Graduate Reimagine Initiative

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Laurence Bray

Associate Provost for Graduate Education,

Office of the Provost 

Overview

In February 2021, Mason celebrated its fifth year as a research-intensive (R1) university. As we reflect on where we started and all that has been accomplished since then, there is great pride in our academic and research achievements. These accomplishments would have not been possible without the contribution of our outstanding faculty and also our graduate students. With over 10,800 students enrolled in our graduate programs, and many more students having completed their master’s or doctoral degrees, Mason has become a significant producer of advanced degrees and contributor to a specialized workforce in the Commonwealth of Virginia and beyond.

Despite our ongoing successes, Mason has been impacted by a rapid and significant growth, which has led to significant challenges that could compromise the continued success of our initiatives that advance learning, support research and also promote scholarly study and professional development opportunities. Such challenges ultimately can affect graduate students’ achievement of their personal and career goals. In recognition of these challenges, we would like to undertake an initiative that will provide an opportunity to reimagine graduate education that can help us to recruit and retain high-caliber students, provide them with experiences of academic and research excellence, and maximize their chance of success at Mason and in their future career. Currently, Mason has over 134 graduate degree programs with 93 Master’s degrees and 41 Doctoral degrees, plus 95 Graduate Certificates programs across many disciplines. This broad portfolio of academic graduate programs produces many opportunities for our students while also creating significant challenges that inhibits graduate education effectiveness and efficiency, cross-disciplinary and experiential learning, and support for career and professional development.

We are pleased to announce the following two phase process:

  • Phase I: The exploration and development phase led by the Graduate Education Reimagine Task Force throughout 2021, which resulted in a comprehensive set of recommendations.
  • Phase II: The implementation planning phase led by Laurence Bray, Associate Provost for Graduate Education and four advisory groups, which will result in the launch of a Graduate Division in Fall 2022.

Timeline

Month
Actions
June 2022
  • Half-day retreat with advisory groups and leadership team
  • Finalize Implementation Plan
May 2022
  • BOV meeting
April 2022
  • Half-day retreat with advisory groups and leadership team
  • First draft of Implementation Plan
March 2022
  • Kickoff meeting with advisory groups and leadership teams
February 2022
  • Finalize advisory groups
  • Schedule bi-weekly advisory group meetings and send out invitations