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Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Minimum GPA (Undergraduate): 2.25 Language of Instruction: English
Number of Credits Offered: 3 Eligible Population: 01 Freshman, 02 Sophomore, 03 Junior, 04 Senior, Graduate
Type of Program: Faculty-led Click here for a definition of this term Area of Study: Sociology, Honors, Government and International Policy, Conflict Analysis and Resolution, Criminology Law and Society, History, Integrative Studies
Open to non-Mason Students: Yes
Program Description:

Human Trafficking and Modern-day Slavery in Zanzibar

Tanzania, Winter 2022

Zanzibar Banner
With its miles of white, sandy beaches, kissed by the emerald waters of the surrounding Indian Ocean, Zanzibar evokes images of an idyllic and alluring tropical paradise. The unique cobble stone streets and alleyways of UNESCO World Heritage designated Stone Town coupled with the open, embracing Swahili culture of the Zanzibari people hint at the island's historic position as a major crossroads where Africa, the Middle East and Asia converge. However, belying this idyllic and historic setting is the the darker, more haunting role that Zanzibar played in the Trans-Indian Ocean slave trade that ultimately and profoundly changed the region. It is against this amazing backdrop and paradox that we will examine the very difficult and still highly relevant problem of slavery and trafficking in human beings.
Using a highly interactive and experiential format, this course will introduce students to the history of buying, selling, and bondage of human beings. Following in the footsteps of Arab, Indian, Chinese and European traders and traffickers who have been drawn to Zanzibar for centuries, students in this course will go on the island’s unique spice tours and visit plantations that have historically fueled the demand for cheap human labor. A number of classes will be built around field activities that will bring students into contact with the Zanzibari people, and especially their cuisine, so that students will experience first-hand the unique fusion that is Swahili culture. The course will especially explore the contemporary forms of slavery and human trafficking and will examine some of the major philosophical, legal, economic, public policy, social and practical law enforcement issues involved in the struggle against such practices. The course will close with an invitation to students to engage themselves in suggested ways to advance that struggle and to think about new ways to achieve an effective and enduring abolition.

Program Highlights

  • Study in one of the most beautiful locations on Earth with amazing beaches and lush tropical rainforests
  • Experience the unique Swahili culture, a fusion of Africa, the Middle East and Asia
  • Receive lectures from Dr. Bernard Freamon, one of the foremost experts on slavery and Human Trafficking
  • Opportunity to explore Tanzania and the African mainland.


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

Students must have a minimum GPA of 2.25.


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

Course Options

  • Integrative Studies - INTS 399: Study Abroad
  • History - HIST 387: Topics in Global History
  • Government - GOVT 398: Study Abroad
  • Sociology - SOCI 395: Special Topics in Sociology
  • Conflict Analysis - CONF 399: Special Topics in Conflict Analysis and Resolution
  • Conflict Analysis - CONF 385: International Field Experience
  • Criminology - CRIM 485: Study Abroad
  • Criminology - CRIM 490: Special Topics
*This course has previously offered HNRS credit - if you are interested in HNRS credit please contact the Honors College.

  • Integrative Studies - INTS 595: Experiential Learning 

Tentative Program Dates

December 31, 2021 - January 15, 2022

Day 1
  • Students Arrival Dar es Salaam.
  • Shuttle from airport to Holiday Inn.
  • Introduction to program and Welcome Dinner
Day 2
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Morning Lecture: Understanding the Scope and Dimensions of Human Trafficking Lunch provided
  • Afternoon Excursion trip to Bagamoyo
  • Prof. Semahane 
Day 3
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Morning Lecture: Understanding the Context of the History of Slavery Lunch Provided
  • Excursion City Tour of Dar el Salaam
Day 4
  • Buffet breakfast at hotel, checkout 
  • Ocean Ferry to Zanzibar Island
  • Check-in to Tausi Palace Hotel afternoon free
Day 5
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Morning Lecture: Definitions of Slavery and Human Trafficking Lunch provided
  • Afternoon excursion tour of Historic Stone town
Day 6
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Morning Lecture: Abolitionism Lunch provided
  • Afternoon Free Afternoon
Day 7
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Morning Lecture: Slavery in the 20th and 21st centuries.
  • Rain Forest Tour (Jozani)
Day 8
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Morning Lecture: Understanding Terms, Definitions and Intersectionality  
  • Prison Island excursion at 12 noon."Dolphins Sundowner"
Day 9
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Lecture: Palermo Protocol, Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) and Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report
  • FREE  afternoon
Day 10
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • All day Safari Blue 
Day 11
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Morning Lecture:The Economics of Human Trafficking
  • Afternoon Excursion The Spice Tour (3 hours)
Day 12

  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Morning Lecture: Sex Trafficking Lunch Provided
  • Afternoon Excursion Slave Caves
Day 13
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Morning Lecture: Feminism and Human Trafficking
  • Sand Bar Excursion
Day 14
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Morning Lecture: Forced Labor and Organ Trafficking
  • Kendwa Beach
Day 15
  • Buffet Breakfast
  • Morning Lecture: Taking Action to Stamp Out Slavery and Human Trafficking
  • Afternoon Farewell Dinner at the Sultan's Palace
Day 16
  • Breakfast at Hotel
  • 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 2022: Coming Soon!

Winter 2021: $3,800

The Program Cost for study abroad courses is assessed separately from Mason tuition and fees. This means separate charges will be put on your student account for this course, a study abroad tuition charge and a study abroad program fee charge which together equal the published Program Cost for this course. 


  • Tuition for 3 credits
  • Accommodations
  • Some meals
  • Guided tours and excursions as described in itinerary
  • International emergency medical insurance.

Not included: Airfare*, passport and visa fees, COVID-19 testing in the U.S. before departure, COVID-19 testing while abroad, vaccinations, some meals, daily transportation, personal spending, required textbooks and/or course materials.

*Note: This program does not include a group flight. Information regarding arrival times and location will be sent out to all participants after the application deadline. Do not purchase airfare until you receive the "Green Light for Flights" notice from the Global Education Office via email. The notice will include information on the arrival/departure airports, flight times, and where to meet the group. Students who fail to follow the guidelines GEO sends out will be responsible for applicable costs of changing their flights.

When the time comes to purchase airfare, GEO will be recommending the purchase of Flight Interruption and Cancellation Insurance. The “Green Light for Flights” email will provide additional information about this insurance. 

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. All payments and charges are reflected in the student's Mason Student Account.

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 20th. 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 10th. 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 Deadline:

October 10th


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

  Brian Gibson Headshot
Name Dr. Brian Gibson
Phone 703-993-2519

GEO Program Administrator

Name Brittany Samko
Phone 703-993-2155

Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Winter Break 2022 10/10/2021 ** Rolling Admission 12/31/2021 01/15/2022

** 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.