Welcome to the Semester in Washington Politics

Learn how political decisions are made, how power is wielded and how government is run

Semester in Washington Politics at the George Washington University was founded in 1995 as a hands-on, non-partisan, academic experience for students interested in the political process. The program is comprised of four main components, including:

  1. Two core classes, which all students are required to complete. These may be taken for undergraduate or graduate credit.
  2. An internship that builds on what the student learns in the classroom. Once admitted into the program, you will work with SIWP staff to find and apply for internships that match your interests and experience. 
  3. Weekly networking events that take you into the centers of power in Washington, including the U.S. Supreme Court, the White House, and Capitol Hill, as well as major news outlets, lobbying shops, and political consulting and government relations firms.
  4. The option to be paired with a mentor who can help guide you through the semester. Most mentors are alumni of SIWP, and all are political professionals working in Washington, D.C.

Semester in Washington Politics alumni have gone on to work for political campaigns, federal agencies, members of Congress, public affairs groups, and state and local government. Some have run for elected office themselves.

Interested in learning more?  Request information.

Semester in Washington Politics is a program of GW's College of Professional Studies

Past Internship Sites

Senator Maria Cantwell

Maria Cantwell has served in the United States Senate since 2001, serving the state of Washington. She previously served in the Washington House of Representatives the U.S. House of Representatives. She is currently the chair of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs.

Congressman Frelinghuysen

Rodney P. Frelinghuysen is serving his eleventh term as the Representative for New Jersey's 11th Congressional District. In the 114th Congress, Frelinghuysen serves as New Jersey's senior member of the House Appropriations Committee and on three key appropriations subcommittees: Energy and Water Development, Homeland Security and Defense, where he serves as Chairman.

The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars

The Wilson Center, chartered by Congress as the official memorial to President Woodrow Wilson, is the nation’s key non-partisan policy forum for tackling global issues through independent research

White House Initiative on American Indian & Alaska Native Education

The Initiative, located within the Department of Education, seeks to support activities that will strengthen the Nation by expanding education opportunities and improving education outcomes for all American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) students.

The Senate Committee on Indian Affairs

The Senate Committee on Indian Affairs has jurisdiction to study the unique problems of American Indian, Native Hawaiian, and Alaska Native peoples and to propose legislation to alleviate these dif

United States Trade Representative

The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) is an agency that negotiates directly with foreign governments to create trade agreements, to resolve disputes, and to participate in global trade policy organizations. We also meet with governments, with business groups, with legislators and with public interest groups to gather input on trade issues and to discuss the President's trade policy positions.

Senator Hirono

'After serving more than a decade in the House, I was elected lieutenant governor in 1994. I led an effort to revamp Hawaii’s workers’ compensation insurance laws, saving businesses millions.

Senator Patty Murray

As Washington state’s senior Senator, Patty Murray has a proven track record spanning more than two decades of fighting for Washington statefamilies in the United States Senate.