Celebrating Mason in Arlington with trivia, a concert, and a groundbreaking

Founders Plaza at the Arlington Campus pictured at dusk
Arlington Campus, George Mason University. Photo by Ron Aira/Creative Services

The Arlington Campus will celebrate George Mason University's 50th anniversary with a series of events from April 4–8 and a new name. Festivities include a trivia competition, the debut of a new gallery exhibit, the groundbreaking ceremony for the new digital innovation development, and a retro-themed concert on the plaza.

Mason’s 50th anniversary arrives as the Arlington Campus, now called Mason Square, turns a new page in its own unique story. Fuse at Mason Square will add 350,000 square feet of space to the campus. Plans are also underway to bring vibrant new programming to the plaza, making it an lively gathering place for the campus and nearby community.

“The Arlington Campus is here because visionaries like Til Hazel and George Johnson saw the potential for Mason’s growth in this location,” said Una Murphy, director of administration and operations for the Arlington Campus. “We are building upon the programs developed over the past half-century and pushing ourselves further with the development of Mason Square and the surrounding innovation district.”

The “So You Think You Know Mason?” trivia contest on April 4 kicks off the week with a spirited round of questions based on the history of Mason and Arlington County. Participants may sign up as teams or individuals, with prizes awarded to the winners and a complimentary lunch for all. Here’s a sample question:

“The Mason law school in Arlington changed its name in 2016 to the Antonin Scalia Law School. Before that, it was the George Mason University School of Law. What was it called before it was acquired by Mason?”

Think you know the answer? Attend the event and find out.

Next on the itinerary is “Profiles in Arlington,” a new exhibit in Founders Gallery. The campus will celebrate its honorees with a reception on April 5.

“The exhibit showcases the incredible work currently being done by Arlington faculty, students, and staff, as well as our alumni in the field,” said Sara Hawes, Arlington Campus administrative officer. "This is a living project and will showcase new honorees annually.” 

Wednesday’s groundbreaking highlights the unique combination of education, research, business incubation and urban amenities at Mason Square, a new model to serve the digital economy.

The celebrations will cap off on Friday, April 8, with a Decades Rewind Concert on the plaza. This family-friendly evening will include Arlington food and beverage vendors, outdoor yard games, and a live band.

The 50th anniversary events mark the start of a new era for the campus as a centerpiece of the Ballston-Rosslyn corridor.

“I am most excited about the opportunities to bring members of the community onto the campus in a more intentional way, through the unique design of the [new] building, the innovative partnerships evolving with industry and our academic units, and the robust programming on the plaza—the front door of our campus," said Murphy.