George Mason University is often considered a heavy "commuter school." Because of this, there is the stereotype that Mason lacks a sense of community and school pride. However, I couldn't find this farther from the truth. I, myself, am a commuter and I constantly find that there are various activities going on and much school involvement in the community. Opportunities abound to get involved in school activities if students are willing to just join in and participate. I think this stereotype persists because so many students are reluctant to join clubs or organizations which leads to them feeling disconnected to the school. I think with the expansion going on at Mason, this stereotype is starting to diminish as there is truly something for every student whether it be the Aquatic Center or the Performing Arts Building.
Everyone assumes that all Mason students are commuters who live at home with their parents, or middle aged people with careers returning to school to seek another degree. While GMU does support a large percentage of commuter students, we were recently declared a residential school. Since a lot of students who do live on campus are local, many return home for the weekends and campus can seem pretty empty at times. However, at George Mason, the experience is what you make it. Whether you live on or off campus, how much fun you have depends on how involved you get and how open you are to trying new things and making friends.
The stereotype of a GMU student is that everyone is a commuter and does their own thing and it's not a "community". This is not true at all. A good amount of students do commute but there are so many opportunities at GMU and many people take them. There are 100+ clubs and there are always things going on. It's not like everyone just goes home when they're done with class every day. There are sports games, restaurants, movies that go on everyday. You don't have to look hard to find something to do! Being a commuter school does not mean the school is "dead" after school hours!
Were all here because of GMU basketball. False. I think a lot of people keep saying the reason Mason keeps expanding and having an increasing number of students each year is because GMU basketball made it to the final for in 2006. I for one had no idea (out of state resident) that GMU ever made it, let alone what their reocrd was. It is 2011, almost 2012...2006 was long ago, and Mason hasn't been so impressive on the basketball court. This school offers wonderful diversity and and opportunity for people to learn from great educators.
The stereotype at George Mason University is that most of the student body is comprised of commuters. I would say there is a large population of commuters, but for the most part George Mason is growing as a whole. There are a large variety of students now, many of whom now live on campus. There is a large social scene as a result and new dining halls have also been build recently to accommodate the new population of incoming students.
Two of George Mason's biggest stereotypes are that it's a commuter school and that it's a very diverse school. These are both true and false. While Mason does have over 5,000 residential students, there are still thousands more who live off-campus, but many of these students are in the nearby area. Mason also has students from over 100 different countries, but is part of what makes Mason such a rich place to learn.
There is always some degree of truth to stereotypes, that is why they exist. But I think its important not to judge a person based on that. Give them the benefit of the doubt to prove you right (if its a positive stereotype) or wrong (if its negative). Anyways, to really answer the question, at GMU there is a divide amongst Greek life, normal students (again divided by whatever clubs you are in), and commuters.
The most common stereotype characterizes George Mason students as commuter students. In reality, the majority of students at George Mason do live off- campus, but there's also a growing population of students living on-campus. The demand for housing on- campus recently increased, and the on-campus population reached 5,400. Now, getting housing is more challenging for off- campus and transfer students.
The biggest stereotype at George Mason University is that everyone is a commuter and that we are a commuter school This is not true anymore! We are listed as a primary residential school and we have grown significantly since my freshman year. There is new housing going up every year and the school is also renovating the older housing to improve the on campus housing experience for students.
There don't seem to be any clique-style stereotypes at George Mason, but there is a general opinion in the Fairfax area that George Mason is not the best school to attend for whatever reason. This may have been associated with its commuter school status (which it no longer holds), but otherwise that stereotype has no real grounding.