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  • Locations: Cape Town, South Africa; Johannesburg, South Africa; Pretoria, South Africa
  • Program Terms: Summer
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Budget Sheets: Summer
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Fact Sheet:
Language of Instruction:
Number of Credits Offered:
Eligible Population: Graduate Type of Program: Faculty-led
Open to non-Mason Students: Yes
Program Description:

South Africa: Contemporary Issues in Governance, Development, and Global Health

This study-abroad course examines the political, economic, social and security challenges confronting South Africa today, twenty years after its emergence as a multi-party democracy. These include poverty alleviation, black economic empowerment, education, land, the HIV/AIDS crisis, and the environment. The course also explores South Africa in its regional setting, with specific attention to issues such as Zimbabwe, regional integration through SADC (Southern African Development Community), efforts at peacekeeping and conflict resolution (Democratic Republic of Congo), and South Africa as a continental power driving NEPAD (New Partnership for Africa’s Development). An examination of trade and investment issues affecting the country’s international position, including the country’s membership in BRICS, brings a global perspective.

Classes take place in Pretoria (on the campus of the University of Pretoria) and Cape Town (on the campus of the Business School of the University of Cape Town), with lectures by a variety of specialists, including academics and practitioners. Formal sessions are complemented by various site visits, governmental and non-governmental, to encourage a more comprehensive understanding of the multi-faceted issues affecting the country and society. The program aims to provide context for understanding the rapid change that South Africa has experienced during the past twenty years and the dynamic nature of the country as Africa’s powerhouse

Program Details

Credits Offered

  • ITRN 702: Special Topics in Study Abroad


This program is open to all graduate students, post-doctoral researchers, and faculty members including those who do not attend or work at George Mason University.


Double occupancy in hotels. There is a single room option for an additional $600. Students who are accepted to this program will complete a questionnaire to indicate preference.

Program Cost (Summer 2018): $4300

Program Itinerary*

Day 1 Individual arrival to Pretoria (fly into JNB). Orientation.Welcome Dinner.
Day 2 Class. Group lunch. Group dinner.
Day 3 Visit to AIDS Centre, Pretoria City Tour, Group Braai.
Day 4 Visit to Johannesburg
Day 5 Class. Group lunch.
Day 6 Walk with the lions. Group flight to Cape Town.
Day 7 Robben Island visit. Group Lunch. Cape of Good Hope tour.
Day 8 Class. Group lunch.
Day 9 Class. Group lunch.
Day 10 Visit to BEI, closing luncheon and awards ceremony. Drive through winelands.
DAy 11 Individual check-out. Participants can elect to stay a couple of nights for additional sightseeing. Our South African travel agent will offer packages for overnight in same hotel with day safari, cruise to see sharks, and wine tours. Contact for details.

*Instructor reserves the right to modify the course schedule as needed


  • Tuition (3 credits)
  • Accommodations 
  • In-country travel to all program activities
  • All lectures and seminars
  • Group flight to Cape Town
  • Some meals
  • International Emergency Insurance
Not Included:
  • Round-trip airfare
  • Other transportation
  • Some meals
  • Personal spending

Contact Information

Program Officer

Michal McElwain Malur

Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2017 04/15/2017
Rolling Admission 05/22/2017 06/01/2017

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.

Indicates that deadline has passed

This program is currently not accepting applications.