Social Entrepreneurship Concentration

Engaging with real-world issues while committing to social justice and to caring for human dignity


The Social Entrepreneurship concentration (SOCE) provides the theoretical and practical toolkit to engage real-world issues in industry, nonprofits, government, public policy, and education. Underlying the social entrepreneurship program is a commitment to social justice and care for human dignity. By the end of the program you will be equipped to analyze problems, develop strategies to solve them, and execute these solutions effectively. Mason’s commitment to innovation creates an environment where emerging social entrepreneurs can turn innovative ideas into reality.

Now Available: Option to complete this concentration online!

Not yet in a position to move to the Metro DC area?  Courses are conveniently offered in person and online, allowing students to complete the program from almost anywhere. 

When you apply, there is no need to decide whether you want to take classes online or in person. Online courses are available for all students. See the online course options here.

Who's in the Program

Students range from recent college graduates to mid-career professionals, and include athletes, professionals working in the nonprofit, government, and private sectors, and people who want to start their own business. A trait shared by those in the SOCE program is a desire to model and implement sustainable, practical, and ethical solutions to social problems, while working effectively within complex networks made up of divergent groups of stakeholders.

Experiential Learning

Experiential learning is an essential component of your degree. You will engage in internships and other co-curricular activities. Students have interned at Ashoka, a global network for social entrepreneurship, as well as with the Armed Services Arts Partnership, an organization reintegrating veterans through the arts, and Together We Bake, a comprehensive workforce training and personal development program. Mason’s location in the Washington, D.C. area affords students unparalleled access to key business, public, and nonprofit organizations.

Career Paths

Graduates move on to successful careers in higher education and nonprofit organizations. Others choose to start their own businesses. The concentration in SOCE will equip students with the subject matter expertise, strategic knowledge, technical support, and social networks needed to create, operate, develop, and accelerate startups; bring ideas to scale; and improve existing programs' effectiveness.

Faculty and Research

Faculty in this program are both traditional academics and practitioners with experience in the world of social entrepreneurship. They have expertise in social innovation, leadership and institutional change, management, and financial analysis, as well as experience across the range of public and private sectors.

George Mason University is No. 1 among public universities for research performance in entrepreneurship, and No. 2 overall nationally, in the latest report from EduRank.

“Mason is committed to accelerating the translation of research into practice by leveraging university talent, infrastructure, and partnerships to create solutions for societies’ toughest challenges at speed and scale,” said Andre Marshall, Mason’s vice president for research, innovation, and economic impact. “It is a credit to our faculty and students that Mason is a place where we can put theory into practice.”

Mason’s research is best in Virginia in multiple EduRank rankings