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Programs : Brochure
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Washington Semester Program
Washington D.C., United States (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms: Fall,
Homepage: Click to visit
Restrictions: Gonzaga applicants only
Budget Sheets Fall,
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring 2018 10/01/2017 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be notified of acceptance into this program upon review of the student's application and upon acceptance be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.
Fact Sheet:
Area of Studies: Business, Economics, Environmental Studies, International Studies, Journalism, Law, Political Science Featured Programs by Department: Political Science
Minimum GPA Requirement: 2.5 Additional Features: Internship
Faculty Leader(s): Garvin, Blaine Program Type: Sponsored
Language of Instruction: English Housing Options: Apartment
Program Description:
Established in 1947, the Washington Semester Program is an academic experiential learning program for students who, at the time they participate in the Program, will be at least in their second semester of their second year of college. It includes 8 credits of academic seminar in one of 12 topic areas, 4 credits of internship, and the option of taking an additional 3-4 credits of independent research or an elective course.Washington D.C.

The seminar will give you the chance to meet professionals who are chest-deep in the fields you are studying so that you gain valuable expert insights first-hand.

At your internship, you'll get real-world work experience while making connections with leaders in Washington, D.C.
The research project or elective course lets you take your experience one step further and use the valuable resources that AU and Washington, D.C. have to offer.

Printable Brochure

Course and Schedules:

Seminar (8 Credits)
For three days of each week, you'll participate in intellectual discussion with professionals who are knee-deep in the field you are studying. You'll go "behind the scenes"; into the offices of most of the speakers to get a first-hand insider's view of the week's topics of discussion. Some of the speakers are big names and some are not, but one thing's certain, they are all major players at the local, national, and international levels who are passionate about their stance, present valid viewpoints and are invited to challenge your point of view. You'll definitely leave class with a real world perspective.

The Internship (4 Credits*)
We provide you with an instant network of organizations to look through. Six to eight weeks before the semester begins, you'll gain access to all of the internships in our database that are relevant to the program into which you have been accepted. We'll give you all the information you need about each organization, including descriptions of internship positions and address and phone numbers for our contacts. You can start your search right away, or wait until you arrive in D.C. Either way, you'll have nearly two weeks at the beginning of the semester to attend interviews and make your selection. We suggest you have at least three interviews. Before you arrive, we will also provide you with resources to help you write an effective résumé and cover letter.

*Note that the Public Health track has a 6-credit internship component.

Optional Components

Research or Elective Course (3 or 4 Credits)
You have the option of choosing to conduct an in-depth research project using Washington, D.C. as a laboratory of information or to take an elective class from AU's hundreds of offerings to fulfill an academic requirement from your home school.

Member school students should check with their member school representative to see if their school requires students to conduct a research project while on the program.

International Certificate students (from non-U.S. universities) enrolling in the elective or research course incur additional fees per-credit fees.

Washington MonumentHousing and Meals:
Most Washington Semester Program students will live with their roommate(s) in The Berkshire Apartments “The Berks” or WISH Woodley Park Apartments. Studio and one-bedroom, small and medium/large sized, apartments are available in university-leased spaces at the Berkshire Apartments. The WISH Woodley Park Apartments offer three bedroom/two bathroom apartments that occupy six students (two per bedroom). All apartments are two-person occupancy (there are no single occupancy apartments in the university’s leased apartments). Furniture, cable and internet are provided.

Most Washington Mentorship Program and International Gateway Program students live with their roommate(s) on the American University main campus in Leonard Hall. It is a traditional residence hall with corridor-style rooms and shared hall bathrooms. Renovated in 2007, Leonard Hall has a lounge space that was designed and furnished by Crate and Barrel.

All residence halls are equipped with beds, dressers, desks, and chairs. You are expected to bring linens (standard twin sheets, blankets/comforters, pillows, pillow cases) and a a wastepaper basket. Optional items to consider bringing are laundry basket, computer, alarm clock, iron, dishes, drinking glasses, utensils, hangers, mini refrigerator, laundry detergent, non-halogen desk lamp, mirror, radio, stereo, television and a small vacuum. The halls are air-conditioned for the months during and around the summer, but you might want to bring a small fan for the warmer weeks in April and May.

The Jacobs Fitness Center on the main campus is open early and has state of the art equipment. As the residence hall rooms are no longer equipped with land lines, AU suggests that students sign up for a cell phone plan before they get to campus. Sprint, Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile provide service within the metro area. Students may also sign up for a plan once they arrive.

Like all students residing in American University residence halls, SPExS students are expected to follow the American University Code of Conduct. The regulations protect both you and your fellow students. They will be explained thoroughly in mandatory floor meetings with your resident assistants and should not be taken lightly. We want you to make the most of your Washington experience by becoming familiar with these policies. Keep in mind that the university's "no alcohol" and "no cars" policies are the most commonly misinterpreted. The resident assistants, resident director, and Washington Semester staff can answer any questions you may have.
Residence Staff

The Residence Hall staff and Resident Director are here to help if there are problems with your living arrangements. If you have any residence hall problems, you can see the RA on duty or contact the front desk of your residence hall.


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