Mason Family Flash

Your Talents + Skills + Knowledge = Your Clifton Strengths

Since 2015, over 23,000 Mason Patriots have completed the Clifton Strengths assessment, which is a talent assessment tool used to magnify, identify, understand, and develop important factors in students. Exploring Strengths will help students experience greater Well-Being, achieve goals, and add to growth inside and outside of the classroom. Not only are students encouraged to take the assessment, faculty and staff have embraced the assessment as a useful tool in the approach to our work and partnerships here at Mason.

Clifton Strengths philosophy is to embrace a new way of thinking and imagine…”What will happen when we think about what is right with people rather than fixating on what is wrong with them?”

This 20-minute assessment, will give students the opportunity to develop their Strengths by building on their greatest talents — the way in which one most naturally thinks, feels, and behaves as a unique individual. Mason has paid for all students to take this assessment for free at Once complete, the student will receive a report that identifies their Top 5 Strengths and ways to apply these Strengths to everyday life.

Clifton Strengths is…

  • A tool for personal development.
  • Understanding how you view the world.
  • Common language to integrate within an organization.
  • Where you find your energy vs. what exhausts you.

Clifton Strengths is not…

  • A tool for hiring.
  • Identifying the “right” vs. “wrong” or “good vs. “bad” talents
  • About labeling people.
  • A tool to provide an explanation of who you are and why you do things.

At Mason we are building a Strengths-based culture by encouraging students to take the assessment, and become familiar with the language and how to utilize their unique Strengths. We also want students to make their Strengths visible by posting their Top 5 using a door deck, sharing about their experiences on social media @MasonStrengths, or even rocking a Strengths T-shirt.

“When students not only know their strengths — but more importantly, apply them — the effect on their lives is transformational.” CliftonStrengths for Students.

Here are three quick ways to help your student get connected to their Top 5 Strengths

  1. Encourage your student to take the free assessment –
  2. Encourage your student to make a 1:1 coaching appointment, or workshop request if they are a member of a club or campus organization.
  3. Encourage your student to invest time in knowing and applying their Strengths in their work, classrooms, and personal life.
  4. Remember the Strengths equation: Your Talents + Skill + Knowledge = Your Clifton Strengths

Mason is so fortunate to have family members like you all who are supportive and interested in the growth and development of your student. We think that the Clifton Strengths assessment will be a useful tool of your student for years to come!

Lewis E. Forrest, II
Associate Dean, University Life
Co-Chair Mason’s Strength Academy

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