Susan Turriziani Is February Employee of the Month

Posted: February 2, 2009 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Ryann Doyle

“The students that come to our office look for advice, clarification of procedures and direction,” says Susan Turriziani, the graduate coordinator for Graduate and Academic Affairs in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences and Mason’s February Employee of the Month.

Turriziani started working part time in the Undergraduate Academic Affairs office in 2004 before being moved to full-time work for Graduate Academic Affairs in 2005. Her primary responsibility is assisting graduate students in master’s and doctoral degree programs.

“I review student requests and advise faculty, staff and students on policies and procedures,” says Turriziani.

According to her colleagues, Turriziani’s wonderful attitude and exceptional work ethic show how much pride she invests in her work.

Susan Turriziani
Susan Turriziani with her Employee of the Month Award.
Creative Services photo

“It has been a pleasure to watch her over the years as she has grown into an ever more valuable member of the dean’s office. She has taken on increasing responsibility in graduate affairs as the role of her supervisor has expanded. When asked to take on more, she agrees cheerfully and manages the additional work with grace and efficiency,” says Dee Ann Holisky, senior associate dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Turriziani says she most enjoys interacting with so many people throughout the day. Not only is she constantly assisting students with problems and questions, she also works with faculty who call with issues concerning students.

Mary Jackson, graduate coordinator of the Economics Department, describes how Turriziani coached her through her first year at Mason.

“Without fail, I can always count on Susan to give me correct information about Mason’s policies and procedures regarding graduate students. Her willingness to share her Mason knowledge and experience enables me to do my job with confidence. For several months, I had to turn to Susan frequently each day asking for information, direction or advice.

Although I don’t need to ask about routine procedures anymore, I still turn to Susan for more complex student issues. Susan consistently responds in an energetic and positive way to all of my requests.”

Turriziani’s best memory at Mason is when the Mason men’s basketball team went to the Final Four. She says that the excitement of the tournament and the large number of people that were drawn to campus was an uplifting and positive change.

Originally from New Jersey, Turriziani lived in Plano, Texas, and worked in the consumer affairs department of Frito Lay before coming to Virginia in 1997. She worked at Spacenet in Tysons Corner before joining Mason in 2004.

Turriziani is thought of very highly by her colleagues who appreciate her character, professionalism and excellence.

“When I think of the characteristics of Employee of the Month, I imagine someone who exemplifies all the characteristics we value most at the university. The person is hard working, efficient, willing to help however and whenever they can, and genuinely cares about their colleagues and the university. Susan Turriziani embodies all of those characteristics and more. Susan has worked in my office for the past three years and I have found her to be professional, endlessly patient, friendly, conscientious, detail oriented, a team player and a morale booster,” comments Jamie S. Cooper, associate dean for graduate programs and services.

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