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Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Minimum GPA (Undergraduate): 2.25 Language of Instruction: English
Housing: Hotel Number of Credits Offered: 3
Eligible Population: 01 Freshman, 02 Sophomore, 03 Junior, 04 Senior, Graduate Type of Program: Faculty-led
Minimum GPA (Graduate): 3.0 Open to non-Mason Students: Yes
Program Description:

Foreign Investment & Global Integration

Cuba, Winter 2021

Cuba Images
This course provides students with both a background to Cuba’s economic situation (from the 1959 Cuban Revolution to the present) as well as an on-the-ground look at the country’s emerging economic transition in the context of globalization. We will pay special attention to economic reform in Cuba surrounding the economic crisis of the 1990s using texts, tools, and methodologies from across the social sciences. The goal of the course is to equip participants with a well-rounded set of analytical tools that help them assess both Cuba’s economic situation in the 21st century as well as the scope and effectiveness of recent economic reforms the country has undertaken. This course offers students an intellectually stimulating, innovative, and diverse program of study in a safe environment, with maximum exposure to the economic, cultural, and political life of contemporary Cuba. The structure of this program revolves around guest lectures at Cuba’s premier academic institutions, class meetings, and relevant site visits.

Program Highlights

  • This course provides students with a background to Cuba’s economic situation (from the Cuban Revolution to the present).
  • On-the-ground look at the country’s emerging economic transition in the context of globalization.
  • Students will attend lectures at the University of Havana and go on relevant site visits.


This program is open to all undergraduate and graduate students, including students who do not attend George Mason University. 

Undergraduate students must have a minimum GPA of 2.25.


Students will choose one 3-credit course during the application process.

Course Options

  • Global Affairs - GLOA 480: Study Abroad
  • Economics - ECON 492: Study Abroad
    • Prerequisites for ECON 492: must have completed at least one of these courses with a 'C' or higher: ECON 103, 104, or 385.
  • Government - GOVT 398: Study Abroad
  • Integrative Studies - INTS 399: Study Abroad
  • Global Affairs - GLOA 710: Seminar Abroad (only available for George Mason University students currently enrolled in the Masters in Global Affairs program)
  • Conflict Analysis - CONF 695: Selected Topics

Program Dates*

January 2 - 16, 2021


Sample Itinerary 

Day 1 Group arrives in Havana.
Day 2 Tour of Old Havana.
Day 3 Morning seminar: "The Economic Dynamics and Transformation Process in Cuba."  Afternoon meeting with students from
the University of Havana.
Day 4 Morning seminar on the "Foreign Direct Investments in Cuba: Current Trends and Perspectives."  Afternoon visit to an agricultural
micro-industry project: The Organoponic Urban Cooperative in Alamar, Habana del Este.
Day 5 Morning seminar: "External Finance in Cuba: External Debt and the Access to Multilateral Resources."  Afternoon meeting
with officials from the Cuban National Economist Association Consulting Firm (CANEC). Evening: El cañonazo de las nueve.
San Cristobal de La Cabana Fortress.
Day 6 Morning seminar: "The Current Cuban Foreign Trade: Obstacles and Perspectives."  Afternoon visit to the Center for the Study of Cuban Youth.
Day 7 Morning seminar: "Family Structure and Family Law in Cuba."  Afternoon visit to PROCuba, Center for Promoting Foreign Trade and Investment.
Day 8 Day trip to the Cuban Countryside (Pinar del Rio)
Day 9 Day trip to Guanabo Beach
Day 10 Morning Seminar: "Equity and Development: Opportunities and Challenges for Cuba." Afternoon meeting with students from the Higher Institute for International Relations.
Day 11 Morning Seminar: "Political System in Cuba: Keeping the Consensus." Afternoon meeting and debate with a specialist
on current Cuban policy on sexual diversity (CENESEX).
Day 12 Morning Seminar: "Cuban External Relations: The Role of China, Russia and European Union." Afternoon visit and lunch at a traditional
“Cuban paladar.”
Day 13 Morning Seminar: "Cuban Economic Relations with Latin American and Caribbean Nations." Visit to the community integral transformation project, People's Council "Principe," Revolution Square.
Day 14 Morning Seminar: "Cuba – USA Relations: Current Status and Perspectives." Farewell meeting at CIEI. Professors, students,
and directors from University of Havana will join the party.
Day 15 Students depart for the U.S.

* Dates and itinerary subject to change. The Global Education Office reserves the right to make changes to a program in light of currency fluctuations, changing security and safety conditions, and/or any other unforeseen circumstances.

Program Cost

Winter 2020: $4,009

Winter 2021: Available August 30, 2020

Included: Tuition for 3 credits, round-tip airfare between DC and Havana, accommodations, breakfasts and dinners daily, some additional group meals, guided tours and field excursions as described in itinerary, entry visa to Cuba, international emergency medical insurance.

Not included: Passport fees, some meals, personal spending, required textbooks and/or course materials.

Program Payments

Students on MasonGEO programs must pay the advertised program cost in order to participate. This cost will be made in three payments (Deposit + First Payment + Final Payment). Students using financial aid can provide additional paperwork in lieu of deposit and final balance payments.

Application Deposit: A non-refundable program deposit $200 must be received by the application deadline. This fee is paid online through the MasonAbroad application system and is included in the program fee.

First Payment: A non-refundable payment of $1000 must be received by October 20. This fee is paid online through the MasonAbroad application system and is included in the program fee. Students who are using financial aid may have this payment deadline extended. See "Financial Aid" information below.

In the event that a student’s financial aid or VA Benefits is estimated to cover the entire costs of the study abroad program, the entire charge will be posted to their student account, since that is where the aid will be applied. In this case students do not pay their first payment through MasonAbroad. However students must submit their “Intent to Use Financial Aid” form by the first deposit deadline.

Final Payment: The final balance payment is due by November 10. This is the difference of your Program Cost minus the $1200 you've already paid (Deposit + First Payment). Students who are using financial aid may have this payment deadline extended. See "Financial Aid" information below.

Financial Aid and VA Benefits: Students who intend to use financial aid or VA benefits to fund their program fees (partially or in full) must have the "Intent to Use Financial Aid" or "Intent to Use VA Benefits Form" completed and on file with the Global Education Office by the First Payment deadline. The "Intent to Use Financial Aid" form is available in the MasonAbroad application system once you have started your application for this program. If you are using VA Benefits please contact your program officer to request the "Intent to Use VA Benefits Form."

Withdrawal and Refund Policy: All participants are bound by the Mason GEO Withdrawal and Refund Policy.

Payment Instructions

For more information on payments, financial aid, and information for non-Mason students:



GEO offers a number of need- and merit-based scholarships. All Mason students on this program are welcome to apply:


Application Opens:

May 2020


Application Deadline:

October 10, 2020


Application requirements:*

Program Deposit: $200 for all applicants.

Course Selection Questionnaire: You will choose the course(s) you would like to be receive credit for on this program. Check the "Academics" tab to see what courses are offered on this program. If you need help selecting your course, check with your academic advisor.

Passport Status Questionnaire: You do not need a passport to complete this questionnaire or the application. However, if you do not have a valid passport, you should begin applying for one now. The Global Education Office offers Passport Grants to help.

Signature Documents: Read and electronically "sign" the documents regarding the acknowledgement of risk, the pre-departure orientation, and your financial responsibility.

Intent to Use Financial Aid Form: For Mason students only. If you use financial aid, this form must be completed by your financial aid counselor and submitted by the 1st payment deadline.

Additional requirements for non-Mason applicants:

Official transcript: To be mailed or emailed to the Global Education Office at George Mason University.

Non-degree Contract Course/Admission Form: Please complete the form and upload it into the questionnaire.

* Additional application requirements may apply to individual programs. Once you open your application, you will see all application requirements.

Application instructions:

Academic Director

  Lisa Breglia photo
Name Dr. Lisa Breglia
Phone 703-993-9184
  Make an appointment

GEO Program Administrator

  Admin photo Allie
Name Allie Wallace
Phone 703-993-2154

Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Winter Break 2021 10/10/2020 ** Rolling Admission 01/02/2021 01/16/2021

** 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.