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Atmospheric science

Dean's Blog: Focusing on our ABCs

A message from Dean Fernando Miralles-Wilhelm

Dean Fernando Miralles-Wilhelm

Welcome to the Fall 2023 semester and the new academic year at Mason Science! This is one of my favorite parts of the year, giving us all the opportunity of a new beginning and the promise of great things to come, including new challenges and experiences.

As we come together to start this academic year, I’d like us to consider focusing on the basics, our ABCs if you will.

A – Access. Access to opportunity, to experiences, to information, to ideas.

B – Belonging. Build a thriving community, a place where people want to work, learn, and grow.

C – Community Engagement. Fully engage. Enhance what we do, and how we do it, bringing forward new or previously proven ideas and approaches, to expand research impact, evolve and optimize our learning and working environments, and build and strengthen partnerships.

As we envision our future, Mason Science is embarking on a journey to increase sustainability, improve student, staff, and faculty success, and enhance the impact of our research. Critical to our success is a defined strategy created with insights gathered from faculty, staff, students, and partners, to establish our new, comprehensive, and community-driven five-year Strategic Plan.

This plan articulates our vision for the future, a mission that describes how we will achieve success, values to guide our behaviors, and sets an overall direction for the College’s future academic, research, ABCE, and outreach. This strategy will give Mason Science the ability to fulfill our aspirations to:

  • Empower students to thrive and prepare for their future successes.
  • Enhance the faculty and staff experience.
  • Elevate the impact of our research enterprise.
  • Enable sustainable innovation and growth.
  • Cultivate a culture of engagement, belonging, and satisfaction.

Our internal commitment to Access and enhanced flow of information starts with engagement in faculty, staff, and department meetings and focus groups. In addition, our weekly newsletter and new Sharepoint-based intranet (which launches in the coming month), will transparently aggregate important news, data, recognition, and events.

Please register for and encourage all students, staff, and faculty to attend ScienceConnect (Sept 12 and 14) as we come together to build community and a sense of Belonging.

I encourage our community to engage and collaborate. Learn about what is happening across the College and at Mason and share your thoughtful ideas in faculty and staff meetings. Ask yourself ‘Who can you partner with to achieve our shared aspirations?” Mark your calendars to attend our State of the College address on October 18. Learn about our progress and meet someone new to you.

It is a challenging time in higher education across the country, yet we continue to move forward by sustaining growth in both enrollment and research funding. With a focus on our basic ABCs, each one of us has an important role to play in this effort.

I am proud, thrilled, and committed to embark with you on this new chapter for Mason Science as we seek to realize the goals we have set forth for ourselves over the next few years. Tell us what you think. Seek assistance when the load is heavy. And strive to be well.


Fernando Miralles-Wilhelm
Dean, College of Science