Dual Degree Program Reaches across Continents

Posted: July 3, 2003 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Tara Laskowski

A new partnership between George Mason’s School of Management (SOM) and Aachen University in Germany will allow students from both institutions to earn dual degrees and gain international business experience.

The dual degree partnership is a first for George Mason and marks the first time that Aachen University business programs have formed such a partnership with an American university. Aachen already has partnerships with European countries such as England, Ireland, and Spain.

Aachen first contacted George Mason through Yehuda Lukacs, director of the Center for Global Education at George Mason, just after the Sept.11, 2001, terrorist attacks to offer six scholarships for George Mason students to attend the German university. SOM and the Center for Global Education have been working closely with Aachen ever since.

“The Dual Degree Program with Aachen University of Applied Sciences symbolizes the global reach of the School of Management and underscores our commitment to innovation and quality,” says Jim Harvey, associate dean for undergraduate programs, “and is an important first step in deepening our relationship with this great German institution.”

SOM students participating in the program will study at Aachen University in their third year with German students and other dual degree students from around the world. They will return to George Mason for their senior year to complete their bachelor’s degree in their major. Upon successful completion of the program, each student will receive a second degree from the host university.

Aachen students in their fourth year will attend classes at George Mason and take advantage of internships in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, acclimating themselves to American-style business. After returning to Aachen to complete a fifth year, these students will earn a bachelor’s degree from George Mason and a master’s degree from their home university.

Students from both universities will be required to write an honors thesis, which must be approved by both institutions. The thesis committee will include faculty from Aachen and George Mason.

“We are delighted to learn that we will receive two Aachen students this fall, and we are in the process of identifying SOM students who are interested in studying in Germany,” says Harvey. “It is an exciting opportunity for our students and shows the continuing strength of the School of Management.”

Finance Professor Robert D. Johnston will represent SOM at a signing ceremony that will take place in Aachen, Germany, tomorrow.

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