College of Humanities and Social Sciences
College of Humanities and Social Sciences

# 38 January 28, 2014

A little Olympic Trivia

1. When and where were the first Winter Olympic games held?
2. Which American city has hosted the Winter Olympics twice?
3. Who is the most decorated American Winter Olympian?

Now for the serious stuff

The CHSS Finance and HR Winter Info Session will be held on Tuesday, February 11 at 10:30 am in Mason Hall D3. Please look for an e-mail with specifics this week and make plans to attend.


Remember that it is the University's policy that all orgs and funds must be reconciled at least every two months. For your sponsored programs it is highly recommended that this be done monthly.

When doing reconciliations it is important to verify not only those expenses that were charged to the org/fund, but also those that were expected to be charged but were not. This includes both labor and DE. If an error is found or a charge is missing, the mistake should be noted on the reconciliation as well as the steps taken to correct it. Fiscal Services offers monthly reconciliation training if you would like a refresher, or you can contact Shae with questions.

Forecasted Modifiers Report in BTS

A new report has been added to the BTS Reports screen called Forecasted Modifiers. This report shows when faculty effort is budgeted on sponsored programs but hasn't yet been processed on a Funding Change Form or EPAF. When grants are received, the Dean's Office enters "modifiers" or notes which remind us how much effort is budgeted per person on a grant, and over what time frame so that we can help track when faculty/staff should be charging to these projects. The Start and End Date columns reflect the time period it's anticipated the person will work on the grant in a given fiscal year. The Modifier Impact column is an estimate of the dollar amount that will be charged based on the expected effort during that time frame. Finally, the Comments column gives more detail including the percentage to charge and grant number. If there isn't a specific org/fund mentioned in the Comments it means that the person is required to charge effort somewhere other than the department org, but that the College hasn't yet been given details of where that will be.

Spring FCFs

The Spring 2014 semester is officially underway. Funding change forms for faculty taking course buyouts this spring should already be submitted. All FCFs can and should be submitted as early as possible.

Signatures on University Documents         

If PIs or Department Chairs/Directors aren't physically available to sign a FCF, email approval is acceptable. Attach and send the email with the FCF, and in the appropriate signature line write "See attached email". Note that the email must include the details of the FCF so that the approval can be matched with that specific distribution in the future should backup documentation be necessary. A one-line email stating "I approve" with no information about the person, effective dates, or fund/org distribution will not suffice. Refer to the December Finance Reports and Signature Reminder email from Beth Brock for further detail as this signature policy applies to all orgs/funds.

Graduate Funding Allocations 2014-2015

The Graduate Funding Allocation memos for 2014-2015 will be distributed to the department in February. Tuition waivers will be stated in FY14 dollars and will later be adjusted up by the blended Mason increase rate once FY15 tuition rates are determined. If you have any questions, please contact Irene Mills.

FY15 Teaching Loads
We will be opening BTS for departments to enter the FY15 Teaching Load information in the Budget Tracking System (BTS) mid-February. The deadline for departments to complete is March 3. This information is necessary to set up the part-time budget for FY15 as well as to help track grant buyouts, faculty leaves, and teaching for other departments/colleges. If you have changes to faculty with administrative roles and associated course reductions/stipends in FY15, please contact Irene to update in BTS.

Federal Work Study
Please contact Nicole Narkiewicz if you plan to request additional Federal Work Study budget this year. CHSS is juggling the funds and we would like to spend all available funds for work study by year end.

Approvals for graduate students (EZ-EPAFs):

Please check to see if your graduate student already holds a position at George Mason prior to the submission of an EZ-EPAF. This step will reduce any delay in the EPAF approval process. If a graduate student already holds an assistantship or student-wage position, please remember that graduate students are limited to one 20-hour per week GA/GTA/GL assignment (according to the Graduate Student Hiring and Support Guidelines provided by the Office of the Provost). Exceptions to the 20-hour per week limit can be granted for an additional 9 hours per week. Approval must be attained by both Jamie Cooper and the department chair of the student's home academic unit. Please e-mail the approval to Nicole Narkiewicz at

EZ-EPAF news

There are some new features to the EZ-EPAF application that should make the process even easier!

There is a new option for terminating a position from the Completed tab in EZ-EPAF.

There are also new Export features as well. An Excel formatted spreadsheet of your query in either the “My EZ-EPAF “tab or the“Completed” tab is available for download.

Instructions for both new features will be sent out via e-mail.

Trivia Answers:
1. The Winter Olympics were first held in 1924 in Chamonix, France. The modern Summer Olympics began in Athens in 1896.
2. Lake Placid, in 1932 and 1980.
The U.S. also hosted the Winter Games in 1960 in Squaw Valley and in 2002 in Salt Lake City.
3. Short track speed skater Apolo Ohno won the most medals for the U.S. A. at the Winter Games with a total of eight: two gold, two silver, and four bronze. Bonnie Blair is the most decorated female American Winter Olympian.

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