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Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Language of Instruction: English Housing: Hotel
Number of Credits Offered: 3 Eligible Population: Graduate, PhD
Type of Program: Faculty-led Click here for a definition of this term Area of Study: Conflict Analysis and Resolution
Click here for a definition of this term Study Abroad Host: School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution Minimum GPA (Graduate): 3.25
Open to non-Mason Students: Yes
Program Description:

Bridging Differences: Migration in the Mediterranean

Malta, Spring Break 2020

Malta banner
This course focuses on the challenge of bridging differences (cultural, racial, economic, religious, gender, refugee status, etc.) in light of recent migration to Europe via the Mediterranean Sea and other routes. Migrants fleeing direct and structural violence encounter opposition to their presence in European countries and have difficulty achieving stability and acceptance in host nations. Differences are frequently the site of misunderstanding, tension, and conflict between migrants and host country residents and within and across these and other social groups.
A variety of integration initiatives have been mounted to prevent and manage conflict by bridging differences and, ideally, fostering constructive relationships. Whether in the form of community dialogues, multicultural festivals, or peace building skills workshops, integration initiatives mounted by NGOs and migrants themselves are on the increase.
Many questions about integration initiatives remain unanswered, such as: What legal, social, and political (among other) divisions keep groups and individuals apart in societies with significant populations of recent migrants? How do migrants and residents themselves understand the divisions? What kinds of integration initiatives are commonly mounted? Which ones hold the most promise for bridging differences that might foment conflict? The development of integration initiatives will only increase as populations of migrants settle in European nations; thus, identifying and implementing constructive approaches, informed by the conflict field, will remain important for years to come. 
Research on these integration initiatives is limited and we know very little about how conflict resolution approaches are being used to bridge differences and their potential for future integration initiatives. The learning objectives of the course are aimed at engaging students in answering the questions above through library research, analysis of data from a research project focused on integration, and field based research (focus groups, interviews, and participant observation) on several integration initiatives in Malta, an island nation in the Mediterranean.


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


Students will be registered for one 3-credit course. There is an online/Blackboard component that must be completed before the program begins.

Course Options

  • Conflict Analysis - CONF 625: Engaging Conflict
  • Conflict Analysis - CONF 695: Selected Topics

Program Dates*

March 7-14, 2020

Please note this course will include an online course requirement. Students are expected to complete the online requirements before their departure.


The dates listed above are in-country days of the program. Students who arrive before the program starts or stay after the program ends are responsible for their own accommodations and all other expenses associated with independent travel.

Note: This course will include an online course requirement that will be available on Blackboard in November. Students are expected to complete the online requirements before their departure in January.

Important Dates
Blackboard course opens  
Mandatory Pre-trip session February 14 & 22
Leave U.S. March 7
Arrive in Malta March 8
Course in Malta March 8-14
Leave Malta March 14
Return to U.S. March 14
Post-Trip Meeting April TBD
* 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

Spring Break 2020: $3,200

Included: Tuition for 3 credits, double occupancy hotel accommodations, some meals, program activities as described in itinerary, transportation in Malta, international emergency medical insurance.

Not included: Round-trip airfare*, passport and visa fees, personal spending, required textbooks and/or course materials. *Note: Participants must arrange their own airfare once instructed to do so by the program administrator.

Program Payments

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

Program Deposit: Accepted students must make a non-refundable program deposit of $500 by February 1, 2020. This fee is paid through the Mason Student Accounts Office. This deposit is included in the program fee.

Final Payment: The final balance payment is due by February 28, 2020. This is the difference of your Program Cost minus the $500 you've already paid (Deposit). 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."

Non-Mason Students: Non-Mason students must be admitted to the University and assigned a student number prior to making payments. Please submit the "Non-degree Contract Course/Admission Form" during the application phase in order to begin this process.

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

Application Deadline:

January 26, 2020


Application requirements:*

S-CAR Application Questions: This questionnaire includes questions about previous experiences and coursework relevant to your program participation.

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.

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:

GEO Program Administrator

Name Sami Sonkowsky

Academic Director

  Susan Hirsch (S-CAR)
Name Dr. Susan Hirsch
Phone 703-993-9407

Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring Break 2020 02/08/2020
Rolling Admission 03/07/2020 03/14/2020

** 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.