Frequently Asked Questions
Are there any active LGBTQ student groups or organizations at Mason?
YES. Mason currently has five LGBTQ student organizations:
Pride Alliance – LGBTQ and Straight Ally Student Alliance (all students welcome!!!)
Faculty Advisor: Ric Chollar
This group meets on alternating Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 7:30pm. Locations vary, check out the calendar of events for location
Twitter: @GMUPride http://twitter.com/
GALLA – LGBTQ Association at Mason’s Law School
GradPride – LGBTQ and Straight Ally Graduate Student Group
TQ Mason – Transgender, Queer, Androgynouse, Gender Non-Conforming Student Organization
Does Mason have a campus office for LGBTQ Resources and Student Services?
YES. The Office of LGBTQ Resources is located in Student Union Building (SUB) I, Room 2200, and the phone number is 703-993-2702.
Students of all genders and sexual orientations are welcome in this safe, supportive, confidential space, which is shared between the LGBTQ Resources staff and LGBTQ student groups. The Office of LGBTQ Resources provides advocacy, guidance and mentorship, community building, educational programming, resources, and coordination of the Safe Zone Program. Services are available on site, as well as through phone and email communication.
Are LGBTQ-sensitive counseling services available?
YES. Mason’s Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) staff is committed to providing services to all students who identify as LGBTQ or have concerns about sexual orientation or gender identity. The counselors actively keep themselves educated in LGBTQ-related topics. Additionally, CAPS has a liaison to the LGBTQ community, Allie Minieri. Services are free and confidential. Contact CAPS at 703-993-2380 or visit in Student Union Building I, Room 3129.
Are there other campus offices that are supportive of LGBTQ/ally students and issues?
YES. Many Mason offices actively address LGBTQ issues, including (but not limited to):
- University of Life Dean’s offices
- Office of Housing & Residence Life
- Wellness, Alcohol, and Violence Education (WAVES)
- The Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Multicultural Education (ODIME)
- Office of Equity and Diversity Services
- Women and Gender Studies
- George Mason University Police
What activities are sponsored on campus for LGBTQ/ally students?
There are many activities on campus for LGBTQ/ally students. Below is a list of various events:
- October: National Coming Out Week – a variety of speakers and events
- April: Pride Week – movies, speakers, performances, and discussion groups
- Mid Spring – Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Multicultural Education Vision Awards Ceremony
Do LGBTQ-related bias incidents occur on campus?
Unfortunately, YES, as with most institutions across the country. The LGBTQ-related incidents most often heard about include: offensive graffiti; destruction of LGBTQ publicity materials; and insensitive or disrespectful questions and comments to transgender/nontraditionally-gendered students in bathrooms.
How does the University respond to such incidents?
Mason takes all incidents of bias and harassment – including anti-LGBTQ – seriously. Concerns or complaints can be reported to ODIME or Campus Police: Officer Michael Guston and ODIME oversee Mason’s Bias Incident Reporting process and document all reported bias incidents related to gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation (as well as categories such as age, race, ethnicity, religion, language, accent, or ability status). Depending on the type of incident and whether the perpetrator is known or not, there are a variety of ways Mason may respond, including enforcing Mason’s Judicial System for Student Conduct and/or Nondiscrimination, Sexual Assault, Sexual Harassment, and Stalking policies.
Are sexual orientation and gender identity included in the non-discrimination policy?
YES. Currently Mason includes sexual orientation and gender identity in its non-discrimination policy. Also, Alexandria City, Falls Church City, Arlington County, and Fairfax County prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Gender identity and expression are currently not included in the non-discrimination policy and, at the state level, the Commonwealth of Virginia offers no inclusion of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression in its anti-discrimination laws.
Can I find supportive faculty and staff easily?
YES. Mason has an active Safe Zone Program on campus, which helps LGBTQ students, staff, and faculty identify as allies, safe listeners, advocates, and/or resources. Many supportive staff and faculty publicly display rainbow stickers and/or buttons that say, “Ally,” or “Safe Zone.” Additionally, we have a Out and Ally list that lists faculty, staff, and students who identify as allies and those who choose to publicly identify as OUT LGBTQ people.
How can I get involved in the Safe Zone Program?
Register for a Safe Zone training! The training is recommended for all faculty, staff, and students who interact with others in an advisory, teaching, service, or leadership capacity. A list of current Safe Zone training dates can be found here.