Creating more opportunities for students to make meaning of the Mason Core educational offerings, to draw greater connections to the larger university community, and to develop additional marketable skill sets, the Mason Core Engagement Series (ENCORE) began in Fall 2016 with the entering freshmen class. This program is an optional pathway for students interested in combining academic coursework with co-curricular activities towards a completion certificate in a specific area of engagement.
Each ENCORE program combines courses within the Mason Core categories with co-curricular activities that enhance classroom learning. Courses are identified in the catalog and in the schedule of classes, enabling a student to select those relevant to the specific engagement series. Out of the approximately 40 credits of Mason Core requirements, at least 18 credits must be related to the relevant ENCORE program.
Working in conjunction with University Life and the Patriot Experience, each Engagement Series maps to one of four pathways – career readiness, civic learning/community engagement, global/multicultural, or well-being.
After completing the Mason Core classes and the Patriot Experience pathway, students will earn a Mason Core completion certificate. This achievement will be recognized on the academic transcript and honored at graduation.
The ability to thrive and succeed as students, employees, organizations, and in life, directly correlates to one’s sense of well-being. Mason has committed to being a “Well-Being University” focused on helping students, faculty and staff build lives with vitality, purpose, and resilience. The Engagement Series in Well-Being identifies offerings that contribute significantly to students’ understanding and practice of well-being. These offerings include both well-being-focused and well-being-related courses that are designated in the catalog and in the schedule of classes.
Sustainability programs at Mason seek to guide students as they critically assess the environmental, social, economic and ethical impacts of technology and policy decisions. The Engagement Series in Sustainability identifies Green Leaf Programs and Courses designated offerings that contribute significantly to students’ understanding and practice of sustainability. These offerings extend beyond environmental management, natural resources protection and conservation studies alone to embrace economic development and social responsibility. Both sustainability-focused and sustainability-related courses may receive the green leaf designation.