Just because Mason is now classified as a residential university doesn’t mean we can forget about the biggest portion of our student-body: off-campus scholars.
Currently, Mason is in the middle of what is being billed as Off-Campus Appreciation Week. The week features a slew of workshops and activities to help students with some of the basic but vitally important aspects of living beyond the friendly confines of campus, such as leasing a home, finding a roommate, cooking, changing your car’s oil, and replacing a tire (not as easy as one might think, especially doing so along I-66 when cars are whizzing by doing 70).
The week concludes with a dance and choir competition this Friday night.
Appreciation Week is only part of what has been a larger effort to reach out to off-campus students. Last semester, a study lounge for commuter students was established at the Johnson Center to rave reviews. Plans to do it again are in the works.
Recently, Mason’s Office of Community Relations published a deck of playing cards for off-campus students printed with helpful tips and suggestions on being a good neighbor. Examples include how to properly store your trash cans, a suggestion to please pick up after your pets, and another not to overload wall outlets.
That same office also created a refrigerator magnet shaped like a plastic cup emblazoned with instructions on how to party responsibly while being respectful of your neighbors.
Each letter in the theme of the cup, “Party Smart,” starts off another tip. For instance, “P” is for park legally without blocking driveways. The “S” urges party-throwers to have a “sober monitor” on site to control things, such as the volume of the music. Meanwhile, the second “T” reminds off-campus residents of a very basic neighborly tenant: please throw away all party-related trash, including debris that might have ended up on your neighbor’s lawn.
Commonsense information? Of course. But sometimes we could all use a little reminding of the basics.