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Public Policy and Economics


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June 6 - July 31, 2015
Early Deadline: December 10, 2015

Spend 8 weeks in the nation’s capital with 90 students from around the country and world who are all passionate about public policy and affecting change in their communities. The intensive schedule is designed to maximize your time in Washington by combining learning in the classroom with practical internship experience. The Engalitcheff Institute on Comparative Political and Economic Systems (ICPES) will give you an insider’s view of Washington, and by the end of the summer you may be ready to call DC home!

When you picture your future, do you see yourself writing legislation, researching policy issues, going to law school or working in government? If so, this is the program for you. Employers are looking for recent graduates with experience, and the best way to stand out after graduation is to complete an internship and make connections now.

The Fund for American Studies has sponsored academic internship programs in Washington, DC for over 40 years. Our objective is to provide a real-world professional and academic experience for college students to help prepare them for responsible leadership in the future.

 ICPES consists of the following major components:

LIVE: Housing in furnished apartments on George Washington University’s campus, just steps from the White House and Department of State, as well as the Foggy Bottom Metrorail station.

LEARN: Academic courses in economics and government accredited by George Mason University. Classes are held in state-of-the-art facilities at George Mason University’s Arlington campus, conveniently located just four Metro stops away from student housing.

INTERN: Internships with government agencies, Congressional offices, policy groups, political organizations, and law firms throughout the Washington area. Each site is accessible to public transportation, making it easy to get from home to work to class and back again.

CONNECT: Site briefings at key Washington institutions, guest lectures featuring policy experts, networking events and much more!

Your participation also includes these exclusive benefits designed to make your summer in DC an experience to remember:

  • Roommate matching with other institute students based upon compatibility criteria.
  • Easy access to the safe and affordable Metro train and bus system.
  • Full access to campus resources, including libraries, computer labs and much more.
  • Comprehensive orientation to the program, campus and the city upon your arrival.
  • Dedicated program staff members who are available to communicate with you about your internship placement, financial aid and general questions in the months leading up to the program.
  • Continued staff support while you are in Washington to ensure that you have an amazing experience. In addition to the full time, year-round program staff who will get to know you and help you throughout the summer, there will be alumni living in housing and serving as Program Advisors.
  • Professional development seminars on topics including job searching, public speaking and networking.
  • A mentor program where you are matched with a DC professional in your field of interest of interest.
  • Planned social events where you can connect with almost 400 other student leaders participating in LIVE. LEARN. INTERN. programs. These events may include: trivia night, a trip to a Nationals baseball game, volunteer projects, canoeing on the Potomac and a trip to Mt.Vernon.
  • An active network of over 14,000 alumni worldwide to join upon the completion of the program.

Find Out More

Be sure to check out the tabs to your left to read more about all aspects of the program. We accept applications on a rolling basis, so start your application anytime by clicking on the “Apply Now” link on the left-hand menu. Our staff is here to answer any question you may have – please see “Contact Us” for details on how to reach us.

“The professional experience gained through ICPES is invaluable. I now can move forward with more confidence and direction for my future career and goals. Due to the networking experience I got in Washington,D.C. , I truly believe my dream job is a possibility.”

Cassie Sullivan, Boise State University

Intern, Office of Government Ethics


Program Dates

Students should plan to arrive on Saturday, June 6. Students will be allowed to check into their on-campus apartments at between 10:00am - 2:00pm. Orientation activities will be planned for that evening and during the next few days. Students will be required to move out of the apartments on Friday, July 31 by 11:00am. Further details on arrival logistics, registration and orientation will be provided as the summer approaches.

2014 Tentative General Weekly Schedule

This schedule is only meant to give an idea of the summer’s general structure.  It is subject to change according to events and briefings. You will receive updated weekly calendars in class and by e-mail throughout the summer.


9:00AM – 3:00PM       Internships

4:00PM – 7:00PM       Economic Problems & Public Policies (June) or American Political Thought (July)

7:15PM – 8:15PM        ICPES Guest Lecture


9:00AM – 5:00PM       Internships


9:00AM – 5:00PM       Internships

6:00PM – 9:00PM       Economic Problems & Public Policies (June) or American Political Thought (July) 


9:00AM – 1:00PM       Internships

2:00PM – 5:00PM       Economic Problems & Public Policies (June) or American Political Thought (July)

5:30PM – 7:30PM       Public Policy Internship Seminar (June & July)


9:00AM –5:00PM          Internships

Saturday & Sunday

Optional Weekend Activities Provided:activities can include canoeing on the Potomac River, attending a Washington Nationals Baseball Game, or visiting a museum.

For a sample two-month calendar please click here.

Board of Visitors

The Engalitcheff Institute on Comparative Political and Economic Systems board of visitors is comprised of prominent working professionals in the DC community. They voluntarily assist in the planning of and fundraising for the Institute as well as offer their support with guest lecturers and internship placement. Their focus is to ensure that all students leave with an enhanced understanding of the functionality of government and a valuable experience that will benefit their future career goals.

Peter Redpath, Chairman

Student Division Director

The Federalist Society

Karen M. Czarnecki

Director of Education

Law & Economics Center, George Mason University School of Law

Christopher C. Hull

Chief Executive Officer

Blastroots, Inc.

Sheree Anne Kelly

Vice President

Public Affairs Council

Davor Kunc (AIPES 2002, IIPES 2004, ICPES 2005)

Program Manager

Directorate-General for Enlargement, European Commission

Aaron Lewis

Director of Media and Government Relations

Arianespace, Inc.

Brian Lopina


Washington Navigators

Ann Ngo

International Trade Specialist

U.S. Department of Commerce

Liz Purdy Porter

Director of Operations and Conferences

Southern Governors' Association

Sean Redmond

Director of Research & Legislative Affairs

U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Jocelyn Rowe


Rowe Global Consulting Group

Christopher W. Ullman

Director of Global Communications

The Carlyle Group

Marc Wheat

Deputy Assistant General Counsel

Securities and Exchange Commission

Brian Wood (IBGA 2006)

Legislative Director

Congressman Robert Hurt (VA)

DISCLAIMER: Members of the ICPES Board of Visitors serve in a personal capacity and do not represent their listed employers.