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School of Public Policy and Department of Public and International Affairs Join Forces

By Buzz McClain, BA '77 on September 15, 2014

The George Mason University Board of Visitors has approved a merger of the university’s School of Public Policy and its Department of Public and International Affairs. The new School of Policy, Government, and International Affairs will be one of the largest schools of policy, government, and international affairs in the United States.

When classes begin in September, the school will serve approximately 700 undergraduate majors, 1,200 master’s candidates, and 200 doctoral students. Some 80 award-winning full-time faculty members will teach in 15 degree programs at Mason’s Fairfax and Arlington Campuses.

The merger seeks to raise George Mason’s profile in the Washington, D.C., region, an epicenter for public policy making and global affairs. The new, larger school offers students a greater variety of faculty and advisors, some of whom are also working at the highest levels of government, and an expanded curriculum for both professional and undergraduate programs. It will also enhance opportunities for student career development and respond to the strong demand for highly skilled professionals in the region and around the world.

The school will also feature research centers in a range of key areas of policy and international affairs and anticipates $5 million in externally funded research awards in its first year.

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