Make the most of your first year at George Mason University with the Schar School of Policy and Government's learning community, "the Democracy Lab." This academic community is an immersive environment that will broaden your perspective and hone your ability to engage on difficult topics—everything from the civic implications of big data to the growing impact of disinformation.
A Community of Change-Makers
In partnership with Mason's Housing & Residence Life, the Schar School's academic and learning community, "the Democracy Lab," is a learning experience open to all first-year Mason undergraduate students living on campus. Through the learning community, you will engage with the issues that define the journey of democracy in the United States and around the world. Plus, you'll build a strong network of students, professors, mentors, and advisors that will stay with you throughout your time at Mason and long after you graduate.
A Memorable Year
Students will benefit from a wide-range of experiences designed to expand their skillsets and perspectives.
Sharing a common course, GOVT 101, with other community members
Guest speakers, including community activists, policymakers, journalists, and subject matter experts
Facilitated coffee-house discussions around current events related to democracy
Skills workshops on data literacy and visualization, technologies for democracy (“liberation technology”), and effective online and social media communication for policy and government
An individual student project in the form of a policy studio or digital essay
A capstone field trip to a government agency or major think tank in Washington, D.C.