the Book is Northern Virginia’s oldest and largest festival of literature and the arts. All events are free and open to the public, thanks to the generous support of sponsors including Mason, the Fairfax County Public Library, the Fairfax Library Foundation, and the City of Fairfax.

Source: Fall for the Book festival goes virtual this year

CMU Spinoff Uses AI to Address COVID-19

A photo of people in line at an airport

Cameras monitor stores, hotels, hospitals, airport terminals, public parks and parking lots. When computer vision technology company Zensors spun out of Carnegie Mellon University’s Human-Computer Interaction Institute (HCII) two years ago, the founding members created an artificial intelligence (AI) capable of analyzing images and video from those cameras and turning it into actionable data. Now they’re offering up that AI to organizations worldwide to be used in response to COVID-19.

In March, Zensors announced it would open its platform, at no cost through June 1, to stores, governments, hospitals, airports and essential businesses to help deal with the coronavirus.

“We can start giving actionable data today using our clients’ existing cameras,” said Anuraag Jain, a School of Computer Science and HCII alumnus and creator of the Zensors technology. “It’s that straightforward to use. Our product was designed to automate space analytics such as occupancy, crowd flow, wait times and related staffing needs, which can aid the implementation of new social distancing requirements and protect public health.”

Source: CMU Spinoff Uses AI to Address COVID-19