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Office of International Programs

United States: Washington DC Semester Internship Program

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Intern in the Capital!


This competitive program at American University lets students intern in Washington D.C. while taking seminars that highlight guest speakers from the realms of politics, law, international business, journalism, economic policy, peace and conflict resolution, and more. This program is excellent for students interested in international relations and political science.

  • There are limited places on this program -- it is highly competitive!
  • Juniors and Seniors
  • Clean record with the Office of Community Standards and good academic and College standing
  • Professional application: materials are submitted on-time, are edited before submission, and are thorough and thoughtful.
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Endorsement from the Faculty Director, Dr. Mike Gunter. You will need to prepare your preliminary proposal to share with Dr. Gunter
  • Depending on your major, you may need to have completed specific course prerequisites in order to receive major credit for the internship
  • American University requires students be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to participate in their program.
  • This program has a required advising session (30 minutes) as part of the application process.
    Click here to schedule a virtual advising session.

Fall 2021

  • Aug 21 - 29: Move in and Welcome
  • Aug 30: First Day of Classes
  • Oct 15: Fall Break
  • Nov 24 - 28: Thanksgiving Break
  • Dec 10: Last Day of Classes and Internships
  • Dec 13 - 18: Exam Period 
  • TBD: Program End Date and move out

Spring 2022

  • Jan 6: Program Start Date
  • Jan 10: First Day of Classes 
  • Jan 24Internship must begin no later than this date 
  • Mar 6 – 13: Spring Break 
  • Apr 25: Last Day of Classes 
  • Apr 27 – May 3: Exam Period 
  • May 3Program End Date 

Flight & Orientation

Students are responsible for booking their own flights. During the orientation program, students move into their housing, learn about the program, meet their fellow students and finalize course registration. The orientation wraps up with the Internship Bazaar where approximately 100 prospective internship employers come to campus to conduct on-the-spot interviews with interested students.


No visa is needed since this program is based in the United States. However, if you choose to participate in an international experience as part of your program, AU will assist with any visa paperwork as needed.


This program offers a number of concentration areas and students choose one area to focus on for the internship and core seminar.

Students on this program take the following courses:

  • Internship: The internship and accompanying course are designed to provide you with professional experience in your concentration area or a related field. You will have access to the program's internship network to search for your placement site.  During the first two weeks of the program, you will attend interviews and confirm your placement. 
  • Core Seminars:  The two core seminars are focused on your concentration area and utilizes guest exports and out-of-classroom visits to enhance the learning experience. 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.

Transfer of Credit

The internship and core seminars are worth 4 credits each for a total of 12 credits. Courses on this program appear on the Rollins transcript as transfer credit; the grades are displayed and are factored into the Rollins GPA.  It can take up to three months for grades to be processed and appear on the Rollins transcript. For information on approving courses for major/minor and General Education/rFLA requirements, and other academic policies, please visit our Academic Information page.


Students will choose off-campus housing from a selection offered by AU from the following: the Flats at Bethesda, 1301 Thomas Circle, or Meridian Mount Vernon.


There is no meal plan. Instead, apartments have kitchens and students cook for themselves.

The Student Association of Student Activities (SASA) organizes a variety of events for students in the school of Professional and Extended Studies at American University, including students from this program.  Past events include barbecues, a Super Bowl Watch Party, Second Chance Prom, Winter Masquerade Ball, Karaoke Night, Nationals game, themed food nights sponsored by Bon Appétit Catering and more. The organization also plans community service events, fundraisers for local/international organizations and bring special guest speakers to the Tenley campus.  Students also have access to other American University activities, events and facilities.

Program Fee

The program fee is equal to Rollins College tuition and fees, and room for one semester. Most Rollins financial aid and scholarships will apply to the semester abroad.

  • Tuition: Standard Rollins tuition
  • Room and Board: $4,625.00


Tuition, fees, and program administration, accommodation, seminar activities and excursions, transportation pass for DC metro and bus, and orientation.

Does Not Include

  • Airfare from Orlando: $300 (estimate)
  • Meals: $2,340 (estimate)
  • Personal expenses and entertainment: Costs will vary but an average estimate is $1600

Need-Based Scholarships

Since this program is US-based and does not involve extensive additional costs, scholarships are only available to off-set increased costs of accommodation for commuter students. Students can apply for scholarships through the Rollins program application.