George Mason University and INTO University Partnerships Sign Letter of Intent to Build Internationalization Initiative

Posted: October 31, 2013 at 5:00 am, Last Updated: October 31, 2013 at 7:31 am

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Media contact for George Mason University: Michele McDonald, 703-993-8781, mmcdon15@gmu.edu

Media contact for  INTO University Partnerships: Anne Jenkins,  703-624-6125, ajenkins@csg-pr.com

Fairfax, Va. – October 31, 2013 – George Mason University and INTO University Partnerships today announced the signing of a letter of intent to form a joint venture designed to increase the university’s global reach and expand international student enrollment. Mason and INTO Partnerships are finalizing an agreement that is expected to be submitted to the Mason Board of Visitors for approval in mid-December.

The proposed venture would be an important part of the new Mason strategic plan, also scheduled for review in December, which calls on the university to deepen its commitment to global education.

“The collaboration with INTO will help us deliver on key aspects of the university’s vision and strategic plan, which calls for us to produce 100,000 graduates over the next decade and to expand our reach as a global university,” said President Ángel Cabrera.

INTO is a private company that partners with leading universities in the United States, United Kingdom and Asia to expand opportunities for higher education, ensuring student success and achieving a globally diverse and integrated campus community. An INTO partnership facilitates broad engagement with the entire university community by creating opportunities for faculty and staff, enhancing the educational experience for domestic students and improving outcomes for international students.

Mason’s decision to consider a partnership with INTO comes after several months of discussions, on-campus presentations and town hall meetings, as well as visits to two of INTO’s current partner institutions in the United States.

Expanding the number of international students on Mason’s campuses also will help strengthen the university’s commitment to provide an enriched learning experience for Virginia and other domestic students, whose enrollment is also planned to grow under the university’s new vision. “The importance of a global education will continue to increase as the world becomes more and more connected.  We owe it to our students to provide a rich global learning environment,” said Cabrera.
To design the partnership agreement, several working groups have been established with more than 100 Mason faculty, staff and students, and representatives from INTO. The partnership with INTO will help build upon existing programs and further increase the diversity of international perspectives on all campuses.

“George Mason has a strong record and reputation of innovation and entrepreneurship, and their proximity to Washington, D.C., puts them in a unique and exciting position to increase their reach and impact globally,” said David Stremba, managing director of North America, INTO University Partnerships. “We are excited for Mason to potentially join our growing network of leading universities committed to comprehensive internationalization and offering a richer education experience.”

Through INTO’s extensive global recruitment network across 75 countries, the approved partnership would grow the international student population and enroll the first INTO Mason cohort of students in academic year 2014-15. International students at INTO Mason will benefit from university-designed programs, university-led teaching and a supportive university environment while enjoying full access to Mason’s campus facilities and services.

If the partnership is agreed upon, Mason will become the fifth U.S. institution to partner with INTO, joining Oregon State University, University of South Florida, Colorado State University and Marshall University. Since 2006, INTO has successfully launched partnerships with 17 universities around the world. Each INTO partnership is individually planned through a collaborative process and designed to address the specific goals and objectives of the institution.

For more information about George Mason University, please visit www.gmu.edu. For more information about INTO University Partnerships, please visit www.into-corporate.com.

About George Mason University

George Mason University is an innovative, entrepreneurial institution with global distinction in a range of academic fields. Located in Northern Virginia near Washington, D.C., Mason provides students access to diverse cultural experiences and the most sought-after internships and employers in the country. Mason offers strong undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering and information technology, organizational psychology, health care and visual and performing arts. With Mason professors conducting groundbreaking research in areas such as climate change, public policy and the biosciences, George Mason University is a leading example of the modern, public university. George Mason University—Where Innovation Is Tradition.

About INTO University Partnerships

Universities partner with INTO to advance their ambitious comprehensive internationalization agendas. INTO’s deeply embedded joint ventures create a globally diverse and integrated campus, improve the overall student experience, and increase international students’ access to higher education. Through INTO’s resources and expertise institutions expand their ability to create highly supportive academic environments, establish state-of-the-art learning and living spaces and deliver university-designed programs. Since 2006, INTO has established partnerships with 17 universities in the UK, the US and China. These partnerships have helped more than 5,000 international students from over 100 countries begin their academic studies at partner institutions in North America, including Oregon State University, the University of South Florida, Colorado State University and Marshall University. More information can be found at www.into-corporate.com or follow INTO @INTOnetwork.

Write to Michele McDonald at mmcdon15@gmu.edu

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