Pictured: Silver memorial plaque with names on it overlooking a CGPS hallway
Pictured: Clement Memorial Service Award plaque at CGPS

"Integrity, honesty, respect": CGPS service award presented to Susan Mason

On Wednesday, January 18th, 2023, the inaugural Clement Employee Service Awards were presented to recognize the outstanding contributions of two USask staff members. Susan Mason, Graduate Programs Advisor with the College of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (CGPS) is one of two recipients of this award being recognized for her commitment to supporting graduate students.

Susan Mason accepting the Clement Memorial Service Award presented by Kelly Clement's family and CGPS Dean Debby Burshtyn
Susan Mason accepting the Clement Memorial Service Award presented by Kelly Clement's family and CGPS Dean Debby Burshtyn

The award was granted to USask staff members whose actions best exemplified CGPS’ three 2025 aspirational areas: achieving inclusive academic excellence by mobilizing exceptional graduate student experiences, creating knowledge and skills that supports graduate students beyond traditional degree outcomes, and emboldening USask’s internal and external graduate community.

As a program advisor at USask, Susan makes grad students lives’ easier by supporting the work of the staff and faculty in individual academic units. “My role in the process is to ensure institutional technicalities are a help and not a hindrance to the education and progress of students,” explains Susan. In this role, she serves as a wealth of information and institutional knowledge and is known by her colleagues as a problem-solver capable of consistently balancing complex policies and procedures with the well-being and success of each student.

Beyond Susan’s ability to find creative solutions to complicated problems, she is also a shining example of positivity and integrity. “No question is too trivial or too difficult to ask – each enquiry is treated with equal respect and given full attention. If she does not immediately have an answer, we can confidently rely on Susan to investigate and follow up with an answer or connect us with the person who could,” according to colleagues at CGPS, “In fact, we all agree that we would be lost without Susan, and we could not do our jobs efficiently without her support and guidance.” Susan is considered a leader in the graduate community and her commitment to creating an honest, ethical, and respectful environment is evident in every conversation.

“I like to do a good job and I believe that education and universities play an important role in society. I am also inspired by the hard work and dedication of the students and people I work with,” said Susan when asked what motivates her to go above and beyond to support grad students. “I was fortunate enough to work for many years with Kelly Clement, so I feel very honoured to be associated with an award that carries her name. I am also very appreciative that the people who put the effort into creating the nomination package think I am deserving of the honour.”

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