Letter from the Dean

Photo of Dean Özerdem in front of S-CAR sign on the Arlington Campus

October 15, 2019

Dear Alumni:

It is my great pleasure to write to you as the new Dean of the School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University. I began my tenure just before the start of the academic year, an ideal time to observe the enthusiasm and energy of our incoming students. I am grateful for the warm welcome I have received from so many—demonstrating what a special community S-CAR is and reaffirming my commitment to uphold those ideals.

In the coming months, I look forward to connecting with you and learning how you came to S-CAR and what the experience meant for your future. As a scholar and peacebuilder, I have great respect for the important contributions the over 2,000 S-CAR alumni have made and I hope you know how important your stories are to our community. The success of our alumni helps further the goals of S-CAR by attracting the best of the next generation of thought leaders. You are examples of what is possible with a degree from S-CAR, your work brings positive change to the world and I am committed to championing your contributions. 

Reinforcing a strong community is one of my top goals for my time at S-CAR. We have an obligation as the leaders of the field, and the founders of a degree in conflict analysis and resolution, to maintain a vibrant community of peacebuilders. To further that end, S-CAR is launching a number of initiatives detailed below and I invite you to join us in making these programs thrive!

  • ProSeminar Speakers Series 
    The School is partnering with the Graduate Student Association to bring alumni from across professions and academia back to campus to share their expertise, insights of the field, and ways to innovate. These monthly events are an opportunity to connect with fellow alumni and help our students better prepare for all that comes after graduation.

  • Mentor Students
    We invite you to meet our current students, starting with this fall’s incoming cohort, and learn about their interests and areas of focus. Our students are eager to learn more and the annual cohort book allows alumni to reach out to students with valuable guidance and professional resources. Are there internship or professional opportunities your organizations can offer them? What advice would you share? Request a copy of the current cohort book.

  • Regional Hubs
    As you know so well, S-CAR alumni are all over the world but we want to create a home for you, wherever you are. To help grow the sense of community, we will be visiting local and national regions with high populations of alumni, working to scale activities to match our global presence. You can help us by ensuring your contact information is up to date, letting us know what types of engagement opportunities would be most meaningful for alumni, and by working with us to lead a regional hub in your area. Keep an eye out for events during the year!

In closing, thank you for all you do to make S-CAR a success. Please consider this an open invitation to share your thoughts and views on the focus areas of teaching, research, and impact at S-CAR. I am excited to connect with you soon and hope to see you at an upcoming event. I believe that a close partnership between alumni and the School can help us meet our fullest potential.

With best regards,

Alpaslan Özerdem
School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution