STEP Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What does virtual STEP look like?
It is the same format as the STEP program on-campus. There are morning meetings, mentor activities, evening study halls, team bonding events, movie nights, and class time. There are also various workshops, and set time for classwork. A lot of the program is conducted face-to-face over Zoom, but is still fun and engaging!

How many hours a week does STEP require?
The CCEE faculty team would like to emphasize the commitment aspect of the STEP program during the summer, as well as your following years at the University. The STEP Summer program activities amount to about 20-25 hours a week, while you may spend another 20 hours a week in class, studying, or reading. It is a full-time commitment, whether it is in-person or on-campus. However, your class will only meet a few times a week.

What is expected of STEP students?
The expectations of STEP students are as follows:

  • You must attend ALL workshops and meetings
  • You must be on-time and participate
  • You must be willing to work hard to succeed in your STEP course
  • You must be open-minded and accepting of diversity

What courses can you choose from? Are we able to choose the course we want to take?
The courses vary each year but consist of 100’s level English, Math, Science, History, Communications, Honors (HNRS) course, and other electives like Women and Gender Studies or World Religions. While you will not be able to select the exact course, you will be enrolled in, you will be placed based in a class based on your major requirements, credits you have transferred in, class availability, and capacity.

What is UNIV 100? Is it a requirement? Is it for credit?
UNIV 100 is a required course that all students take in the fall of their Freshman year. It is referred to as a class on “how to succeed in college.” Topics such as stress management, mental health, study habits, and how to get involved at George Mason. The class counts for 1 credit, but you are able to take it as a non-credit course.

You can learn more about the course here:

Can you take other classes while doing STEP?
No, you are not able to take other classes while participating in the STEP Summer Program. STEP is a full-time commitment due to various activities, workshops, and study halls. There will be no extra time to devote to another course, especially if the program is in-person.

Can you do STEP if you are in the honors college?
Yes, honors college students are able to participate in STEP, and various courses such as honors, math, or science courses can fulfill honors college curriculum requirements.

Are you allowed to have a job or go on vacation during the STEP Summer Program?
No, you will be very busy during the 6 weeks of the STEP program. Programs, workshops, events, class, homework, and study sessions will be a full-time commitment.

How do you accept financial responsibility for the STEP program? Are there any costs involved?
There are ZERO costs involved with the STEP program. If the program is in-person, all living, food, and activity expenses are covered! Any class materials like textbooks or access codes for the STEP summer course are covered as well. However, if a student does not complete the UNIV 100 course in the fall, therefore failing to complete the STEP program, following their STEP summer, they will be responsible for the costs of the STEP Summer tuition and fees.