George Mason University
George Mason University (GMU, Mason, or George Mason) is a public research university in Fairfax, Virginia. It was officially established in 1956 as a Northern Virginia branch of the University of Virginia and later became an independent institution in 1972. It has since grown to become the largest four-year public university in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The university is named after the founding father George Mason, a Virginia planter and politician who authored the Virginia Declaration of Rights, the basis for the U.S. Constitution’s Bill of Rights. Mason operates four campuses in Virginia, with a fifth campus in Songdo, South Korea.
The university is classified among “R1: Doctoral Universities – Very high research activity”. The university is particularly well known in the fields of economics and law and economics. Mason faculty have twice won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics: James M. Buchanan in 1986 and Vernon L. Smith in 2002.
Eagle Bank Arena (formerly the Patriot Center), a 10,000-seat arena and concert venue operated by the university, is located on the main Fairfax campus. The university recognizes 500 student groups as well as 41 fraternities and sororities.